Dunbar Township development gets $1M

A $1 million state grant will help spur development of a 311-acre business park in Dunbar Township, near Dunbar Borough Elementary School and the Laurel Mall.
A $1 million state grant will help spur development of a 311-acre business park in Dunbar Township, near Dunbar Borough Elementary School and the Laurel Mall.
Photo by Evan R. Sanders | Daily Courier -- ---- photographed on Tuesday, February 12, 2013.
| Wednesday, Feb. 13, 2013, 12:11 a.m.

A state grant will help Fay-Penn Economic Development Council with the construction of a 311-acre business park in Dunbar Township.

The $1 million economic development grant through Pennsylvania's Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program, or RACP, was announced this week by state Rep. Deberah Kula.

“These state funds will help foster further economic development in Fayette County and the entire region,” Kula said in a news release. “This is a prime example of the type of public-private partnership that creates new jobs, strengthens our tax base and keeps people gainfully employed.”

Fay-Penn Executive Director Michael Jordan said the grant was achieved through Fay-Penn working with both the offices of Kula and state Sen. Richard Kasunic.

“Both offices played important roles in moving it forward,” Jordan said.

The money will be used for Phase One development of Dunbar Township Business Park, which is a $5.7 million, 311-acre park along Route 119 in Dunbar Township in a field between Dunbar Borough Elementary School and Laurel Mall.

Phase One will consist of 90 to 100 acres, will be the section closest to Route 119 and holds 11 buildable lots. The grant money will go toward that area of Phase One's infrastructure with roads, sewage, water, power, etc.

Jordan said Fay-Penn is in the early engineering and permit applications stage of Phase One and hopes to break ground sometime in the second quarter of this year.

“Once we get those permits, we'll be ready to move forward on Phase One,” Jordan said.

Because the grant money is a matching grant, Fay-Penn will also put $1 million into the costs of the infrastructure of Phase One.

While the money will not cover all the infrastructure costs, the contribution will be significant.

“Part of the reason the Dunbar Township site is on this list involves its strategic location,” Kula said. “It lies along Route 119, has close proximity to the Joseph A. Hardy Connellsville Airport and the Penn State Fayette Campus, has rail accessibility, and is centrally located near other gas and gas-related industries.”

Jordan said the location had a large role in attracting inquiries from warehouse, manufacturing and natural gas businesses.

“Our emphasis will be on those three areas with this park,” Jordan said, adding that he hopes the park not only attracts new and outside businesses to the area but also be a location for local businesses that want to expand.

Kula said 54 projects statewide were selected for RACP funding, totaling nearly $125 million, and those projects are estimated to create or retain more than 56,000 jobs in 28 counties.

In August of last year when Sen. Pat Toomey paid a visit to the future location of the park, Jordan said within the business park's first year officials anticipate to have 30 to 50 jobs created. Within 15 years, it is believed about 1,100 jobs will be created with the business park.

Mark Hofmann is a staff writer with Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-626-3539 or mhofmann@tribweb.com.

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