Canonsburg renovation project begins
The lower level of the Canonsburg borough building is undergoing renovations that will provide more space for the police department.
Katie Roupe Observer-Reporter
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Carmin Leone of Vern’s Electric in South Hills dismantles the overhead lighting in the basement of the Canonsburg borough building.
Katie Roupe / Observer-Reporter
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After months of preparation, Canonsburg Borough’s $1.3 million renovation of its 87-year-old borough building began Monday.
The first phase of the two-phase project will concentrate on the first floor, where the police department space will more than double in size, expanding into the former children’s department of the Canonsburg library as well as the borough’s storage area.
“We’re very excited to move forward,” said Mayor David Rhome, who oversees the police department.
According to Rhome, when completed, the police department will use the entire first floor, also known as the basement, of the building, giving the 21-member staff a state-of-the-art facility.
“We’re moving into the next century,” said Rhome.
Renovation of the police area is expected to be completed by July 2, he said.
The lobby of the building also is being renovated in phase one, according to Terry Hazlett, borough manager.
Phase two, which is set to begin in July, includes moving administrative offices to the former main floor of the library, installation of a command center for borough emergencies and changes to all borough restrooms to be handicapped accessible.
An official groundbreaking for the borough renovations will be held at noon Friday. The township building was built in 1926 with an addition built in 1963.
Council awarded contracts for the renovation project in January.
At its agenda meeting Monday night, council discussed the need to commit $23,164 in 2013 local share money to complete its portion of a match to the $650,000 being provided through a state grant. Council also will have to approve a $650,000 line of credit to cover costs until reimbursement is received from the state, said Hazlett.
In the meantime, Hazlett, who is retiring April 30, asked if council would approve Rhome being the borough’s “point man” for the project until a new borough manager is in place.
Councilman Fran Coleman, speaking for the building committee, also asked council to consider having a representative from HMT Engineering at the site for a few hours four days a week. Hayes Design, which is overseeing the project, will have a representative on site only one day a week, he said.