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#1 Cochran Discusses Plans for West Liberty Ave.

Representatives from #1 Cochran and others discussed plans for development on West Liberty Avenue during Monday’s meeting.

A special meeting hosted by representative of #1 Cochran on Monday night took some of the mystery out of proposed plans for the West Liberty Avenue corridor in Dormont.

Rob Cochran, president and CEO of #1 Cochran, shared the business’s anticipated plan of development in the South Hills for the next 12 months.

The proposed plan includes construction of a Volkswagen showroom by the fall of 2012, a #1 Cochran South Hills Service and Collision Center in Castle Shannon by late summer of 2012 and site improvements to the Nissan center, as well as a new Nissan showroom on West Liberty Avenue. A new Infiniti showroom next to the Nissan site also is proposed.

Of those projects, the only definite plans are for the Nissan development. Construction on that project is expected to begin this spring. The design has been tailored to foster better navigation around the site and improve the customer experience, Cochran said.

“The investment is significant,” Cochran said. “We’ve gone back and forth about how we can engineer so this makes sense. I think the finished product is something we all can be proud of.”

In Dormont, the development would be along West Liberty Avenue, on parcels of land located between McFarland Road and Park Avenue. Those parcels of land currently are owned by #1 Cochran, Dormont Borough and the Port Authority of Allegheny County.

Bill Krahe, president of Grand View Development Company, said a meeting with the public about #1 Cochran’s plans was long overdue, particularly given the number of entities involved. Grand View is #1 Cochran's developer for the projects.

The business’s development plan has been in the works for about two years, and Krahe said #1 Cochran and its associates had asked the borough several times if such a meeting with the public could be arranged.

None had been scheduled until Monday’s meeting, when most residents in attendance said it was the first time they were hearing about the plans and learning who was involved.

Cochran said there is a large infrastructure investment in the projects, and the business’s goal is to provide exceptional customer experience through service and facilities, but also to be a good corporate partner to the borough. He said he thinks #1 Cochran has lived up to that so far.

“I know when we look at the last seven years here, I’m sure there are some mistakes that we’ve made,” Cochran said. “Going forward, it’s important for us that when people see us, they say ‘that’s a company that does the right things,’ or at least, tries to do the right things most of the time.”

Continue to follow Dormont-Brookline Patch for more information about #1 Cochran’s development plans.

Ed M February 14, 2012 at 12:09 PM
I hope this plan will not eliminate any parking from the borough or the PAT lot behind the dealership.
Erin Faulk February 14, 2012 at 02:19 PM
Hi Ed M, I'll address that in a followup article, coming soon. The short answer though, is that during the meeting it sounded like there would be at least a temporary elimination of some parking during construction, and a loss of about 30 parking spaces on West Liberty Avenue. However, a mixed-use structure that includes a parking garage is in the proposed plans for the PAT lot, which would replace the spaces lost. I'm still sorting through my notes from last night, but I'll try to get something up quickly.
MSgt. John DeLallo February 14, 2012 at 03:37 PM
This is meant to be a snarky comment, so if it irritates some folks, that's a good thing. A parking garage! Imagine that. You'll find that's a recurring gripe for me, as there is plenty of real estate available for such garages. I'm betting the businesses nearest the corner of McFarland and West Liberty can't wait. I bet that guy with the side view mirror dangling off of his SUV the other night can't wait either. It was inevitable, as he was parked halfway into the travel lanes on West Liberty, and no, I didn't whack him. How about that, though, the boro manager and solicitor retire and the garage becomes a reality. Maybe we ought not to replace them.
Mary Pernatozzi February 15, 2012 at 07:08 PM
The businesses on West Liberty Ave nearest the corner mcFarland dont want the parking to be sold. Why should we suffer to convince Cochran. We were Here FIRST!! The business suffer now because there is limited Parking. Try telling your coustomers,that they will have to park two or more blocks down the street if they want to shop at you business. and it will be small so its first come first serve. surely this will hurt the businesses who rely on the direct parking accross the street. Parking garage? we dont see this happening to soon.
MSgt. John DeLallo February 16, 2012 at 07:16 AM
Mary: Continuous hell raising by concerned citizens is the only way you are going to see a garage. P3 legislation that passed the PA House today addresses such infrastructure. The money is there. Go to council meetings and scream to the high heavens.
Mary Pernatozzi February 20, 2012 at 08:47 PM
This is not about a proposed parking garage. This is about saveing the CURRENT Businesses on West Liberty Ave Who NEED THIS PARKING LOT that is on the corner of Washington and Mcfarland road. We sure hope that dormont does not sell Us out.
Ronald Ragghianti February 22, 2012 at 05:14 AM
Do the math. South Hills Beauty Academy has 80 students and 5 teachers. Diskriters ha 40 employees. Lets average the other 20 businesses with 4 workers per business including Cain's and the new Asian restaurant. There are at least 14 apartments with 2 persons per apartment - that's about 233 people. So if 1/3 of the business employees drive to work, that equals 77 cars that need to park in the suggested 40 car lot. This leaves 37 cars to park on the street. Without any room for clients, customers, and guests to park, it wont be long until you see many vacancies popping up along this business strip. This particular block was just populated with several new businesses and many which have recently remodeled. We should remember that it is the small, local businesses that make up and sustain Dormont and we should do our best to protect their rights.
Mary Pernatozzi February 22, 2012 at 08:06 PM
Ronald, Yes you are right. The current businesses are bringing LONG TERM Clients in to dormont who solicit all surounding businesses on a daily basis. The Sunco's the CVS the Pizza shops the Hair Salons the bars and restaurants etc: When I go to buy a car at a delership I stop in, I look, perhaps buy, drive away leave not to return to that neighborhood again.
Lisa March 08, 2012 at 01:28 AM
So this article says the Cochran dealer has proposed several project for the area. Does anyone know what is being proposed by the Rohrich Dealer that is tearing down everything next to the Hyundai dealer on West Liberty?
MSgt. John DeLallo March 08, 2012 at 03:39 PM
The site of the old Long John Silver's was addressed at the regular council meeting, and of course Rohrich plans to expand. I'd refer to the minutes to see how that went. I was distracted at the time.
Mary Pernatozzi March 27, 2012 at 03:47 PM
Friday March 23 I had 20 VIP clients from the Think Pink Organization visit our business for services. The parking Lot on West Liberty and McFarland Road was the only place I could recommend they park that was well located to my business. The parking lot was full of people who may not have ever visited Dormont. I Hope that Dormont does not swap or sell this lot. Our businesses depend on it.

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