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Monroeville Council OKs hotel next to Indian cafe

| Wednesday, July 9, 2014, 9:00 p.m.

A site plan for a four-story hotel on Old William Penn Highway was unanimously approved by Monroeville Council on Tuesday.

The Udipi Inn is planned for construction next to the Udipi Café, and within 5 miles of three Hindu Temples.

Religious events at the temples often draw family and friends from across the country.

Councilwoman Linda Gaydos said she considers the Udipi Cafe one of the best Indian restaurants in Pittsburgh, and said the 42 room hotel will be a “nice addition” to Monroeville.

Indian culture is more prevalent in Monroeville than most Pittsburgh suburbs, dating to the 1970s when engineers emigrated from India to work at Westinghouse and other Monroeville businesses.

The hotel will be located on the former site of a concrete plant near the border of Penn Hills.

New development on the vacant property should help to slow water runoff that would puddle and freeze on Old William Penn Highway, Monroeville Engineer Paul Hugus said.

“There was a lot of water that came off the hillside,” said Hugus, “and the biggest problem was when the concrete trucks would clean up, concrete would go in the catch basins.”

Some Garden City residents were concerned lighting from the hotel would create a nuisance, but there's a 300-foot buffer of vegetation between the hotel and houses so residents will not be adversely effected, Monroeville Zoning Officer Mark Ciufo said.

A retaining wall will be constructed behind the building, to accommodate one parking space for each of the 42 rooms.

Kyle Lawson is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-871-2369 or klawson@tribweb.com.

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