Residents of a Peters Township street are looking for improvements to help mitigate safety concerns.

“For the last 10 or 15 years, Longvue Drive has been steadily deteriorating,” Peter Glasser, whose house is on the street, said at Monday’s township council meeting. “The public works department occasionally puts patches on potholes, which then fall out after a few months, leaving even deeper and wider potholes.”

He also said the sides of the road are falling away in places, making for narrow passage.

“When a delivery truck comes down our road at the same time as residents approaching from the opposite direction, we often have a choice of either going into a half-foot-deep sharp rut where there used to be a road or driving up onto a neighbor’s lawn in order to avoid a collision,” he told council.

Extending southeast from Jomat Drive, Longvue has no outlet, and the street terminates without a proper means for vehicles to turn around.

“That’s been a longstanding problem,” township manager Paul Lauer said. “People have to back out, and that just is not a safe way to do that.”

Regarding overall improvements to the road, he said a major project is in order.

“There isn’t anything that can be repaired and make it right. It has to be reconstructed,” Lauer told Glasser and fellow Longvue resident Richard Muse, who spoke during the council meeting about the street’s condition. “It’s also going to take the installation of storm sewers to make the road work correctly.”

Engineered drawings are required for the township to submit a grant application for the project to the Washington County Conservation District, according to Lauer, who said work probably would take place in 2023.

In other business at the council meeting:

  • Mark Zemaitis, township director of engineering, provided an update on a Peters Lake upgrade project that is mandated by the state Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection.

In April, council voted to award a $61,645 professional services contract to Rizzo International Inc., headquartered in Pittsburgh, to determine an appropriate design. At that time, the construction cost estimate was presented as between $200,000 and $400,000.

“We were hoping to get some relief for the spillway from the rainfall study, but there’s again been a change in the way DEP dictates what storm events to use,” Zemaitis said Monday. “It used to be the 24-hour storm event.”

The new parameters are to measure rainfall in two-, three-, six-, 12- and 24-hour periods, and to use the highest amount to determine what the spillway can handle.

It’s not necessarily the total amount of rainfall,” Zemaitis said. “It’s the inches per hour.”

Meanwhile, the township’s original design for the project is based on the previous standards.

“That’s not good news, but Rizzo has done a good job to do everything it can to try to calculate their way around it,” Zemaitis said. “Now Rizzo’s direction is to come up with some alternatives. I think that no matter what they come up with, it’s going to be a pretty big-ticket item.”

A revised estimate is anticipated by the fall.

“One of the intents in terms of the timing of doing this study was to put us in a position so that when we were sitting down and talking about the budget, we would have a number in front of us,” Lauer said.

  • Lauer announced an ordinance and declaration of taking with regard to Manor Way would be on the agenda for council’s Aug. 9 meeting. The measure was defeated, 4-3, May 10.

At issue is connecting the street from the long-established Beacon Manor neighborhood to the new Juniper Woods residential development.

Many residents of Beacon Manor and the nearby area consistently have objected to the interconnection, citing safety concerns about additional traffic on their relatively narrow streets.

Township officials also are concerned about safety, particularly with regard to emergency access and response times to a neighborhood that for decades has had a single means of vehicular ingress and egress.

Multimedia Reporter

Staff writer Harry Funk, a professional journalist for three-plus decades, has been on the staff of The Almanac since 2015. He has a bachelor’s degree in journalism and master of business administration, both from Indiana University of Pennsylvania.

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