Monroeville approves pool sale to state turnpike commission
Monroeville council voted unanimously to sell the municipality’s public pool to the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission for a highway-widening project.
The decision came despite residents urging officials to reconsider the sale, which puts and end to Monroeville Community Pool’s 45-season history.
The 10-acre property along Abers Creek Road and its various assets will be sold to the commission for a little more than $1 million. The commission has said the pool will be demolished to make way for the turnpike’s ongoing widening project.
Council members expressed sympathy for residents who were visibly upset by their decision.
“Unfortunately, it is very disheartening to lose this community amenity. There’s no doubt about that,” said Mayor Nick Gresock after council’s vote Tuesday.
The mayor commended council for amending the agreement to include the creation of an escrow account that would allocate the proceeds from the sale to the municipality’s parks and recreation department.
The agreement was also amended to exclude the PTC from purchasing the property’s mineral rights. However, the municipality has not determined who owns the mineral rights.
“So the sale of the property will not convey the mineral rights to the turnpike. So whoever owns them will retain those rights,” Gresock said.
Manager Tim Little broached the subject publicly first in May when he said TPC officials approached the municipality a year before with their interest in the property.
The commission agreed to allow the municipality one last season at the pool. The season ended on Labor Day.
According to the turnpike website, the widening project will extend from mileposts 57 to 67 and span eight communities at a cost of about $300 million. Construction includes room for six lanes of traffic and other bridge and interchange reconstructions. There are currently four lanes on the turnpike.
The Monroeville section is one of three that totals 18 miles from Oakmont to Irwin. For more information on the project, visit bit.ly/2Hb44dE.
Council tabled the pool’s sale in July after residents expressed outrage. The delay allowed for a committee to meet with private pools in Monroeville to discuss how to replace the community pool’s several programs.
Councilman Eric Poach said a committee will meet again with the private pools Oct. 29 to discuss plans and options.
Dillon Carr is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Dillon at 412-871-2325, [email protected] or via Twitter .