Streetscape making progress

Mt. Lebanon’s Washington Road business district is getting a facelift. Work on the first phase of the nearly $4 million project is nearing completion. New light poles adhere to the dark sky concept, designed to limit light pollution of the night sky by focusing light on the ground. /Photo: Rob Papke

The $3.86 million Vibrant Uptown streetscape project is making significant strides toward the finish line.

Construction began on July 5, 2021, and supply chain issues forced delays on the project, but Mt. Lebanon Commercial Districts Manager Eric Milliron says the new completion target is August 26.

“Progress has really picked up in the last month or so,” Milliron reported at a May 24, 2022, Mt. Lebanon Commission meeting.

“The planters on the east side, opposite the municipal building, are all formed and ready to go, and they’re beginning work on the west side. Once they get all the planter boxes completed, they can finish up with the sidewalks.”

The project is a renovation of the municipality’s central business district, with new planters, sidewalks, seating and underground conduits for electricity.

Contractors have completed the broom-finished concrete sidewalks beginning at the driveway at the Washington Elementary School and extending to Orbis Caffe, at 675 Washington Road. Contractors will continue sidewalk demolition from 675 Washington Road to Shady Drive, prior to installation of the new sidewalk. New exposed aggregate sidewalk sections have been poured in front of Mineo’s Pizza, Bistro 19, Howard Hanna and Good Orthodontics.

The existing planter islands have been demolished throughout the entire eastern side of Washington Road up to Shady Drive. Planter islands and light poles have been removed beginning at Shady Drive, in front of Rollier’s, and extending to Cedar Boulevard. Contractors have dug trenches for underground electrical conduits and have been forming and pouring the foundations for the planter curb islands, and installing foundations for new light poles.

Still to be completed are the construction of ramps for ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) improvements.

Supply chain issues delayed the arrival of light poles, paving stones, steel railings and anchor bolts, but all of the material is now in the hands of the contractor.

To date, 13 new light poles have been installed, wired, and are operating, beginning at the south parking lot, opposite Washington Elementary, to the driveway entrance at the South Garage. More new light poles will be installed along the east side of Washington Road, beginning at the Bognar Building to Alfred Street.

The clock at the T station steps near the North Garage has been removed and repaired. The clock will be re-painted to match the color of the new black light poles. Contractors were required to make unforeseen repairs to the vault shaft in the North Garage, before continuing with sidewalk demolition.

Once work is complete on all of the sidewalks, planter boxes and light poles, the next step in the process is completing landscaping, which, as with the other phases of the project, will be subject to the cooperation of the weather.

Throughout the yearlong construction process, all Washington Road businesses have remained open. Milliron has praise for business owners, shoppers and residents who have remained patient and flexible throughout the work.

“They’re being understanding,” Milliron said. “Obviously this project is very impactful to them, and they appreciate every effort to streamline it and, of course, let the customers in.”

You can stay abreast of the progress of the streetscape project at www.mtlebanon.org/vibrantuptown.