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Jefferson Hills breaks ground on public works facility project

| Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2013, 2:06 a.m.
Cindy Shegan Keeley | Daily News
Jefferson Hills officials and project coordinators break ground on a $4.15 million public works facility near the borough building along Old Clairton Road on Monday evening.

Almost exactly two months to the day since Jefferson Hills council awarded bids for the construction of a $4.15 million public works facility, borough officials and project planners broke ground on Monday evening on the site adjacent to the Jefferson Hills Municipal Center along Old Clairton Road.

Council president Chris King said the new facility will be a huge upgrade over the borough's small and rapidly deteriorating facility near the Route 51 interchange.

“Anybody who ever asks the question why we need this, you just need to drive down the road and take a look at our current public works complex and you'll know the answer,” he said. “This facility is very badly needed.”

The complex will sit on 11 acres and will feature an 18,000-square-foot main structure that will include parking areas for 18 vehicles along with storage for tires, parts and tools and a separate service area with three vehicle service bays, two of which will be equipped with truck lifts. It will include a 7,200-square-foot salt storage facility with solid concrete sidewalls and a galvanized steel arch roof.

Public works director Tom Lovell said that building will hold up to 4,000 tons of salt.

“That'll be enough to carry us for an entire season,” Lovell said.

Dave McLean of McLean Architects LLC said the entire complex will be state of the art.

“Our most successful projects happen when our client has not only the need — which clearly we have here — but the leadership and vision of what it is they'd like to accomplish,” McLean said. “This is a great project for a great borough.”

Although the complex originally was expected to cost about $3.5 million, bids came in almost a million dollars over that projection. But King said the importance of the new facilities can't be understated.

“For a community of our size and potential, council and the staff felt a need to create a complex that will have an optimal work environment and also help maintain our truck fleet and equipment,” he said. “Obviously, there's a cost for us up front, but you have to invest in order to get optimal results.”

The complex is scheduled to be completed in August 2014.

Tim Karan is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-664-9161, ext. 1970, or tkaran@tribweb.com.

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