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Aspinwall riverfront park entrance to benefit from gaming money

| Wednesday, Sept. 25, 2013, 9:00 p.m.

Money from casinos will help build a safer entrance to the proposed Aspinwall Riverfront Park.

Aspinwall received $500,000 last week from the Pennsylvania Gaming Economic Development and Tourism Fund. The money will be used to improve the park entryway's intersection with Brilliant Avenue.

Susan Crookston, who has led efforts to develop the park, said the total cost could be as much as $2 million.

However, the grant represents a significant contribution.

“It's a huge step forward,” Crookston said. “We're far from having it completed.”

Crookston said the park group learned of the funding opportunity through the office of state Sen. Randy Vulokovich, R-Shaler. She thanked state officials for their support.

Improvements at the intersection will align the park entrance with a traffic light. Crookston said once the project is complete, it will make the entrance safer.

“We really think it would be great for economic development and safety,” Crookston said.

The grant money will go to the borough, which controls the property where the entrance would be located.

The intersection upgrade was one of 19 projects to receive grant money from the fund totalling more than $6.5 million.

The others include a water meter replacement project in Etna, staging center rehab work at Phipps Conservancy in Oakland and reconstruction of Fall Run Road in Shaler.

Tom McGee is an associate editor for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-856-7400, ext. 1513 or tmcgee@tribweb.com.

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