Road realignment, amphitheater are big-ticket items in Murrysville capital improvement plan
Murrysville officials have about $10 million in road projects planned for the next five years, including the next steps in the proposed realignment of the intersection of Sardis Road, Logan Ferry Road and Franklintowne Court.
Finance director Diane Heming said $600,000 generated from traffic impact fees has been budgeted to put toward the proposed realignment, which is expected to cost about $1.7 million.
The project is part of Murrysville’s capital improvement program, which lays out larger-scale projects over a five-year period, from 2020 to 2024.
Last year, Murrysville’s planning commission evaluated five options for the troublesome intersection.
Logan Ferry Road technically ends at Franklintowne Court, which then quickly intersects with Sardis just north of the traffic light at Old William Penn Highway.
A second traffic light a short block away, at the intersection of Vincent Hall Road and Route 22, means morning and evening commuter traffic regularly backs up at the intersections.
Murrysville Chief Administrator Jim Morrison said the next step involves a thorough evaluation of the alternatives to improve traffic flow at the intersection.
Amphitheater, other projects in 2020
Next year, the capital improvement plan also calls for spending $800,000 on an amphitheater in Murrysville Community Park, along with the associated facilities and restrooms. The amphitheater’s construction will build on this year’s installation of a brand-new playground and water features designed to make the area a “destination playground,” according to municipal officials.
Murrysville Recreation Director Carly Greene said the amphitheater will serve as the main stage for the annual Concert in the Park or possibly a regular series of concerts.
The capital plan calls for $3 million in 2020 road projects, as well as $125,000 in storm sewer repairs, a cost that has been rising for the municipality in recent years.
Other 2020 items in the capital improvement plan include:
• $288,000 for two new police vehicles, a skid loader and a utility works machine for the public works department;
• New equipment and other improvements at Bear Hollow Park;
• Reinforcement of several sections of trail in Duff Park that have been affected by recent heavy rainfall.
The municipality has now gone 11 years without a tax increase.
Morrison said that while he doesn’t foresee the need for a millage increase in the next five years, creating a balanced budget without one is posing a bigger challenge each year.
“I can tell you that one of the biggest challenges we’re going to face is delivering emergency services in this community,” Morrison told council. “The ranks are getting thinner and the equipment is more expensive. We have to look at: At what level do we want to deliver these services, and what is the resident willing to pay for those services?”
Heming echoed those sentiments.
“I’m not concerned that we’re strapped (for cash), but it is getting harder and harder every year,” she said.
Patrick Varine is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Patrick at 724-850-2862, [email protected] or via Twitter .