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Donora Industrial Park gets $2M grant for expansion

The money will fund construction of an industrial building on a vacant 12-acre plot of land.

A manufacturing company in the Donora Industrial Park will receive a $2 million grant to expand thanks to a state-funded grant.

State officials announced Friday the Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program (RACP) awarded a $2 million grant to the Mon Valley Alliance to develop property in the Donora Industrial Park.

MVA oversees the development of three industrial parks in Washington County: Alta Vista Business Park in Fallowfield Township, Donora Industrial Park and Speers Industrial Park. The alliance also heads the 14-member Mid Mon Valley Regional Enterprise Zone.

The money will fund construction of an industrial building on a vacant, 12-acre plot of land in the park. The building will expand confectionery manufacturer Barchemy, which currently operates near the lot.

The grant culminated as a collective effort of the Washington County Commissioner’s office, the Mon Valley Alliance and state Sen. Camera Bartolotta, R-Carroll Township.

“I am excited to help continue to reshape the Mon Valley and to support the Mon Valley Alliance in that initiative,” Bartolotta said. “This funding, as well as grants that were recently awarded to the 46th District, will help boost the local economy all across southwestern Pennsylvania. The Mon Valley Alliance does really transformative work, and I am pleased this grant will aid in their efforts.”

MVA CEO Jamie Colecchi said he was happy with the support they received from cooperating agencies. “It’s a project we’ve been working on with the Redevelopment Authority for some time,” Colecchi said. “Together we determined this was the best use for the remaining area in the park."

“Camera’s office has been really open and supportive with a lot of our projects. I’m really grateful – and not surprised – for her help. The county commission has been really supportive of our work too. (Vice Chairman) Larry Maggi put a call in with the governor personally on this one.”

The development grant coincides with recent collaboration between MVA and Donora leaders. Over the past few months, Mayor Don Pavelko and Donora council have worked with the nonprofit to win state grants to remove blight in the borough.

“There are two sides to the success of Donora,” Colecchi said. “One is jobs; the other is people. If you have success on one side of the tracks, you’ll build that social and economic momentum on the other. We want to make sure both sides of the tracks improve.”

Colecchi said the project managers intend to follow an aggressive timeline on the project.

“We’ll likely start the project before the grant is even executed,” he said. “We’re hoping to have it done by the end of 2023 or early 2024.”

RACP is a statewide grant program run by the Office of the Budget for the acquisition and construction of regional economic, cultural, civic, recreational and historical improvement projects.


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