Diving board removed from Dormont pool

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Plenty of swimming will go on during the remainder of the summer at Dormont pool, but no diving. That's because the borough removed the pool's diving board June 27.

Jeff Naftal, borough manager, discussed the reasons during Monday's council meeting.

In 2010, Allegheny County Health Department granted a variance to allow a diving board at the pool even though its depth is not quite the required 10 feet. A condition was that the borough's insurance covered the board.

After a meeting last week with a health department inspector, Mr. Naftal said he checked with the borough's insurance underwriter and learned that a diving board that doesn't meet code is not covered, even when a variance has been granted.

"The issue is the depth of the water," he said.

He said to obtain coverage for a diving board under the circumstances probably would be cost prohibitive.

The borough is looking into options to replace the board safely.

In other matters:

• Council heard a presentation from Pittsburgh environmental engineering firm Hazen & Sawyer about a stormwater infrastructure improvement project for Athens Alley.

The alley, which runs between Kelton and Hillsdale avenues on the east side of the borough, has been subject to floods affecting residents of nearby streets, some of whom said Sunday's downpours resulted in water with a depth of 2 1/2 feet.

The consultant has recommended installing a relief pipe along the alley and Annex Avenue to Kelton, and providing additional storm inlets.

The projected cost is estimated to be about $500,000. Council President Bill McCartney said borough officials plan to discuss how to pay for the corrective measures.

"We're not going to rush into this," he said.

• A message sign for the Dormont Historical Society apparently will remain outside the municipal center on Hillsdale Avenue, despite some residents' efforts to have it replaced for esthetic considerations. Greg Langel and his wife, Jennifer Baron, who live across the street from the sign, have met with borough and historical society officials to offer possible alternatives. Council, though, is taking no action toward a replacement.

On Monday, Mr. Langel claimed the plastic-and-metal sign is "not appropriate for a historical building in a residential neighborhood."

"I'm saying that this sign devalues property in the borough," he added.

Muriel Moreland, historical society president, said the sign suits her organization's purpose of making Dormont residents aware of its existence and promoting its events. The historical society is paying most of the sign's cost.

• Council approved a traffic-calming measure for Belrose Avenue near its intersection with Potomac Avenue. Laurel Asphalt of Windber will install a colored and patterned crosswalk for $1,760.

The cost normally would be about $3,900, said Mr. McCartney. Laurel offered the lower rate as an introductory price to determine if the borough might want to pursue similar measures at other intersections. The crosswalk will be made of a textured plastic material that has a longer life than painted stripes and costs less than installing brick.

The hope is drivers will slow down along the heavily traveled residential street, said Mr. Naftal.

"We're looking to make the crosswalk more visible," he said. "We need to make sure to do what we can to slow traffic down at that intersection."


Harry Funk, freelance writer: suburbanliving@post-gazette.com.


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