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Murrysville takes over road for $1.77M

| Wednesday, Nov. 14, 2012, 8:54 p.m.

There were some bumps along the way, but Logan Ferry Road soon will be Murrysville's responsibility.

Murrysville Council unanimously agreed last week to accept responsibility for the 3.7 miles of Logan Ferry Road that stretch from the Plum line into the municipality. The state Department of Transportation will pay the municipality $1.77 million to take control of the road as of January.

The road will cost the municipality about $10,500 to maintain, said Chief Administrator Jim Morrison. In addition to annual maintenance, officials plan to re-asphalt the 2.5-mile section of the road south of Route 286 and repair and coat the 1.2-mile section north of Route 286. The municipality also will improve drainage along the road to help cut back on damage, said municipal engineer Joe Dietrick.

Officials have discussed taking control of the road in the past and delayed a decision on the proposal last month.

The municipality will own the portion of the road stretching from the Plum borough line to Plum Line Nursery.

Councilman Dave Perry said the improvements Dietrick and Morrison outlined will make the condition of the road vastly different than other portions of it.

“It's a D-level road outside of the municipality,” Perry said. “It will be like a superhighway in Murrysville but not so great outside.”

About 1,200 homes — nearly one-fifth of all the homes in the municipality — are within a quarter mile of the road, Morrison said. About 2,600 vehicles travel the road daily.

Councilman Bill Vance said the municipality must step in if officials want the road to improve.

“The only way that road would see improvement is Murrysville doing it,” Vance said.

Council President Joan Kearns agreed. She cautioned that if Marcellus shale drilling does begin in Murrysville, it likely would be in a portion of the municipality that is served by the road.

“A lot of people are living on a road that is substandard,” Kearns said. “We need to bite the bullet, put our hand out and take the $1.77 million and get the job done.”

Dietrick said work could begin on Logan Ferry Road as early as June.

Daveen Rae Kurutz is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-856-7400, ext. 8627, or dkurutz@tribweb.com.

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