Archive

Riverfront park still planned; funding needed | TribLIVE.com
News

Riverfront park still planned; funding needed

Moon Township leaders say they still want to pursue a riverfront park, but those plans remain stagnant several years later while officials seek funding.

The estimated cost for the park Moon officials first announced in 2012 is about $6.5 million to turn the 19.2 acres on Route 51 — between the Sewickley Bridge and Valley Ambulance Authority — into a riverfront park along the south bank of the Ohio River.

“It's going to be quite some time,” said Lance Welliver, director of Moon Parks and Recreation. “Right now we're just working on trying to get initial funding to get that off the ground. Unfortunately, it takes quite a bit to make that a reality.”

A few years ago, Welliver said Moon needed about $4.5 million just to prepare the site — a contaminated, old industrial site and adjacent property — to meet state Department of Environmental Protection standards.

“We haven't got current figures, but I'm sure it's higher than that now,” he said.

The township is seeking state and federal grants to move forward with developing the park, which Welliver called “a long process.”

An estimated additional $2 million is needed for park amenities and other improvements, such as upgrading a railroad crossing.

According to a master site plan, the site consists of three parcels, the majority of which is the former Russell, Burdsall & Ward Corp. manufacturing complex, which was acquired by the Moon Township Municipal Authority in 2002.

As a result of the industrial activity, oil from manufacturing processes contaminated some soil. The municipal authority acquired the property to protect the quality of its groundwater extraction wells nearby, and to ensure township access to the land, said John Riley, the authority's general manager.

Riley said the site plan was developed for the park several years ago. He sat on the committee, which consisted of several stakeholders, to help identify key ideas and issues related to the design and operation.

Once complete, the park would be primarily for “passive recreation” and a destination for land and water trail users. It would include a “great lawn” that would step down to the river's edge.

The park would connect to the planned Ohio River Trail, a 41-mile bike and water trail the Ohio River Trail Council wants to develop from Coraopolis to Ohioville in Beaver County.

Trails and pathways, pavilions, wildlife areas and lookouts, a playground, an urban beach, a water spray pad, river boardwalks and fishing piers also were part of proposals for the park.

Larissa Dudkiewicz is a Tribune-Review contributing writer.


TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.