June 27, 2008

$4 Million Sought for Work at Army Reserve Site in Moon

By Sam Spatter

A mix of parks, recreational facilities, commercial development and residential housing are new uses envisioned for property now occupied by the Charles E. Kelly Support Facility in Collier and a related military facility on Neville Island.

To that end, the Redevelopment Authority of Allegheny County on Wednesday voted to seek $4 million in federal funds to develop a new commissary and exchange stores facility on the 99th Army Reserve Command Center site in Moon. The commissary and exchange must be relocated from Collier because the Defense Base Closure and Realignment Commission decided to shut down the existing Kelly center.

The commissary -- a discount grocery store for active, reserve and retired military personnel and their dependents -- and the exchange stores will continue to operate until the new facilities are built. Exchange stores -- often called PKs -- provide meals, clothing, toys and non-grocery items.

"The U.S. Army projects that they will be off the base in September 2009," said Patrick Earley, manager of development for the county Department of Economic Development.

Once the county gains control of the 133-acre support site, plans call for redeveloping the three parcels for different uses.

On the main post, about 80 percent of the 118 acres would be developed as parks and recreation. The remainder would be a mixture of commercial and retail.

Another 11 acres near the Nevillwood residential community could be developed as a residential site, with up to 18 single-family units.

Also, 15 acres on Neville Island, which is part of the Kelly complex, likely will remain industrial, said Andrew JG Schwartz, managing principal, Environmental Planning & Design, who assisted in development of the plan for re-use of the properties.

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