The owners of the Pittsburgh Ballet House on Rowan Road are planning to pick up their barres and slippers and move to a new location less than a mile away.
At Monday’s planning commission meeting, officials OK’d plans for the ballet school, founded by instructor Kwang-suk Choi, to move into the former Safari Sam’s building at the intersection of Rowan Road and Route 19.
Already home to Advance Auto Parts and Burton’s Total Pet, the retail plaza is owned by the Viola family. The family also own Rowan Towers, the building on Rowan Road where the Pittsburgh Ballet Company has leased space for at least four years.
David Lucci, an architect with Victor-Wetzel Associates, the Sewickley-based firm working with the Viola family, said a public hearing for the plans was needed because a private recreaction and entertainment facility is a conditional, and not a permitted, use for the building.
Now that the planning commission has given it the go ahead, the dance plans will next go before the Cranberry Board of Supervisors for final approval.
Lucci said Choi, a former principal dancer with the Pittsburgh Ballet Company, is moving to a new facility because he needs more room for his growing studio.
Choi’s current studio on the second floor of Rowan Towers is about 1,520 square feet of space, Lucci said. The new studio, which will be located on the second floor of the former Safari Sam’s building, will give Choi, whose wife also is an instructor at the studio, about 2,740 square feet of studio.
Those aren’t the only changes coming to the building. The Viola family recently took down the yellow sign that spelled out Market House in large letters. The sign for the former grocery store, which once was located in the building, stood for many years near the intersection of Rowan Road and Route 19.
Lucci said he’s not sure what marker will replace the old Market House sign. He added the Pittsburgh Ballet House could be moved into its new location sometime in September.