$2.3 million awarded for Luzerne road, park projects

HARRISBURG, Nov. 14 – State Rep. Gerald Mullery and state Sen. John Yudichak said three Luzerne County projects today were approved to receive $2.3 million in state grants to build access roads and improve local parks.

“By working together, local and state government officials are able to provide improved economic development and recreational opportunities for their businesses and residents. Today’s funding announcement is a great step for the local communities and I congratulate them on receiving these grants,” Mullery said.

The Earth Conservancy will receive $2 million from the Multimodal Transportation Fund Program to build three access roads in Hanover Township and Nanticoke to ensure development of three reclaimed properties by connecting the properties to the South Valley Parkway. The total project cost is $3.18 million.

“The Earth Conservancy has done a tremendous job reclaiming mine-scarred lands and returning those lands back to constructive use as community-building economic development and conservation projects,” Yudichak said. “Strategic public investments in infrastructure like the South Valley Parkway and its access points has already leveraged over $100 million in private investment, from companies like Northpoint, that will lead to the creation of thousands of jobs in the South Valley and along the I-81 corridor.” 

Two grants were acquired through the Greenways, Trails and Recreation Program.

Hazle Township plans to use its $165,000 grant to build a walking trail around Lake Irena and a pedestrian bridge over the tributary to the lake in the community park. Work also will include building a new pavilion and installing handicap swings and wood mulch safety surface under the new and existing playground equipment. The total project cost is $195,000.

Larksville will make several improvements to Romanoskey Park with its $155,355 grant. Those include paving the parking lot as well as walkways within the park to make the park, restroom and viewing areas accessible for the elderly and people with disabilities. The work also includes a new basketball court, playground area and equipment and improvements to the baseball and softball fields. The total project cost is $182,771.

The grants were approved by the state’s Commonwealth Financing Authority, which is an independent arm of the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development charged with identifying and supporting projects to improve the quality of life and financial health in communities around the state.