ShareThis Page

Dormont OKs land swap with #1 Cochran car dealership

| Wednesday, Dec. 26, 2012, 8:58 p.m.

Dormont officials have approved a land swap with #1 Cochran, trading a borough-owned parking lot for the dealership's used-car lot — and setting conditions to ensure Cochran will limit disruption to parking on West Liberty Avenue.

Council unanimously approved the agreements in a special meeting on Dec. 19. Dormont will trade its triangular parking lot at West Liberty Avenue and McFarland Road for Cochran's used-car lot at West Liberty and Biltmore and a small lot the dealership owns on the other side of that intersection.

There was no discussion before the vote. The trade had been discussed for months in meetings where business owners worried about losing convenient parking.

Council members Eugene Barilla and John Maggio were absent.

Before the swap goes forward, Cochran must:

• Have all borough approvals required to build an Infiniti dealership on the borough lot.

• Convert the used-car lot to a public metered parking lot.

• Provide Dormont with an easement at West Liberty and McFarland to install a “Welcome to Dormont” sign.

Bill Krahe, developer for Cochran, said it's hoped construction will start in the spring for the Infiniti dealership. The work will include a parking deck that will wrap around the existing showroom.

During construction, Cochran will continue to lease a couple of borough-owned parking lots on the west side of West Liberty, between Cochran and Bethany Evangelical Lutheran Church, for its inventory. When work is done, expected late next year, Cochran will turn the lots over to the borough.

Dormont solicitor John Cambest said that the borough should have 75 parking spaces available to the businesses in that block of West Liberty Avenue while work goes on.

“We can't say anything specific at this time, but between our efforts and the borough's, we will have some options,” Krahe said.

Cochran representatives said they would help find additonal public spots during construction or it will pay the borough up to $2,500 a month for a shuttle bus or valet parking.

Cochran also agreed to participate in a future tax increment financing district that uses new tax revenue from development to pay back loans for infrastructure improvements.

Downtown-based Oxford Development expressed interest in building apartments, retail and a parking garage on the borough land and Port Authority's park-and-ride lot at the Dormont T station. However, borough Manager Jeffrey Naftal said a request for proposals would be issued once the TIF is approved.

Matthew Santoni is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-380-5625 or msantoni@tribweb.com.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.