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City to consider energy proposal, college's center

| Thursday, March 7, 2013, 8:55 p.m.

Greensburg City Council will vote next week on an agreement designed to lead to $1.5 million in capital improvements and energy savings.

On Monday, council will vote on the proposed agreement with Constellation Energy's Fox Chapel office.

Council will take out financing to pay for the improvements and use monthly savings on energy bills to pay the monthly finance rate, City Administrator Sue Trout said.

“It's supposed to be a direct offset. The savings are supposed to offset the borrowing,” she told council this week.

Constellation has recommended a revamping of city lighting systems, including those in parking garages, city hall, other city-owned buildings and fire halls. Non-LED traffic signals are to be replaced.

Constellation recommends replacement of six boilers.

In addition, the company suggests that a cooling tower outside city hall be replaced and that an “air curtain” be installed at Kirk S. Nevin Arena to retain temperatures, Trout said.

The company did an analysis of city buildings to determine savings and what improvements should be made.

Council also will vote Monday on a proposal to turn over an alley to Seton Hill University for its dance and visual arts center. The alley runs parallel to College Avenue, and the center is proposed to sit over the alley.

Council will vote even though another city board continues to review the project.

Last month, the city planning commission tabled a review of the 46,000-square-foot center at the intersection of West Otterman Street and College Avenue until March 25, at the university's request.

Seton Hill officials told the commission they needed more time to answer questions asked by the commission.

State officials have earmarked $6 million in Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program funds for the proposed center.

Greensburg is serving as the sponsoring agency for the private university. University officials must put up an amount equal to the sum from the state.

The proposed facility would house three dance studios; one with seating for 50 people. Two practice studios for use by 10 to 25 students are planned, along with two galleries and classrooms.

University officials have not revealed a cost estimate for the project.

They want to begin using the building in late summer of 2014.

Bob Stiles is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-836-6622 or bstiles@tribweb.com.

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