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Riverfront 47 awarded state grant for trail planning

Tawnya Panizzi
| Wednesday, May 30, 2018, 12:18 p.m.
The former Azcon scrap yard will be replaced by Riverfront 47, a planned commercial development on 1.5 miles of property from Aspinwall to Sharpsburg. Developers were awarded a state grant to develop trails and parks within the site.
The former Azcon scrap yard will be replaced by Riverfront 47, a planned commercial development on 1.5 miles of property from Aspinwall to Sharpsburg. Developers were awarded a state grant to develop trails and parks within the site.
Debris from the Riverfront 47 property was hauled away in preparation to return portions of the site to public green space. The land stretches from Aspinwall to Sharpsburg along the Allegheny River.
Nanci Goldberg | For the Tribune-Review
Debris from the Riverfront 47 property was hauled away in preparation to return portions of the site to public green space. The land stretches from Aspinwall to Sharpsburg along the Allegheny River.
A photo shows what Riverfront 47 looked like in past years before it was purchased for redevelopment.
Nanci Goldberg | For the Tribune-Review
A photo shows what Riverfront 47 looked like in past years before it was purchased for redevelopment.

A $250,000 state grant for trail planning at Riverfront 47 is a significant step toward expanding the region's park system and restoring a missing section of the Three Rivers Heritage Trail, developers said.

Steve Mosites, president of The Mosites Company which is overseeing commercial development of the 1.5-mile property, said the money will be used to fulfill the vision of connecting people to the waterfront.

“We'd like this to be a development within a park,” Mosites said.

The grant was made available through the state Department of Community and Economic Development. Specifically, it will come from the Greenway, Trails and Recreation program.

Riverfront 47 stretches through Aspinwall, O'Hara and Sharpsburg, where there is an access point to the property at 19th Street.

Early plans called for 500 housing units and retail shops, but developers have yet to submit final plans for approval.

The property represents more than 75 percent of the uncompleted Three Rivers Heritage Trail segment between Aspinwall and Millvale. It nearly abuts the trail section planned for Etna Riverfront Park.

Trish Klatt, president of the Aspinwall Riverfront Park Board, said the grant has the potential to expedite the trail development in a game-changing way.

“People often think of trail development in 20-year time frames,” she said.

A new hydropower plant, planned for Allegheny Lock and Dam 2, will also be incorporated into the park and trail planning process.

Planning will be a public process, Mosites said.

Proposals are due by June 15.

The money comes just months after developers were awarded a $2.5 million state grant site acquisition and preparation at the Sharpsburg end.

Tawnya Panizzi is a staff writer for the Tribune-Review. Reach her at 412-782-2121, ext. 2, tpanizzi@tribweb.com or via Twitter @tawnyatrib.

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