Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Girty's Run Flooding Is State Issue, Officials Tell Residents

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Girty's Run Flooding Is State Issue, Officials Tell Residents

Article excerpt

Residents and business owners in and around the Babcock Boulevard corridor near Girty's Run in Ross are still looking for answers on the creek's repeated flooding.

The trouble is that they're turning to local officials, and local officials say they don't have answers to give.

Flooding from Girty's Run can damage properties in Ross, Reserve, Shaler and Millvale. Yet the responsibility for its maintenance and any possible flood prevention projects does not, according to local representatives, fall on the municipalities.

"The stream and the responsibility for streams and issues like this are a state matter," Ross Commissioner Dan DeMarco said at a meeting last week on the area's flooding problems.

"If there is to be anything to be pursued with Girty's Run, it's something that's going to take a tremendous amount of money, a tremendous amount of money from the state."

DeMarco said if the state decided to address the flooding, it would likely work with the Army Corps of Engineers to develop possible solutions.

Ross Engineer Art Gazdik said the Corps has assessed the area before and found that the damage here was too little to justify investment in a flood-prevention project.

In the eyes of some residents attending, though, the flooding could be addressed by slowing development in around McKnight Road, reorganizing regulatory bodies, turning to the Girty's Run Sewer Authority, or dredging Girty's Run itself.

"Development in this area has got to stop," said Paul Shepherd, a bus driver who travels the area. He suggested a moratorium on development by Ross, Shaler and McCandless, where the creek's headwaters lie.

He also called for a new level of cooperation among local governments to start addressing the flood problem.

"The fighting between municipalities, water authorities, Ross and West View, it's got to stop," Shepherd said. …

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