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Building pond better

| Monday, July 17, 2017, 9:00 p.m.

Updated 19 hours ago

At their public meeting Wednesday, the Penn Township commissioners will act on a request made by R.A. Snoznik Construction Inc. for easements associated with a proposed 19-unit condominium development, the Courtyard at Stonegate, in Harrison City. The property abuts the Penn Township Municipal Park's treed area above three ballfields and a skatepark.

One easement being requested would result in having trees in a swath 50 feet wide and over 450 feet long cut down to accommodate a stormwater sewer line. Additional park property would also be lost to a forebay pond and the extension of an existing detention pond. Total park property associated with this easement would be more than 1.5 acres.

In addition to the loss of green space from cutting down over 100 mature trees, runoff from rains could result in increased flooding of the ballfields, as well as erosion. And if standing water collects in the forebay pond, mosquitoes could breed and expose children and adults using the ballfields and skatepark to the West Nile virus.

An alternative for managing stormwater from the proposed development is to construct a detention pond on site. This will preserve the integrity of the park and be in the best interests of all parties that use park resources.

Paul A. Stieman

Penn Township,

Westmoreland County

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