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Lower Valley communities join forces to save money on paving

| Monday, July 1, 2013, 5:30 p.m.

Three Lower Valley communities this year joined together for the first time in seeking bids for summer roadwork, a move that is expected to save taxpayers money.

Fox Chapel, O'Hara and Sharpsburg will share a joint contract for road paving, typically a hefty budget expense.

“The larger the contract, the better,” Fox Chapel manager Gary Koehler said. Much of the cost for road work comes getting the equipment into the area, he said.

“It makes sense if communities can band together and save money.”

Fox Chapel Council last week awarded a $748,000 contract to Youngblood Paving, most of which will cover upgrades to two borough roads: Field Club and Highland.

Field Club is the second-busiest road in the borough, after Squaw Run Road, Koehler said.

Council wanted to make the road a priority after having completed renovation work on Squaw Run last year.

“We wanted to do the most heavily traveled roads first,” said Koehler, adding that council will concentrate on secondary roads in years to come.

Highland Road, which is beyond Fox Chapel Area High School, on the other side of Powers Run Road, will be paved this year.

In Sharpsburg, a portion of Linden Avenue will be paved as part of the summer road program. Specifically, the intersection of Clay Street will be the focus. It is a busy area because traffic to the Watson Institute uses that section.

Councilman Lou DeLuca said crews will pave the street during the school's vacation.

Road projects will cost the borough $10,000 this year.

O'Hara's roadwork involves: Alpha Drive in RIDC Park, from Freeport Road to Beta Drive; Boyd Avenue, from Freeport Road to Center Avenue; Center, from Boyd to Watson avenues; Walnut Avenue, from Boyd to the township line; and Rodgers Drive West, from Conrad to Rodgers drives. Center Avenue, from Boyd to the cul-de-sac, is an alternate.

Work in O'Hara will cost about $589,000. It is scheduled to begin in July.

Tawnya Panizzi is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-782-2121, ext. 2 or tpanizzi@tribweb.com.

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