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Cranberry Planning Commission Continues to Examine Plans for New North Catholic High School

The township's planning staff will recommend that the board delay plans for the high school at next week's regular meeting.

Cranberry planning officials continue to examine plans for the proposed new North Catholic High School to be built along 65 acres on Route 228 near the border with Seven Fields.

After earlier this month, planning commission members at Monday's workshop meeting looked over revised plans for the school, which removed future space for a stadium and other potential developments from the renderings.

Still, Ron Henshaw, Cranberry’s director of community development, said there are more issues that need addressed in the plans. Henshaw said he and township staff will recommend that officials again delay approval of the plans when the planning commission meets for its March 5 regular meeting.

Civil & Environmental Consultants Inc. in Pittsburgh is overseeing land
planning for the diocese.

Henshaw said developers would present the board with different options for alignment of a new road the school proposes to build in the hopes of easing traffic. The yet unnamed roadway would lead from an intersection with Franklin Road and connect with Old Mars Crider Road.

Up next, Cranberry's staff will meet with planning officials from Seven Fields about the project. Henshaw said he also would meet with Seven Fields residents who live near the entrance to the school’s new site and have expressed concern about the additional traffic the school might add to the road.

“We’ve got a lot of work to do before next Monday,” he said.

If the planning commission approves the plans, they would next go before Cranberry’s board of supervisors for final approval.

Supervisors already have given their approval for developers to begin grading 37 acres at the school’s future home.

Michael Arnold, chief facilities officer for the Pittsburgh diocese, has said the plan is to begin grading the wooded land in March and begin building construction by May.

The school is to open in time for the 2013-14 school year, although Arnold said an auditorium, library and other areas not used for classrooms or administrative space might be added in later phases of construction.

The 175,000 square-foot high school, which will accommodate about 1,000 students, is the largest building project that the Diocese of Pittsburgh has undertaken in recent history.

 In 2010, the diocese announced plans to close the school’s building in Pittsburgh's Troy Hill and move programs to Cranberry in response to population growth and shifts in the North Hills.

Frank C. Brace February 28, 2012 at 08:55 PM
I really do not think that the estimated enrollment will not reach the 1,000 that people think Also, there has been NO report as to what the tuition will be. I suspect that it willbe PROHIBITIVE. Sincerely, Frank C. Brace Class of '49.
dan Sterzinger February 28, 2012 at 09:24 PM
Every time you go to cranberry,there is a new develpoment,and they go right onto 228.They never seems to be a problem with those building.Look at westinghouse?There are more people working there ,than will be at North Catholic.To Mr Brace,what would you like to see North close for good.They will have no problem reaching the 1000 Dan Sterzinger Class of 69
Terry Cronin February 29, 2012 at 01:13 PM
I guess it is OK to build hotels, restaurants and retail along 228 but when it comes to education and a new high school, a question of traffic congestion arises. Where were these concerns when the new Hilton Garden Inn was approved. It is right across from the new school. Is there more to Cranberry/7 Fields concerns? Dan is correct, North will have no problem having 1,000 students. Terry Cronin, Class of 75.
Michele Jackson March 21, 2012 at 02:18 PM
Let's look at the big picture. This is a great opportunity for all, the education of our children, growth in the local economy, including increased revenues for businesses, jobs and taxes. The politics need to stop and people need to work together to make this happen. There should be no problem having 1,000 students; schools are challenged how to handle the continuing growth in population. Michele Jackson, daughter of Alumni Class of '49.

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