Condemnation Notices Posted on People's Building; Owners Eager to Sell

October 03, 2018 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: News

(Photo special to Tube City Almanac)

Condemnation notices have been posted on McKeesport's Peoples Building, the landmark 1906 skyscraper at the corner of Walnut Street and Fifth Avenue that a local real estate agent in January called the "Crown Jewel" of the Mon Valley.

Citing health and safety violations, signs dated Aug. 17 were posted on the entrances to the building, the one-time home of People's Union Bank and Trust Co. before it was merged into Union National Bank of Pittsburgh.

No demolition hearing has been scheduled, and demolition is not imminent, Mayor Michael Cherepko said. "It doesn't mean it can't be un-condemned," he said.

An inspection of the interior found numerous violations that can be corrected, Cherepko said, but the public is not in danger.

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City Eyes Garage, Trail Improvements With $2.9M State Grant

October 02, 2018 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: News

(Photo special to Tube City Almanac)

The Lysle Boulevard parking garage could be reopened and connected to the former Daily News Building with the assistance of a $2.9 million grant from Pennsylvania's Multimodal Transportation Fund.

And city officials and state Sen. Jim Brewster have bigger plans --- like re-routing the Great Allegheny Passage trail to the edge of the Monongahela River, and possibly elevating a portion of it.

The state Department of Transportation on Tuesday announced the award of $2.9 million in funding to help rehabilitate the parking garage --- closed to the public for almost 20 years --- and improve the trail.

"Obviously, we've very excited," McKeesport Mayor Mike Cherepko said Tuesday night. The improvements to the garage and the trail have the potential to "jumpstart the Downtown area," he said.

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Update: McKeesport Man Found Dead After Shooting

October 01, 2018 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Crime and Police News

UPDATED: The victim's identity has now been released. 4:30 p.m.

A 26-year-old McKeesport man was found dead in an alley off of Beaver Street on Monday morning.

The Allegheny County medical examiner's office has identified the victim as Andrew J. Jefferson.

In a prepared statement, Allegheny County police Lt. Andrew Schurman said city police and paramedics were dispatched to the 1800 block of Forte Alley at 12:24 a.m. Monday for a report of "shots being fired."

When they arrived, Schurman said, they found a man, later identified as Jefferson, suffering from a gunshot wound to the head. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

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Activist, '60s Icon Angela Davis Coming to City Oct. 19

September 30, 2018 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: Announcements

(Above: Angela Davis speaks to students in Wellington, New Zealand, during a 2007 lecture tour. Jonathan Ah Kit photo via Flickr, licensed under Creative Commons.)

Legendary activist Angela Davis --- who was fired from her job at the urging of Ronald Reagan and was labeled a "dangerous terrorist" by Richard Nixon --- will come to McKeesport this month to speak at Penn State Greater Allegheny.

Davis, 74, will be the third keynote speaker in the university's Crossing Bridges Summit and is scheduled to speak at 7 p.m. Oct. 19.

Although Davis' visit to McKeesport has not yet been formally announced by the university, tickets for students are still available on the EventBrite website and a spokesman confirmed that she is scheduled to appear. No additional tickets remain for the general public, according to EventBrite.

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School Year Moving Smoothly for 'Rejuvenated' MASD Staff, Superintendent Says

September 28, 2018 |

By Richard Finch Jr. | Posted in: News

McKeesport Area teachers began their year with a bus tour of the communities and neighborhoods the school district serves.

At last week's board meeting, Superintendent Mark Holtzman Jr. told school directors the tour --- involving more than 350 employees and 10 school buses --- was "a very powerful event."

“I spoke to our staff a little bit about what we’re doing, what our direction is as a school district, and how we meet the needs of our students, and it was very moving,” he said, adding that he hopes the event sets the tone for a positive school year.

“I’m extremely proud of our building administration, our principals, people on the front line, our teachers and support staff, and their attitudes toward the education of our students,” Holtzman said. “We have a rejuvenated, energized and passionate group, and I look forward to building on that as we move throughout the year."

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NVT Commissioners Consider Emergency Repairs to Damaged Alley

September 26, 2018 |

By Richard Finch Jr. | Posted in: North Versailles Twp. News

North Versailles Twp. commissioners are considering a request from people in the Arlington neighborhood for emergency repairs to an alley.

At this month's meeting, Ward 2 Commissioner Daryl Mitchell said the alley between Union and Broadway avenues is so bad, some residents can't get to their homes.

“One of the residents there can’t even back his car up, without going into a gutter --- that’s how bad it is,”  Mitchell said. "With the rain we had recently, it has gotten worse ... I know we set a budget, but with all this rain we’ve had, it’s caused a lot of damage, all I’m asking is there some way we can help make some type of improvement in that alley.”

Commission President Sam Juliano said repairing the alley was on the township's paving “wish list” earlier this year, but it was deleted for budgetary concerns.

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White Oak Developing Plans for Heritage Pool Improvements

September 26, 2018 |

By Cami DiBattista | Posted in: White Oak News

White Oak officials are preparing to make improvements to handicapped accessibility around Heritage Hills Pool.

At this month's meeting, council authorized the borough engineer to develop specifications and advertise for bids for Phase I of the project. A community development block grant of $35,000 has been approved for the project, borough officials said.

Council also awarded a $121,695 contract to Tennis Roofing of Washington, Pa., to replace the roof on the bathhouse at the pool.

In other business, council awarded a $63,165 contract to Swede Construction Corp. of Elizabeth Twp. to construction a new salt shed.

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Port Vue Slates Fall Clean-Up This Weekend

September 24, 2018 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

Port Vue will have fall cleanup days this Saturday and Sunday, a spokesperson said.

Trash bins for bulk collection will be located at the Romine Avenue Fields, in the parking lot near the comfort stations, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Only borough residents with proper identification may use the bins.

Electronics also may be recycled for $5 per item. For more information, call 412-664-9323.


NV Twp. Thanks Scout for Park Beautification Project

September 23, 2018 |

By Richard Finch Jr. | Posted in: North Versailles Twp. News

(Submitted photo courtesy Martino family)

A North Versailles Twp. student’s landscape gardening project has brought him one step closer to earning the prestigious rank of Eagle Scout.

Last week at the township commissioners' regular monthly meeting, board President Frank Bivens presented Noah Martino, 17, with a certificate of recognition and accompanying plaque for successfully completing the North Versailles Park Beautification Project in June.

“I have one merit badge that I am finishing over the next two months, and then I will officially get the Eagle rank,” Martino said.

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White Oak Residents Demand Answers to Sewage Problems

September 23, 2018 |

By Cami DiBattista | Posted in: White Oak News

A room full of White Oak residents attended this month’s borough council meeting to air grievances after they said their homes were flooded with sewage when heavy storms hit the area Sept. 8, 9 and 10.

“I had three inches of sewage in my basement --- sewage, not rain water,” said John Baker, who lives on California Avenue. “Something’s not right. Something has to be done.”

Borough Manager John Palyo issued a statement on behalf of council, saying that White Oak does not own the sanitary sewer system, the Municipal Authority of Westmoreland County does.

White Oak Solicitor Krisha DiMascio said the Westmoreland municipal authority was asked to attend the council meeting. No one from the authority attended.

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