County council OKs demolition of 5 sites

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Allegheny County Council gave the go-ahead Tuesday night to demolish five buildings in the county's South Park.

The five buildings are the Duck Pond House, McConkey House, McConkey Barn, Sedota House and Schoonmaker Hall, all structures that have deteriorated and that the county has deemed in need of demolition.

The target date to begin demolitions of the first four buildings, at a cost of $35,000, is Aug. 1, according to the county. The bid for Schoonmaker Hall, which is being done separately because its foundation is near Catfish Run Creek, is expected to come this week, county manager William McKain told members of council.

The county's projected start date for demolition of Schoonmaker is Oct. 1.

The county has budgeted $175,000 for demolition of buildings in its parks.

An amendment by county Councilwoman Sue Means, R-Bethel Park, to require the county to remain within $133,000 for demolition costs, and to return to council if the costs superseded that level, failed to pass. The demolition bill passed 14 to zero, with Councilwoman Amanda Green Hawkins, D-Stanton Heights, absent.

Also Tuesday, county Executive Rich Fitzgerald gave his quarterly address to council, in which he appraised council members of topics ranging from the proposed restaurant rating system to the size of the county's fund balance to other developments in the county.

He told council members that the county was seeing a dozen restaurants open every month, and that senior citizens have expressed support for a restaurant rating system.

It was his first appearance before the full council in its chambers since their debate and vote in May on the proposal to drill for natural gas beneath Deer Lakes Park. Ms. Means asked if the county was looking at opening Round Hill Park in Elizabeth Township to drilling.

Mr. Fitzgerald said no.


Kaitlynn Riely: kriely@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1707.

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