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Site Plan Presented for New Dark Hollow Road Recreation Area

New recreation space could be open to the public next summer.

Plans for a new recreation space along Dark Hollow Road in Oakmont are under way.

Next week, Oakmont Council is expected to give a nod of approval to a tentative site plan for the project.

The creation of the area is part of a settlement between the borough and Kacin Co. The developer is responsible for creating the recreation space because its Edgewater at Oakmont housing plan doesn't contain recreation space, per zoning regulations.

Earlier this week, Bud McCutcheon, chief engineer for KU Resources—the firm working on the project—and members of the borough recreation board presented the plan to borough officials.

The recreation area is expected to have a gravel parking lot, soccer field, little league baseball field and a field house—with restrooms, storage and a concession stand. Oakmont Recreation Board member Tom Bland said the facility most likely would be used by the Riverview Athletic Association and Twin Boro Soccer.

Engineers are in the process of obtaining necessary permits from the Department of Environmental Protection because the outfield of the baseball field is located on a "flood way."

The company is expected to solicit bids this month and receive them in January. Remediation and demolition could begin as early as the end of January, and construction should start by March. McCutcheon said construction should end in May, and the park would be turned over to the borough and opened to the public in July.

Kacin Co. will spend a maximum of $425,000 for remediation of the land and another $425,000 for the development of the land.

"We're going to ask contractors for quotes on a menu of items, and the contractor who will get us the most items on that menu would probably get the job," McCutcheon said.

If money allows, bleachers could be purchased and a wood fiber surface walking trail could be installed, according to McCutcheon. Other wish list items include a playground, lighting and batting cages.

The park has yet to be named.

Mayor Robert Fescemyer thanked everyone involved with the project.

"We're thankful and appreciate the time put into this project," he said.

Council President Timothy Milberger agreed.

"We're driving toward things that will be beneficial to the community," he said.

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Pete McQuillin December 07, 2012 at 12:01 PM
Penn Forest Natural Burial Park's wildlife refuge area borders this land on the Penn Hills side of Plum Creek. We are thrilled to see it being turned into community recreation space. Pete McQuillin, cemetery manager
Jim Parsons December 07, 2012 at 01:25 PM
And my property also borders this land. I echo Pete McQuillin's comment. However, if my children were still young enough to be playing Twin Boros Soccer, I would be very concerned about their health and safety at that location. There are near-misses on Dark Hollow Road everyday between cars and those huge tri-axle trucks. You can see tire tracks in the mud that show how often vehicles are forced off the road because it is so narrow in places. This is an issue we addressed with council several years ago when they were giving approval to the concrete batch plant. Also, if and when that plant is constructed (it has been approved), the amount of heavy equipment traffic in that area would grow way beyond what's there now. So, no, I don't think I would want my kids playing along Dark Hollow Road on a regular basis. But as a property owner, I look forward to seeing and hearing kids playing off my back deck.
Drew Richards December 07, 2012 at 04:43 PM
I would like to see an enclosed dog park be included as a part of the facilities. There are a lot of dog owners in Oakmont who would like to not have to go to Hartwood or the Penn Hills dog park to let their dogs run around. I know a lot of people let them loose in Dark Hollow Woods but they are not really supposed to.
Bob Smith December 08, 2012 at 02:08 AM
Just worry about WTAE, troublemaker.
Jim Parsons December 09, 2012 at 08:38 PM
Nice, Bob Smith. What a prince of a guy you must be.
J tabis January 22, 2013 at 11:23 PM
I agree that Oakmont would truly benefit from a dog park too. There are a lot of dog lovers who would help make this happen. The animals need a place to run too. Dark Hollow road is quite dangerous with all the trucks at all hours of the day and night. Hopefully the safety issue is being addressed.

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