Robinson officials at odds over zoning
Robinson commissioners this week approved a deal with neighboring Kennedy for a proposed townhouse development that would sit in both municipalities, but the Robinson board is at odds with zoning officials in the township.
Whether shovels will ever hit the dirt in Robinson remains in question.
Robinson commissioners are appealing a March decision by the township's zoning hearing board to grant a variance that would clear the way for McKees Rocks-based Duckstein Properties Inc. to build 41 townhouses off Herbst Road, including four in Robinson. The variance is needed because the townhouses would be in an area zoned for single-family houses.
In a separate matter, Robinson commissioners are appealing the zoning board's approval of a variance for a hockey training center in Parkway West Business Park. The proposed business, Overtime Hockey, withdrew its variance request this week and instead is seeking permission to operate as a health club, which wouldn't require a variance, said Christopher Jones, who would run the business with his wife, Michelle Jones.
The hockey center would feature a synthetic ice surface and open by Sept. 1, Jones said.
In a complaint filed in Allegheny County Common Pleas Court, Robinson commissioners accused the township's zoning board of granting variances that violate the state's municipal planning code.
The Robinson zoning board has a pattern of granting variances that amount to illegal spot-zoning, Commissioner Earl Mapel contends.
Commissioners are sending a message that their board will use its “authority to make sure that the ordinances are held up to the letter,” he said.
Albert Zangrilli, solicitor for Robinson's zoning board, responded: “I was surprised that, if those matters were so important to the municipality, (commissioners) didn't appear before the zoning hearing board and voice their concerns or objections.”
Duckstein filed its own appeal against Robinson commissioners, alleging Robinson is illegally trying to prevent construction of the townhouses while its appeal of the zoning decision is pending.
“We're hoping for an amicable resolution that saves taxpayers money, as well as my clients, money,” said Duckstein's attorney, Maureen Sweeney of Downtown-based Blumling & Gusky LLP.
In the deal with neighboring Kennedy, Robinson would get property taxes for townhouses within the township and Kennedy would assume responsibility for infrastructure in Robinson, including streets.
Kennedy commissioners are scheduled to vote on the deal on Tuesday, said Gerald Orsini, Kennedy's consulting manager.
Tory N. Parrish is a Trib Total Media staff writer. Reach her at 412-380-5662 or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
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.
- North Allegheny grad earns international recognition for public speaking
- Mt. Lebanon church plans $2M expansion project
- Mt. Lebanon looks to tackle pedestrian safety issue
- Neighborhood movie theaters use unconventional methods to draw customers
- Dormont considers fire-safety inspections
- Arsenal hard cider now served at Soergel Orchards in Franklin Park
- Dormont library program to pay tribute to Japanese culture
- Event to offer glimpse of cemetery’s history at Old St. Luke’s