New Kensington continues steady fight to eliminate housing blight
The fight against blight in New Kensington continues.
Last week, the redevelopment authority awarded a contract to Pittsburgh-based Jadel Minniefield Construction Services to bring down five more dilapidated structures.
Scheduled for demolition are 1261-1263 Kenneth Ave., 1223 Victoria Ave., 359 Main St., 513 Linden Ave. and 1123 Woodmont Ave.
According to redevelopment authority Executive Director Sarah Snider, removing those buildings is a priority for the city.
“Those are all really far gone, and they started to become a danger,” she said. “These are all city owned properties that they wanted to get cleaned up.”
The cost of the demolition, $65,000, is being covered by federal Community Development Block Grants.
Exactly when the buildings will come down is still up in the air.
Snider said there were actually eight properties up for demolition but that the other three — 523 Earl Ave., 215 Ninth St. and 1207 Victoria Ave. — will have to wait for another bidding process, as the paperwork to approve their destruction is still working its way through the state.
“There is a lot of good stuff happening — but it's a work in progress,” she said.
In addition to the eight properties the city has asked the authority to raze, Snider said that the code enforcement office continues to identify other properties, and property owners, that will require attention.
Officials say New Kensington currently has 64 properties on its demolition list.
While exactly what will happen to the lots once the buildings are gone is still undecided, Snider said all of it is just the beginning.
“With the acquisition of the Schreiber Industrial Park, the Corridor of Innovation, a lot is happening,” she said. “We're going to see many sparks like that.”