Murrysville Council agrees to sell parklet
By Daveen Rae Kurutz
Published: Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2013, 9:00 p.m.
Developers for the Blue Spruce Shoppes have acquired the final piece of the puzzle to begin work on Murrysville's largest commercial development in years.
Murrysville Council earlier this month agreed to sell Banner Parklet — a strip of municipal-owned green space along Route 22 that previously housed a Burger King and a gas station — to developers for $325,000.
The land was crucial to the parking and green space plans for the new mixed-use development, said Herky Pollock, a real estate developer and executive vice president with CBRE in Pittsburgh and developer for Blue Spruce Shoppes.
“We are delighted to have the Banner Parklet as an integral part of Blue Spruce Shoppes,” Pollock said. “The addition of this prime piece of land serves many purposes for our development ranging from parking to green space and the ability to house events. I commend (The Murrysville Economic and Community Development Corp.) and the municipality for having the foresight to acquire this parcel of land when they did and tie it to the development of the former Blue Spruce Motel.”
The land was given to the municipality as a gift in December 1998 by the Burger King Corp. There are several environmental concerns with the property because of its use as a gas station in the 1990s. Developers still need to work with the state Department of Environmental Protection to receive clearances on the property because of a high concentration of benzene in groundwater toward the middle of the property. The contamination is limited to the property and has not spread out of the park area.
Under the agreement, Murrysville and the community development corporation will split the net proceeds of the sale. Murrysville Economic and Community Development Corp. took responsibility for the property in July 2008 and worked to sell the property in connection with the Blue Spruce site.
Pollock said a groundbreaking date has not been set. He said he hopes to open the mixed-use development— which will include several specialty restaurants, retail shops, a Starbucks, a bank and medical offices — this fall.
Daveen Rae Kurutz is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-856-7400, ext. 8627, or email@example.com.
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