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Contractors likely to miss January target for West Kittanning community center

| Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2014, 12:51 a.m.

The opening of West Kittanning's community building on Arthur Street could be delayed until February.

Officials hoped to open the building by the end of this month, but delays in installing electricity and gas lines, as well as doors, could keep it from opening on schedule, according to Councilman Ken Trudgen.

“Electric is supposed to be in by Jan. 26, and they have the drywall up and some space heaters running,” Trudgen said. “They have the doors, and installing them is their next move.”

Crews installed plywood over entryways as a stopgap measure until they can install the doors, Trudgen said.

Mayor James Sobiski said the doors should be installed immediately, especially with the new drywall and snowy conditions.

“Normally, you enclose it first and then build on the inside,” Sobiski said. “But now that it's the wintertime, it'll get all damp and could ruin the drywall.”

Trudgen said workers have been able to keep moisture out of the building and should have doors installed by the end of the week.

Crews began constructing the facility in July after razing the former West Kittanning Elementary School.

Borough taxpayers funded the one-story, 2,400-foot building, designed by Senate Engineering, using a $450,000 loan from F&M Bank. It led council to raise taxes by 1.25-mills, the first hike in a decade.

Borough Secretary Carly Cowan said the borough and contractors agreed to finish construction within six months, making the estimated completion date Jan. 25.

Trudgen said he plans to meet with contractors on Thursday to discuss their progress and finalize interior stain and wood colors.

Once the project is completed, council plans to host an open house.

Other business

Council hopes to appoint a borough auditor and a member of the West Kittanning Municipal Water Authority during a special meeting at 6:30 p.m. Jan. 21 in the West Kittanning Volunteer Fire Department, 401 Arthur St.

Residents interested in filling a position are asked to send a letter of intent to the borough office, 229 Arthur St., West Kittanning, PA 16201.

Brad Pedersen is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-543-1303, ext. 1337, or bpedersen@tribweb.com.

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