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Fayette, Westmoreland counties' mining offices to merge

| Saturday, June 1, 2013, 12:11 a.m.
An architect’s rendering of a Department of Environmental Protection office building to be constructed in New Stanton.

The state plans to consolidate two Bureau of District Mining offices in Westmoreland and Fayette counties into a 39,000-square-foot building to be constructed on a site between the Pennsylvania Turnpike's New Stanton interchange and Interstate 70, officials said.

The Department of Environmental Protection, which oversees the mining offices, will consolidate district mining offices in Hempfield and South Union and move field inspectors handling waste management and water quality into the new facility, DEP spokesman John Poister said.

Poister was not certain how many employees would be affected by the move but said some who are based in the South Union office may move to the office in California, Washington County.

The Bureau of Deep Mine Safety has about 20 employees at its South Union office who could move to the new building, said Joseph Sbaffoni, bureau director.

Hudson Holding Co. of Hermitage, Mercer County, plans to construct the one-story building on 8.5 acres along Broadview Road in New Stanton for $6.5 million to $7 million, said partner Eric Hunter. The building will be constructed to be Energy Star-certified, meaning it will be built to minimize environmental impact. The building will have a white roof to reflect the heat, make use of natural light where possible and employ low-impact development methods, Hunter said.

The developer hopes to break ground on the project on Aug. 1 and anticipates completing it within eight to 10 months, Hunter said. The site will have parking for 190 vehicles.

Hudson Holding intends to present site plans for the project to the borough's planning commission on June 12, Hunter said. By July, the company anticipates obtaining approvals from the borough and Westmoreland County, including storm water management permits, he said.

The developer anticipates closing on the purchase of the property in mid-June, Hunter said. Richard Bair, whose family owns the property, could not be reached for comment.

Hudson Holding in February signed a 10-year lease with two five-year options with the Department of General Services. The state will pay annual rent of $837,430 for the office and garage space, said Troy Thompson, a General Services spokesman.

Hudson owns nine other state office buildings and constructed the Department of Labor and Industry offices in downtown Greensburg eight years ago. The firm sold the Greensburg office building to an investor, but intends to maintain ownership of the New Stanton building, Hunter said.

Joe Napsha is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-836-5252 or jnapsha@tribweb.com.

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