When is a street not a street?
Bridgeville is trying to remove an 11-by-25 grass and dirt section of Main Street from the borough’s street plans in order to block the Bedner’s developer from building an entrance in that area.
The borough council voted unanimously after a 40-minute public hearing on the issue to grant a neighbor’s petition to close the small patch of grass near a farm gate to traffic. It’s too early to tell if the decision will scuttle plans by the Bedner’s developers to build an entrance there, or if it merely will be a nuisance for the residential plan.
“I know this isn’t the solution to the problem,” said Neil Lyons, the neighbor who petitioned the borough. “But it’s something that I have the ability to do to prevent this.”
He added that he’s worried that Upper St. Clair will “walk all over us” after that township’s commissioners approved the 136-lot development on April 2. The development was approved with entrances at Main Street, Cook School Road and Scarlett Drive.
Meanwhile, at least 20 Bridgeville residents attended the public hearing to discuss how to remove traffic from the roads that will be most impacted by the influx of cars. A traffic study commissioned by the borough could come back with suggestions that include one-way streets, speed ramps, more signs and lowered speed limits.
“Speed is going to get someone killed on that road,” said borough resident Michael Regan, who lives on Ridge Road.
He hoped the study would show traffic calming devices such as speed ramps could slow traffic in that area. Any suggestions in the traffic study would have to be approved by 70 percent of residents living on Ridge Road, Main Street, Cook School Road and Pesavento Drive.
“Anything you can do to speed that process up, I would strongly appreciate that,” he said.
Bob Fryer, who is co-owner of the Beinhauer-Fryer Funeral Home on Route 50, said “the ballgame has changed” with the new development and hoped the borough would try to request more state funding to improve the roads in the area.
“We’re taking the abuse from all the neighboring communities and I think we should be able to ask for any money available,” Fryer said.
But other projects, such as plans to renovate a crumbling wall on Bower Hill Road, have been rejected for funding. Council President Nino Petrocelli Sr. said “there’s not money,” although borough lawyer Richard Ferris said they’re working hard to find any available funds.
“Everyone is working,” Ferris said. “We’re trying to explore every avenue.”
Also during the meeting…
- Regina Lakus, whose daughter last month requested that the borough consider naming Chartiers Park after World War II hero Ed Schneider, again appealed to the council on the issue. Councilman Jason Sarasnick said there have been requests from others to name portions of the park as memorials. He suggested the parks and recreation board formulate a plan for requests before moving forward with any decisions.
- Chess Street resident Kelly Plute said residents in her area are having parking issues after a group home moved onto the street. She said workers and relatives constantly visit the home, putting more than a dozen additional parked cars on her street. She’s worried about traffic congestion and speeders who might not be able to see oncoming traffic or pedestrians. The borough said it will contact the operator of the group home to discuss the issue.