Allegheny County's Redevelopment Authority today approved the purchase of the last piece of land needed for developing a sports complex planned for the western suburbs.
Board members voted to buy 1.6 acres from Trinity Commercial Development for $25,000. The tract adjoins the Neville Island Bridge in Coraopolis. It will become part of the 78-acre Montour Run recreation area that will be constructed on former rail yards in Coraopolis, Moon and Robinson.
The site adjoins the "Mile 0" trailhead of the Montour Trail.
Most of the land was donated to the Redevelopment Authority by the nonprofit Sports Legacy Foundation. Once the site is developed as rugby, soccer and lacrosse fields it will be turned over to the county as an addition to its park system.
"It's really going to be an asset to improving the recreational quality of life in the area," said state Sen. Wayne Fontana, D-Brookline. He is a member of the redevelopment authority, and his district includes part of what will become the Montour Junction park.
Construction of the first playing field should begin this year, Dennis Davin, the county's economic development director, said.
Project plans include a 3/4-mile extension of the Montour Trail through the new park. Montour Run, a trout stream, runs through the site, and plans call for development of an area for fishing.
The site is bordered by Route 51, the Coraopolis Bridge, CSX Railroad tracks and residential areas. Once owned by the Pittsburgh & Lake Erie Railroad, Montour Junction is a "brownfields" site. It has been undergoing an environmental cleanup for several years.
Plans call for private fund-raising to help pay for the development of the area as a sports complex.
Len Barcousky: email@example.com or 412-263-1159.