Monday, November 18, 2013

The new $3.3 million Swim Center for the low, low price of $4.1 million

A groundbreaking ceremony was held on Friday, November 15, 2013 at 3:30 PM for the controversial Mt. Lebanon Swim Center renovation. The swim center project was part of a $4.5 million rec bond, which was to improve the golf course, Public Works, and Robb Hollow. We've been duped UPDATED The swim center project was originally estimated to cost $3.3 million. (Litigation costs not included.)

Now, our commissioners are considering turfing Wildcat and Middle Fields for the low, low price of $1,000,000. Commissioner Bendel's Field Enhancement Proposal estimates that the municipality's share will be $750,000 ($137,400 transfer from the Brafferton project [2012 unassigned 
fund], $462,600 [2013 unassigned fund] and $150,000 [2013 unassigned funds, 2014 budget or 2014 unassigned funds, if available.]) The non-municipal share of $250,000 will be funded by sports associations, sponsorships and grants. If the commissioners were off by just under 25% with the swim center, my guess is that the turf project should come in around $1,250,000. If the non-municipal funds don't materialize, then the municipality's liability will be $1.5 million or double what is being pitched to us. Of course, these numbers are based on John Bendel's estimate of $1,000,000.




Pictured breaking ground from left are: Commissioner Matt Kluck, Commissioner David Brumfield, Commissioner Kelly Fraasch, Commissioner John Bendel, Recreation Facilities Manager Bob Hlebinsky, Engineer Dan Deiseroth, Architect Mark Edelmann, Municipal Manager Steve Feller and Recreation Director David Donnellan.

ML breaks ground for swim center

A new and improved swim center, in the planning stages for a decade, has finally come to fruition in Mt. Lebanon. Commissioners broke ground Nov. 15 for the project, which will replace a competition pool built in 1977. With an estimated cost of $4.1 million, the new swim center will feature a completely renovated bathhouse featuring family dressing rooms and direct access from the entrance to the pool, a heater, zero-depth entry, climbing wall and a new, taller slide tower with one closed and one open slide. Structural upgrades include better drainage and new plumbing, pumps and filters. Municipal Manager Steve Feller said, “The new facility will retain the advantages of a 50-meter competition pool while also adding amenities that recreational swimmers and families want.” Designed by EPM Architecture of Pittsburgh and Wade Associates, a Harrisburg-based firm that specializes in aquatic facility design, the swim center was funded as part of a $4.5 million recreation bond issue floated by Mt. Lebanon Commission. The new facility is slated to open June 15, 2014.

88 comments:

Anonymous said...

Finally! The old pool was leaking, and the bathhouse was disgusting.

E. T. Gillen said...

Here we go again. The old pool and bathhouse needed renovating, but we were duped. The bond money was to include other renovations. The bid opening was irregular and resulted in a lawsuit. Because of the litigation, the pool opening has been delayed a month and the cost of the project is almost 25% higher than planned, thanks to half the people in the photograph.
Elaine

Anonymous said...

There are problems with the pool and how it was planned, the bids, etc. but was there consensus that repairs were needed? How old was the pool, etc.?

The real duping is going to be with the turf. Has anyone considered the fact that the turf will need to be replaced approximately every 8 years? Has anyone considered the fact that watering facilities will need to be installed so that the turf can be misted, etc., to reduce the chances of children suffering from heat stroke/etc, in a climate that is just getting hotter? Has anyone considered that Mt Lebanon will be installing 110,000 sq feet of plastic over a natural field?

Has anyone considered why the school district can pay to maintain the newly turfed field when a turf field is hardly educational?

Anonymous said...

An obvious question.
Who estimated the pool at $3.3 million? If that is as close as they can get, we need to find a better estimator.
In private industry you're figures are off by that much, you're quickly shown the door.
But I guess there is some truth to the old saw-- "close enough for government work!"
Hope residents are paying attention, because artificial turf is the next low-ball estimated project.

Anonymous said...

Has there ever been a project Lebo that was completed at or less than the original estimated?

Anonymous said...

9:01 pm If you look at resident driven interests, you will see that the price of the project comes in way under the estimates, by over 40% recently.

The pool project, in contrast, is expected to cost 25% more than the original estimate.

If you want Mt Lebanon to help you with a project, you need to look for your cost estimates outside of Mt Lebanon and then ask Mt Lebanon to explain why your resident driven project costs so much more in Mt Lebanon than it would anywhere else.

They won't answer your questions but at least you will be demonstrating that you are on to their tactics.

Anonymous said...

The pool bids came in $450,000 over the base budget, and the scheming idiots then included $506,000 in add-alternate enhancements that were not needed but wished for. Ad-alternates are supposed to be used only to the extent and amount that base bids come in UNDER the budget.

Lebo commissioners and staff pulled another deception out of the hat !

E. T. Gillen said...

Here is what is bugging me about Bendel's numbers. If you go back to my June 25, 2012 YSA proposal post, http://lebocitizens.blogspot.com/2012/06/presenting-youth-sports-alliance.html

Look at the first presentation I posted, not the updated, cleaned up version. You will see bids from June 1, 2012 for Wildcat and Middle. These numbers were for regular synthetic turf. The ecofriendly turf was much more expensive and was not considered as an option. Lighting bids were listed separately. Do Bendel's numbers include all items, such as the groomer or field markings? What about engineering?
I think Bendel's numbers are misleading.
Elaine

Anonymous said...

And which commissioner voted against the project?

Anonymous said...

Get ready, once this pool opens fees and lousy snack bar food prices will rise just as the user and rental fees are for the taxpayer financed high school athletic wing.

I suspect once the municipal figure it out they'll be installing parking meters in rec. and Wlldcat parking lots, just the SD imposed parking fees on students to park in a lot their families taxes built.

Oh you democrat-loving, spending fools. Wish there was a republican party in the bubble.

Anonymous said...

The community is getting exactly what it wants, and I don't understand why everybody is complaining about it. Most people are content to let somebody else make the decisions for them. What is it that Gideon said? - something like 2/3 of the registered voters sit on their asses on election day.

This is a process town. People move here for the schools and leave when their kids are done. In between, as long as they have enough money to pay the taxes, their expenses, and have enough left over for a status car and some fun they could not care less about who is in charge of whatever. I'll bet the average resident couldn't name his commissioner. Just keep the town safe, elite, and, above all, white. If the piper wants his due someday - well, that'll be the next homeowner's tough luck. I've got mine. That's the attitude.

Damion Deringer said...

The process of cost estimating is usually done in a minimum of 3 phases (SD, DD, CD) all of which cost estimates are provided to the design firm (if a 3rd party estimator is used) and owner (Mt. Lebanon). So there were at least 3 different times that the design firm and owner saw the over budget numbers from the estimators. Now, what the design firm and owner do with those numbers are questionable. Obviously with the add alternates, they tried to get the overall project under budget, but it seems they did not even try to pare down the base bid items. THAT is on the design team and owners.

E. T. Gillen said...

I could never name my commissioner until recent years. To be fair, raising a family and working full time is how I spent my days. Couple that with the recent PG article that someone posted here titled, "Pittsburgh suburbs suffering poverty at high rate." The executive director of SHIM said that many "are families that once had two healthy incomes and now because of unemployment or underemployment are "one crisis away" from being homeless."

The commission majority is pushing this and every other pet project through. I didn't vote for any of them. The way the system is set up, voters select one commissioner. Candidates only have to concentrate on the voters in their wards. And in my situation, candidates depended on their own party in their own ward.
So are voters getting exactly what we want? Not in my case. I never voted for any of them.
Elaine

Damion Deringer said...

But 8:39AM, you are right. Even in government work, you will be showed the door if your work isn't acceptable. Let's just see who is held accountable, but if history tells us anything; no one will be held accountable and everyone will give each other pat's on the back over it.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps when the home rule charter is rewritten, the structure of how this community is governed could be altered. We do not have any commissioners "at-large" and maybe we need a mayor!

7:42 - Allegheny County has one of the most stable populations of homeowners in the country. Many of my neighbors illustrate this phenomenon as they have owned their homes for 40 years or more. Many are or have been the original owners and recently moved.

Maybe we don't know our Commissioners for the most part because they don't reach out to us. I got to know mine when they started to make decisions that altered my daily experience living in Mt Lebanon. Now my whole family (including children) knows them all by first and last name, Ward number, interests, and voting inclinations.

Anonymous said...

Where will the nearly million dollars to pay for the overrun come from?

E. T. Gillen said...

Are you speaking of the pool or the turf, 10:38 AM?
Elaine

Damion Deringer said...

The turfing of the field will be around $1.75 million all told. Those numbers are just very rough estimates from general experience.

Anonymous said...

the pool

Anonymous said...

Allegheny County has one of the largest retired populations in America, and the reason for it is simple: Pennsylvania (and local governments) does not tax social security or pensions. You can put up with a lot of bad weather if you have a paid-up house, family nearby, and you don't have to worry about paying taxes on unearned income.

10:38 - where do you think it'll come from - you and me, pal!

E. T. Gillen said...

Thank you, Damion. I am confident of your estimate since this is your livelihood.
Elaine

E. T. Gillen said...

When a job is being done for the municipality, is the contractor charged any fees?
Elaine

Damion Deringer said...

Fees? well, the only ones that I can think of are permits, but those should be built into their bids.

E. T. Gillen said...

Permits or inspection fees, Damion. So the pool bid could include the cost of doing business with Mt. Lebanon for Mt. Lebanon?
Elaine

Damion Deringer said...

Yes

Anonymous said...

Contractors pay a fee for bidding but it is minor.

What are the total expenditures for the year? According to the Home Rule Charter, unassigned funds shall not fall below 8% of the total expenditures.

What is the annual revenue for Mt Lebanon?

How come these numbers aren't discussed when there's talk of spending 1 to 1.75 million?

Anonymous said...

Elaine, at 8:04 early in this chain you wrote: "Because of the litigation, the pool opening has been delayed a month and the cost of the project is almost 25% higher than planned, thanks to half the people in the photograph."

I'm sorry, but I don't remember ever hearing the other 50% protest to loudly or ask their constituents to storm "city hall" and demand that the project come in at or under budget.

We'll see the same thing when it comes to turf. The ESB who's assigned task is protecting the environment will remain mute, there will be some minor, minor adversion to the cost, the lack of planning, accurate numbers, etc., etc. by a few sports people, commissioner or two and the whole thing will pass as usual.
Everyone will give thanks, get their picture taken and throw up their hands saying we did what we could.
Then they'll work on raises for the managers and the next round of tax increases.

E. T. Gillen said...

2:28 PM, sounds like you are describing a Remely ruse.
Elaine

Anonymous said...

Remely would be the most obvious though there are others.
Then there are those that make no effort to hide their free spending ways.

Anonymous said...

Oh and don't count on the Homerule Committee making any big changes to the rules. The committee members weren't hand- picked to change the game.

Anonymous said...

Would somebody please tell me where the extra $900,000 supposedly needed for the pool will come from!

E. T. Gillen said...

It is coming out of the rec bond, 3:59 PM. The golf course, Robb Hollow, and can't remember the rest will suffer. It was intended for all of the above.
Elaine

Anonymous said...

The rest was Public Works, Elaine - it was over $500,000 for the golf course, about $300,000 or so for Robb Hollow and the balance for Public Works, none of which will now happen because the idiots approved a grossly and disgustingly over budget pool project.

Anonymous said...

Somebody needs to file a complaint with the State Ethics Board!

E. T. Gillen said...

Yeah right, 8:44 PM. Save it.
8:19, yep, that is it. http://lebomag.com/10320/hometown-improvement/
Elaine

Anonymous said...

8:44 why somebody, why not you, or one of our elected state representatives, one of our lawyers, the media or one of the dissenting (tsk-tsk) commissioners?
Why none... because there's nothing there that is illegal.

Anonymous said...

It may be legal, but is it ethical 9:40?

Anonymous said...

Probably not, 9:49, but the authorities with the power to do anything about it won't touch it with a ten foot pole.

Anonymous said...

http://www.post-gazette.com/local/south/2013/11/19/Pedestrian-hit-on-Washington-Road-in-Mt-Lebanon/stories/201311190159

Anonymous said...

Rumor has it that there is a group that is watching what is happening. Brumfield's son needs a turf to play lacrosse. Brumfield's daughter now has both an indoor and outdoor pool for her swimming. Pray those kids don't take up Polo or taxpayers will be buying polo horses. For those that believe that ANY of the boards will provide over site and/or relief... They are Brumfield's neighbors! Now it looks as if his wife is considering a run for School Board. Guess Mt Lebanon is the NEW DORMONT.

Anonymous said...

Yes, 11:45 another adult was hit by a SUV on Washington Road by another young driver. The 17 year old stopped but the pedestrian has severe head injuries. It is dark in that area. Will we get better lighting where its needed or on the turfed fields?
Be careful getting take out for dinner or walking to preschool. Washington Road is a killer.

Anonymous said...

In all fairness the old pool sucked! Anyone who has more than one child knows the impossibility of watching a child in the baby pool and another in the big pool. The pool water was freezing! The bottom is buckling in places. Every hard rain the the grassy areas flooded. This sent Public works there every single rain. Great use of their time. I don't have statistics but use of the pool has gone down due to these issues. I say this as someone who has spent nearly every single summer day at the Mt .lebanon pool for the last 15 years.

Also, the concession is not run by Mt. Lebanon. It is rented out like most other concession areas.

I dislike the overage and stupidity of the bidding. Other than the bidding process, how could costs have been lower? The new pool plan is greatly improved, but not nearly as audacious as USC facilities. Do you all forget the rec center proposal from about 8 years ago? I thought that was 10 million.

Anonymous said...

"The ongoing investigation and witness statements indicate that the teen was driving northbound, when the man attempted to cross mid-block, in an area where there are no crosswalks", Lt. Lauth said.

Maybe people should learn to NOT cross the street in the middle of the road. How hard is it to walk to an intersection and press the button to get a walk sign. This had nothing to do with how dark it was 12:32.

Anonymous said...

This PR article from the liberal agenda laden Lebomag cracks me up regarding the indoctrination of our high school students.

http://lebomag.com/15425/guess-what-day-it-is/


"The Energy Camel Project will engage Mt. Lebanon high school students in an ESB outreach program that encourages water and energy conservation by using “fun” to help change human behavior patterns.

Wonder why the ESB isn't reaching out to educate high school students as well about the  impact of artificial turf on their health and the environment?

On page 6 of the following link it states that 1,861 trees would need to be planted to neutralize the carbon impact of artificial turf.
The link also mentions the pollutants such as lead, zinc and others that leech into the storm water systems.

http://www.redhenturf.com/pdfs/TheTruthAboutArtificialTurf.pdf

Maybe the ESB can come up with plastic pigs to set up on the the lawns of turf proponents as part of their indoctrination program.

Anonymous said...

Really, 1:08? The police officer said the man was wearing dark clothing and the driver was driving an SUV. I'm sure the man blindly walked into the road. Wonder what kind of SUV? Daddy's Escalade maybe? What 17 year old can afford an SUV? Can't wait for the toxicology to come back on the driver. Maybe the kid has ADHD.

It was a horrible incident for both driver and victim. I feel terrible for both, but I suspect the 17 year old wasn't paying attention. Screw anyone that makes a mistake that might have stepped out in between the cars. Who hasn't done that getting take-out at S. Inn?

Maybe people should learn to cross at the crosswalks? That's a great excuse for the accident. You're an ass 1:08.

Guess you don't remember Lisa Styles.

Anonymous said...

1:08 this isn't a comment on last night's tragedy, but rather an observation on street crossing in Lebo in general.
I constantly see joggers and walkers assume the right-of-way. They may have it (though this mornings observed incidence had a jogger proceeding against the Do Not Walk sign at a dark busy intersection) but being right doesn't provide much protection against a 3,000 lb vehicle that might not see them.
I wonder what ever happen to the training of "stop and look both ways before crossing" advice?

Anonymous said...

12:59 I don't disagree with you that the pool sucked, and that is Sucked with a capital S.
But, something strikes me as odd, how do area country clubs like Rolling Hills, South Hills, Churchill, Westmoreland, Sewickley, Bower Hill Swim Club keep their pools in such good shape? Many are from the 1960s, 70s or earlier.
As for the concession stand is that an acceptable excuse?
Just because its a municipal pool do we have to accept - awful food, high prices and less than clean facilities?
New pool or not, I won't pay to swim there.

Anonymous said...

My bad 1:08. The poor kid, not from Lebo, was driving a Jeep Liberty.

Still I strongly disagree light could have been a factor. It happened at 8:30 pm.

My anger and adding these comments to this blog entry may seem misplaced, but they are not.

I come to this blog and the entries made by Elaine are true.

How powerless do many of us feel?

I know I do. I am already working on my own to change things, but it may be too late to undo some damage.

I am disenchanted with My. Lebanon as of late. I'm pissed off that public officials and key leaders are seemingly corrupt. I'm pissed off you can't walk across the street without someone mowing you down. People just don't friggin care.

Perhaps this is the reality of learning what truly drives politics. We are all Americans yet people come here spewing hate for democrats or republicans. I think Elaine has purported that the divide in Lebo is not necessarily between democrats and republicans but liberals and conservatives. I don't think Elaine has ever revealed her political party on this blog. I will admit the rulers of this Kingdom Lebo are seemingly democrats, however their actions have nothing to do with politics but with personal agendas. Misuse of power is abundant here.

To add to a previous comment saying the the government should rule for the majority we MUST not forget that it should also not be at the expense of a few. That's what makes us human. Everyone matters.

How can a few stand up against a racing, heavy SUV? That is the situation here in Lebo.

J

E. T. Gillen said...

4:52 PM, it is pretty well known that I was running on the Republican ballot in May 2011. I have also expressed my frustration with the Mt. Lebanon Republican Committee. I don't think it is a secret that I am a Republican. I don't care if someone is an R or a D. I just want them to be fair and fiscally responsible with our tax dollars.
Elaine

Anonymous said...

None of us really know the details of the accident because the individual could have been thrown from the crosswalk in front of Washington Elementary. The police are relying on witnesses and accident reconstruction specialists to figure out the details.

Motorists rarely stop for pedestrians who are attempting to use the mid block crosswalk in the 700 block. Law enforcement of this issue is nonexistent.

Speeding is an issue, jaywalking is an issue, distractions are an issue. We need enforcement of ALL these issues not just one.

Washington Road shouldn't be driven like it's a highway when it possesses the majority of our pedestrian traffic, schools, a library, residences, doctors offices, etc.




Anonymous said...

The country clubs are in poor financial shape relative to previous decades.

Anonymous said...

5:11 that is true and is more a comment on the economy, Sarbane-Oxley and corporate taxes etc.
Of the clubs I've had the opportunity to visit they STILL keep and maintain their facilities in pristine condition.

Anonymous said...

Getting back to municipal spending.

Isn't it funny that Mr. Brumfield had no problem coming up with a plan that charged dog owners a $25/dog permit fee to take their dogs into Williamsburg Park.
A fee that wouldn't pay for any substantial improvements to the park, but just establishes proof that a particular dog can 'go' in the park. Pun intended.

But he, Bendel, Linfante, Fraasch and SAB front man Franklin on the other hand seem to be adverse to even mentioning that field sport participants pay a $25-40 annual surcharge to gurantee partial funding for the installation of $1million+ of artificial turf and higher electric bills that are strictly for the players' benefit.

Anonymous said...

The the fee for Williamsburgh Park was not unreasonable. Many people did not want unknown dogs and owners usinng the park. The "fee" was to keep people honest and license would have been used to identify rule breakers. while anyone could use the park Ward 4 residents only could bring their dog. this was to prevent it from becoming bird park. this is how ward 4 wanted it that wanted dogs in the park. However, most in Ward 4 wanted no dogs.

The fee was not Brumfield's idea.

Anonymous said...

Yes, Elaine. I agree with you. You express frustration but you don't bash either party nor push for one party or another. What you said is what I was trying to express.
J

Anonymous said...

Really 7:04?
Why not just require they carry some form of ID that proves they live in Ward 4?

Anonymous said...

As to the accident, is it not reasonable for a jogger to cross at a crosswalk while wearing reflective clothing? This makes common sense. While on the other hand, everyone knows that drivers do not stop at designated crosswalks on Washington Road!!! It needs to be reinforced! My prayers to the injured jogger and his/ her family!!!

Anonymous said...

i crossed Washington Road this evening using the official crosswalk in front of Washington School at 6:50 PM. It was dark. Although the southbound lane driver stopped for me, when I reached the middle where the pedestrian sign is only one of the two northbound drivers stopped. I yelled loudly to get the driver to stop.

I am tired of taking my life in my hands every time I cross the road there. Hey Commissioners, this is more important to me than deer or turf! Does my safety matter to you?

E. T. Gillen said...

This morning, I was driving northbound on Washington Rd., and saw a man measuring the distance between each line in the Washington School crosswalk. I also saw two women boldly walking across the street at the crosswalk. I would never do that because rarely drivers stop for pedestrians waiting to cross. I yell at the drivers too, 8:58 PM.
Elaine

Anonymous said...

Yes, 7:27, REALLY! The fee was about the only good thing I saw in the proposal. Don't get me wrong, I am totally against dogs in any parks kids play in.

There are many pay as you use dog parks throughout the country, especially NYC. Though Williamsburgh was not a proposal for a dog park.

There was already proof of irresponsible dog owners being in the park, not cleaning up after their pooches, peeing on play equipment licking the water fountain that kids then drank from.

The fee was per dog. Not per owner. Dog sitters could not bring their guest dogs to the parks. No one wanted unfamiliar dogs in a neighborhood park circling equipment built for 2-10 year olds. There was to be a cap on the amount of dogs. Williamsburgh did not need to be every dog's shitting ground.

Can you see the bigger picture for the resident's of Ward 4, 7:27?
But bottom line, they couldn't enforce the new rules so it didn't fly.

I'm no defender of Mr. B, but the fee in that case was for good reason. Accountability. It was for incessant whiners complaining "oh, my dog wouldn't do THAT! I'm a responsible dog owner" to put their money where their mouth is.

It's been over for months now, can we move on?


J

Anonymous said...

Elaine, do you or your readers know when the mid-block crosswalk was painted? It wasn't painted all summer long as I believe Mt Lebanon may have been waiting until the upgrades were in place. Does anyone know?

Also, it wasn't a jogger that was hit yesterday. The man was wearing heavy boots, akin to what a construction worker might wear.

While I agree that reflective clothing at night is definitely helpful, drivers are still reckless as they drive right into houses, TACO Bell (this recently happened on Cochran Road), and other well lit stationary and large obstacles. Also, some people are walking home from work or other places and it doesn't seem right to ask them to change from their suits to neon reflective clothing to accommodate the fact that drivers need to be more careful.

Last night, I stood at an intersection waiting for a driver to make eye contact with me before I proceeded through the intersection. However, he never did because his eyes and hands were glued to his phone where he was texting. The color of my clothing would not have helped had I crossed the road. I didn't cross until he was gone.

E. T. Gillen said...

I do, 11:02 PM. I complained about the missing crosswalk at a couple of commission meetings. The crosswalks were painted by PennDot right before Labor Day.
Elaine

E. T. Gillen said...

Getting back to Mt. Lebanon recreation, the PG had a timely article in today's paper.

http://www.post-gazette.com/news/education/2013/11/20/Survey-More-Pennsylvania-school-districts-require-payment-for-playing-sports/stories/201311200143

With more school districts charging more fees for sports and other activities, including MTLSD, why would they be willing to spend $7000 a year to maintain the Middle and Wildcat turf?

Another thing, I don't really care if the directors of Public Works and Recreation, the high school baseball coach or the Mt. Lebanon Athletic Director support Bendel's Field Enhancement Proposal. Why wouldn't they? Ask a teenager if he or she would support a parent who wants to buy a car for him or her. Be real, John.
Elaine

Anonymous said...

J @ 11:01, you missed the point entirely.
I didn't say I thought the fee was a good idea or not, or whether Brumfield came up with it or not.
He made a fee part of his plan for Williamsburg that didn't include any substantial financial outlay by the municipality to accomadate dog walkers.
Now they are talking about turfing a field for a million bucks and the concept of asking for a token $25/user isn't even brought up.
That was the point.

Anonymous said...

11:02 makes a great point about crossing a street or intersection even if you have the right-of-way.
Stop, look both ways to see if its clear. If not, don't proceed out until your assured the driver sees you and is going to stop.
How hard is that and isn't that something we pound into our very young kids all the time?

Anonymous said...

12:27 When the southbound car stops to let you cross, it's time to go. That's what is wrong with the crosswalk because two of the three lanes stopped. One would think the other car would get the hint and stop, but they didn't. Plus, it's dark at night in the crosswalk. There is a lame street light high above the crosswalk that provides little lighting. Also, not crossing when cars have stopped for you doesn't make sense. It's not a simple matter of looking both ways.

There was discussion about installing a safety system there, but nothing happened.

Anonymous said...

8:27 just before, after and during rush hour I agree it is extremely tough to get across that part of Washington Road and I really don't have any solutions to offer.
But, during off hours the lights seem to be timed that there are windows of opportunity for pedestrians to cross without stepping into traffic.
Unfortunately everyone pedestrians, drivers are too tied up in their little worlds to wait.
I believe Lebomag conducted a poll not so long ago and pedestrians rated fairly high as a hazard to driving in MTL.

Anonymous said...

12:22. Thank you for clarifying. I didn't miss your point, but I think its a bad example to use. There was so much misinformation thrown out there about the pilot program for Williamsburgh. The whole pilot program was a ruse to change the ordinance. There were no measurables for pass/fail. To bring up just the $25 is like saying only that portion was wrong with the plan. the whole pilot plan was to change an ordinance. It was a ruse to gag the people that didnt want it.

Do you know the actual "plan" voted on was to allow dogs in all parks before 9:00 AM and at any time after dark?

What's really comparable with Williamsburgh and turf is that the same players are behind it. Dave was doing it for his friends, but then it blew up in his face necause his friends lied to him about any opposition.

If you don't want turf stand up and fight it, although now it may be too late. The commissioners DO NOT reach out to us so I suggest write a letter to the commission@mtlebanon.org and show up to the meeting Nov. 25th. If you truly don't agree at least you'll be on record with your opinion. Again I am not defending Dave. He made his own bed.

Did you know that out of the 900 people that voted in Ward 4, 200 purposely did not vote for Dave? He would not have won if there was an opponent.

Sorry for going off topic, I just don't want misinformation out there about such a topic that has permanently divided Ward 4.

Anonymous said...

9:12 You quoted Lebomag with this:
"I believe Lebomag conducted a poll not so long ago and pedestrians rated fairly high as a hazard to driving in MTL.".

But, I am wondering... how many pedestrians have killed or maimed drivers?

Anonymous said...

Elaine, with the sidewalk construction I would have liked to have seen brick crosswalks along 19. This would have marked where mt Lebanon begins and ends. Pretty stupid to fix all those sidewalks for wheelchair access and not a chance someone with a cane, walker, wheelchair or blind person would make it across alive.
In addition, uptown Mt. Lebanon looks pretty trashy compared to towns I've seen. It's attrocious how close the new hotel is to the road.

Anonymous said...

9:12 Sorry, but the lights are not properly timed after rush hour. Try it and see for yourself.

Anonymous said...

10:56 I don't care about the Williamsburg Park dog ordinance, it over and done with.
I do agree with your comments about the players and the agendas.
Brumfield and pals are all about filling their little personal troughs on the taxpayers dime.
The point is - once again - they want their turf and they won't discuss a mandatory $25 fee from the players because they know they'll lose support.
LeboFields couldn't even round up a respectible count on their petition for turfing. Imagine what support they'd get from the families of those 3,600 athletes if turf had a price tag attached.
Bet natural grass with some improved maintenance would suit the majority just fine.

Anonymous said...

A suggestion.
Would installing decorative fencing in the area where the accident occur that forced pedestrians into crossing at the designated 'well-lit' crosswalk help rather than leaving everyong guessing what the others intentions are?
Just a thought.

Anonymous said...

Addition to my suggestion on fencing.
Would it be possible to install yellow diamond warning signs that pedestrians could activate that flashed 'Stop for Pedestrians' alerting drivers of their responsibility?

Anonymous said...

The entire field project is being paid for out of the unassigned funds/overtaxes. $250,000 are listed as non-municipal contributions. I wonder where they are coming from? lol Additionally, $150,00 are anticipated from 2014 unassigned funds which means they are intentionally anticipating an overtaxing of residents to fund the turfed field. The unassigned funds are to be used for a capital expenditure of some kind sooooooooooooooooooo, Why not offset the 17% increase from ALCOSAN with unassigned funds and give the residents a break of some kind. Instead of issuing new debt for the Lindendale project, why not use unassigned funds. Big structural issue there. The turf is going to go through, no doubt, but it is a long term plan with long term lasting results that both new and old residents should pay for. It should be in the projected bond issue. This should not come from the unassigned funds. There are probably a few other things that the money would be better spent on,i.e. the crosswalk that 11:42 refers to, but financial foresight is not an attribute that the commission possesses. The best way to spend the money is to present a budget that does not over tax the residents of Mt. Lebanon!!!

Anonymous said...

Funny that the prospect of someone dying because of an interaction with deer demands immediate attention from the commissioners.
But here we have a pedestrian/car incident in a bad area that could've been deadly and the commissioners are going to divert unassigned funds... not to saving lives, but rather turf deer surveys.
Go figure.

Anonymous said...

11:42 and 1:30, back in September the Commission approved the use of $63,000 in unassigned funds to install in-pavement flashers and Rectangular Rapid Flash Beacons (RRFB) at the Washington School mid-block crosswalk. I assume that work is in progress (i.e. bids, etc.) and will be completed in due course.

Dave Franklin

Anonymous said...

Thank you Mr. Franklin for the information, that is good to hear though with the recent incident perhaps going into the short days of winter the project should be done with haste before another person gets hurt.
The flashers and beacons though will do nothing to deter or protect J walkers that cross in non-designated areas.
As 11:02 ppinted out in their last sentence, sometimes you must, absolutely must take the initative to guarantee your own safety.

Bruce said...

Just so we are clear here. This pool "renovation" is just that, renovation of the old pool. It does not replace the pool, it only adds to it. In 2007, they told us the pool was hopeless and HAD to be replaced. Now, a new set of engineering guru's have determined the old pool is just fine, we just need to spend a lot of money to make it prettier. Wonder what they will tell us in 5 or 10 yrs. when they decide yet again the pool needs replaced? It's only money folks.

Anonymous said...

Good point Bruce.
$4.2 million seems lkie a helluva lot of money to "renovate" the old pool that was suppposedly obsolete in 2007.
Also are the off bid items like the climbing wall for the pool still moving forward?

Anonymous said...

September, October....thanks for the info Dave. Could you find out more for us or if the funds for it got diverted?

Anonymous said...

No way! The old pool liner is staying? For 4+ million? Something is way off!

Anonymous said...

Could someone dig up the numbers for the new rec center plan from 8 or so years ago? I don't know where to look.

Anonymous said...

I can understand the inclination toward turf due to recurring problems with field conditions. However, I still don't think it's the solution. I think Mt Lebanon should invest in learning how to grow the right grass, invest in the irrigation, provide the care, and manage playtime on the field so that the natural turf can flourish. Even if we have to hire master gardeners, I'd rather see that solution for a number of reasons.

Can our Commissioners look at the decision to increase costs to families and taxpayers within the context that not all families are doing well in this economy? The more pressure that is applied to families to "pay to play", "fundraise", etc., the more youth sports becomes a "rich-get-richer" environment, as described by Doug Glanville in Time magazine.

The more Mt Lebanon continues to force residents to pay higher or new fees for previously tax-covered services, the more the gap will widen and eventually, even the rich kids will suffer because some of their athletic friends won't play and membership may decline. What will happen to the turf fields if the sports leagues can't make ends meet?

Issues that divide Mt Lebanon families while also providing increased financial pressure contribute to the risk that those kids drop out of the mainstream and engage in the high-risk behavior that the MLPD is now addressing by hiring a police officer devoted solely to drug enforcement.

Anonymous said...

7:32 perhaps this link might help your seach:
http://bloglebo.blogspot.com/2007/10/commissioner-john-daley-newsletter-part_02.html?m=1

Part 1 also has interesting info on deer culling.

Anonymous said...

How much did the Aqua Club have in this pool? The screwed up the last one and taxpayers paid for their mistakes. How much money was made from renting it out for swim meets? ZERO!!! Guess who belongs to Aqua Club? Dave B are you out there??????

Anonymous said...

Sorry folks but I disagree about the outdoor pool. I think memories are really short here. The town was pushing hard to rip it out and turn it into a waterpark (aka like Sand Castle). Susan Morgens led one of the "brainstorming" sessions where she literally gave a conclusion that was not supported by our group. Our group wanted a pool similar to what is there with a heater and having the two kid sections closer. That's it. And it is what EVERY group in that public meeting concluded.

Also, a number of us pressed really hard at this concept that the pool was ready to be put to pasture and sound thinking took over and when they hired experts (and not pool consultants) to look at it they discovered it was in good shape.

So they are renovating the pool though I'm a little disappointed in the cost increase and I don't understand that. Also, they are doing a big upgrade to the bath house which I think is unnecessary. That is where I think a lot of the costs are coming in.

In terms of the pool itself, a heater is really needed. Because it is aluminum the temperature really fluctuates a lot. It is freezing and almost unusable on the warm days when the nights are still cool. (Masters swimmer here...one of the loonies that swims at 5:15 AM.)

Again, I think we need to be careful and look at this in the big picture. This is actually one where the powers that be lost their gambit to spend unnecessarily and instead are not spending recklessly (overall). Do I wish they had kept to the original budget? Yes. But was some spend on the pool necessary? I do believe so.

Now the Taj Mahal of a high school...that's another story.

Anonymous said...

5:!5 A. M. swimming services for residents that require a heated pool are crazy. I just lost my appetite for taxes, Go find another pool that is open at 5:15 A.M. We have a school board that is trying to save energy and a commission that is wasting energy on a heated pool. One bunch of D's need to coordinate with the other bunch of D's.

I think this proves we have a dysfunctional municipal government.