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Beechview street closed into June

| Thursday, May 13, 2010

A Beechview road closed since a water main break in mid-April will remain closed another month because Allegheny County plans to do work in the same area, Pennsylvania American Water officials said Wednesday.

A 120-year-old, 18-inch pipe under Crane Avenue between Beechview and Tropical avenues broke early April 13, spilling water and debris onto busy Banksville Road below.

Penn American spokesman Gary Lobaugh said crews replaced the broken pipe and filled in open pits, but the road won't be repaved and reopened until at least June 17.

"It's been difficult, to say the least," said Mt. Lebanon resident Brennan Larkin, 48. "I really have to detour all around Beechview to get around it, and that's not easy."

Officials at nearby Brashear High School said the closure hasn't been a problem for school buses, which usually go the other direction down Crane to Saw Mill Run Boulevard.

Allegheny County Public Works planned to resurface and improve drainage systems on six area roads -- including Crane -- since before the water main broke, said Bernie Rossman, road operations manager. The county opened bids yesterday and can't reveal what they were until they are certified, but the engineers' estimate for all six roads was $4.68 million, Rossman said.

The county is asking the apparent low bidder, New Castle-based Lindy Paving Inc., to do the drainage work before Penn American repaves that stretch of Crane Avenue.

Doing so would keep the county from tearing up fresh pavement, and Penn American would shoulder the cost of repaving that short stretch of Crane, Rossman said.

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