Clarendon proposal may be good fit

It will be interesting to hear Clarendon residents’ thoughts on a proposal to rezone the former Allegheny Valley Elementary School property from residential to business transitional makes a lot of sense.

Such spot zoning is something that typically should be avoided because it can create problems. But the projected uses for the former school building — and its difficulty to be turned into a completely residential building — may make the spot zoning acceptable in this case as long as neighbors aren’t upset.

As discussed last week, Clarendon officials plan to move their offices into the building, use the former school as a voting precinct and a transitional homeless shelter for veterans. There is room for 32 veterans’ rooms on the second floor of the old school building and room for 50 to 55 veterans overall. Veterans would be identified to be housed in the building if they say they are homeless when they enter a VA Hospital in Pittsburgh, Erie or Buffalo and could stay up to two years in the transitional housing while they find stable housing and gain skills to earn more money. If approved, the transitional housing project could be open within two years.

This is an interesting project that could help a lot of veterans. The county Planning Commission’s decision to recommend the zoning change is a good one.


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