The former McKeesport Daily News building at the corner of Walnut Street and Lysle Boulevard will likely welcome its first new tenants in October.
At a meeting Wednesday, council by 6-0 vote awarded a $195,000 contract for renovations to the building to Kucich Construction of McKeesport. Council President Richard Dellapenna Jr. was absent.
Mayor Michael Cherepko said Kucich Construction's was the lowest of two bids received on the renovations, which will be made to the first floor of the building in the former advertising department. That area will be used by the Allegheny County District Attorney's Office for training and meetings between prosecutors and police, Cherepko said.
Money for the renovations to the building are not coming from the city's general fund, he said, but from $300,000 in grants, including $200,000 from the Allegheny County Community Infrastructure and Tourism Fund.
The DA's office will be paying rent for the space, Cherepko said.
The city purchased the building from the former Daily News' parent company, Trib Total Media, in November 2017. The newspaper published its last edition Dec. 31, 2015, and aside from use as a filming location, the building has been empty since then.
City officials had hoped that tenants would begin occupying the building in May. But completing an inventory of its contents, cleaning the interior and making repairs took longer than expected, they have said.
Still, Cherepko said Wednesday, the city hopes the first tenants will be moving into the second floor this fall, and said a ribbon-cutting may be held as early as Oct. 1.
The Redevelopment Authority of the City of McKeesport is managing the building's operations.
The space for the district attorney's office will likely not be ready by October, Cherepko said. "There is major work that needs to be done first," he said.
Point Park University's Center for Media Innovation is expected to be the anchor tenant, and Tube City Community Media Inc., parent organization of Tube City Almanac and Internet radio station WMCK.FM, also has been asked to rent space in the building.
A fire appartus dealer is also planning to lease offices in the building, city officials said.
The city is currently calling the structure the "McKeesport Multi-Media Center," but Cherepko said Wednesday that name may yet change.
The outward appearance of the building, including the "Daily News" sign and clock on the corner, will remain intact, he said, though additional signage will be erected, including a tenant directory in the newly created parking lot across the street.
Originally published August 08, 2018.