Latest challenge to Upper St. Clair Whole Foods development denied, appealed

  • By David Singer
    Staff writer August 27, 2014
Work continues at 1800 Washington Road in Upper St. Clair, the future site of a possible Whole Foods store. - David Singer / The Almanac

An Upper St. Clair resident’s appeal that her right to notification of zoning changes regarding the plans for a mixed-use development at 1800 Washington Road was not violated by the township, an Allegheny County Judge has ruled. That ruling has already been appealed.

Common Pleas Judge Joseph James wrote in his Aug. 11 ruling that Moira Cain-Mannix knew about public hearings and zoning meetings yet chose not to attend, instead signing a petition in opposition. Attorney Tom Ayoob, who represents Cain-Mannix, has already filed an appeal challenging the ruling.

Cain-Mannix, an attorney with ties to Giant Eagle, one of the challengers to the development that includes plans for a Whole Foods store, denied acting on Giant Eagle’s behalf.

“We respectfully disagree with the judge’s ruling, and we have filed an appeal essentially challenging the same points,” Ayoob said.

One of the developers with 1800 Washington Road Associates said Cain-Mannix knowing about the township hearings yet appealing that her rights were violated outside of a 30-day challenge window “places her and Giant Eagle in a very poor light.”

“This will be her eighth Giant Eagle-financed appeal intended to delay the Whole Foods project, limit competition and destroy a valuable community asset,” developer Gerry Cipriani said.

Cipriani and the developers have filed a lawsuit against Cain-Mannix accusing her of delaying the project to stifle any potential competition to Giant Eagle.

Giant Eagle officials said they were paying for the appeals because they share residents’ concerns of potential traffic congestion and noise, and not because the grocer has a store less than a mile from the Washington Road development site.


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