Share This Page

Mayor's persistance a good sign for Heidelberg

| Wednesday, Feb. 6, 2013, 9:03 p.m.
signal
While signs on I-376 westbound list Exit 65 as the Heidelberg/Carnegie exit, this sign and two others on I-376 eastbound currently only list Carnegie. Doug Gulasy | The Signal Item
Signal
PennDOT installed this sign denoting Exit 65 as the Heidelberg exit on I-376 eastbound about three years ago after Heidelberg Mayor Ken LaSota contacted the department. As part of the Parkway West Improvement Project, PennDOT will install two signs advertising Exit 65 as the Heidelberg/Carnegie exit. Doug Gulasy | The Signal Item

When he drives home from his teaching job at Robert Morris University, Heidelberg Mayor Ken LaSota sees what other travelers on Interstate 376 see: signs for Exit 65 that say simply “Carnegie.”

Soon those signs will include his borough.

As part of the multimillion-dollar Parkway West improvement project slated to begin in spring 2014, PennDOT will add two signs on I-376 East advertising the exit as the Heidelberg/Carnegie exit.

“It's important for people locating Heidelberg and businesses who want to come to Heidelberg,” LaSota said. “And then thousands of people coming from all over the world that land at Pittsburgh International Airport, when they drive into the City of Pittsburgh, they'll see Heidelberg.”

That isn't the case now. Though signs on I-376 West denote Exit 65 as the Heidelberg/Carnegie exit, those on the other side of the highway didn't match.

LaSota began pushing for a change four or five years ago, when U.S. Rep. Tim Murphy, R-Upper St. Clair, led a charge to re-label the Parkway West as I-376.

PennDOT told LaSota it wasn't possible to make the change then, even though the sign was supposed to include Heidelberg.

About three years ago, LaSota said, PennDOT put up a standalone sign for Heidelberg near the I-376/I-79 interchange.

When he heard about the parkway improvement project, which will include work from the I-79 interchange to the Fort Pitt Tunnel, LaSota resumed his push. He contacted Murphy's office and state Sen. Wayne Fontana, D-Brookline.

Staff for both lawmakers contacted PennDOT.

“Two new sign frames for I-376 Eastbound are currently in the design stage,” Murphy's office said in a statement. “While no timeline has been identified, we are told signage will be replaced when the project is complete.”

Murphy also sent LaSota a letter informing of the change and thanking him for his “leadership on this important matter.”

LaSota hopes new signs attract development to the borough.

“We don't have a chamber of commerce in Heidelberg but most chambers of commerce would definitely promote the idea that a community is served by two exits off two major interstates,” he said.”

Doug Gulasy is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-380-8527 or dgulasy@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.