John M. Barrett

Manager's Message

John M. Barrett
Township Manager

Mar 21

Community spirit alive in local neighborhood

Posted on March 21, 2023 at 11:50 AM by Andrea Iglar

One of my favorite parts of the job is when I have the opportunity to work directly with residents to help solve a problem in their neighborhood.

These moments are especially memorable when citizens are willing to invest their own time and energy.

The spring 2023 issue of South Fayette Connect highlights Parkes Farm Estates, including references to stormwater improvements recently completed in the neighborhood thanks to a partnership between the township and the homeowner association (HOA).

To me, this story is so much more than a stormwater project. This story exemplifies the power of cooperation and the true spirit of community.

Township staff first contacted members of the Parkes Farm HOA to share the unfortunate news that a stormwater detention pond in the neighborhood was not functioning and to notify them that the responsibility to repair and maintain the facility belonged to the HOA, not the township.

At first, the news may have been a bit alarming to the HOA, but as we moved through the process, we were able to form strong working relationships with the residents we met in Parkes Farm. We soon realized the township and the neighborhood were coming from the same place; that is, we both had the best interests of the community at heart.

The township and HOA cooperated to clean up the stormwater pond, inspect the mechanical components of the structure and produce a scope of work to finally have the facility function safely and effectively, as designed, to adequately protect from flooding, erosion and property damage.

When all was said and done, the residents of Parkes Farm put forth a good amount of sweat equity, and the township was able to help the neighborhood diagnose the problem and determine the proper repairs.

This scenario provided genuine benefits to Parkes Farm residents, township officials and the South Fayette community as a whole. It was great to see such community pride and spirit on display as this project progressed, and I am thankful for the experience.

Feb 03

Accomplishments in 2022 set up township for success in new year

Posted on February 3, 2023 at 8:48 AM by Andrea Iglar

Another year is in the books—and it was another great year for South Fayette Township.

We enter 2023 poised to hit the ground running and keep our momentum going.

But before we shut the doors on last year, I would like to take a moment to reflect on our accomplishments.

To some, the year will be remembered as the year we killed the toll bridge proposal. Understanding the negative impacts that would have resulted from PennDOT’s plan to toll the Interstate 79 bridge in South Fayette, township officials took legal action to stop the project before it could begin.

We also saw the long-awaited completion of the Southern Beltway, including four miles within our borders. The Pennsylvania Turnpike’s highway provided South Fayette with a direct connection to Pittsburgh International Airport and opened up hundreds of acres of land to potential development.

Work continued at Fairview Park to expand recreational amenities on the Mayview site. Overall, we secured $1.65 million in grants for park projects in 2022—and that’s on top of the $1 million grant we received the year before.

Perhaps most importantly, we enjoyed opportunities to spend time with friends and neighbors at a dozen outdoor events such as South Fayette Community Day, which returned in August after a two-year pandemic hiatus. More than 15,000 people attended community events in 2022, while 50 local businesses contributed more than $55,000 in support of them.

I am so proud of all the hard work township staff has put into making our community stronger, and I thank our strong network of elected officials, volunteers, first responders and other community leaders for their countless hours of support.

Now, bring on 2023…

Oct 18

Business community thriving in South Fayette

Posted on October 18, 2022 at 9:45 AM by Andrea Iglar

A healthy and vibrant business community is an integral part of a thriving township.

That’s why we are proud not only to welcome additional businesses to South Fayette but also to celebrate established ones.

The fall 2022 issue of South Fayette Connect magazine highlights both new and longstanding businesses in South Fayette, from the family-owned and -operated Schulz Service Center marking 40 years in business to the national chain Firebirds Wood Fired Grill that is set to open a steak and seafood restaurant here in November.

Not only do businesses create jobs but they also encourage economic growth, help build community identity and diversify the local marketplace.

Township officials have embraced a business-friendly philosophy that aims to keep existing businesses and attract new ones.

This approach has helped grow the slate of local options for shopping, eating, socializing and securing services, while also expanding our commercial tax base.

Customers pay sales tax when they visit local businesses, and in turn, businesses pay taxes to the township, the school district and the county. This money ends up funding some of our most important community amenities—parks, roads, police, schools and much more.

We are fortunate to have a wide variety of businesses that have chosen to make South Fayette Township their home. You can find local business listings on our website,, and on our mobile app, South Fayette CitizenLink.

I encourage you to seek out these establishments and consider shopping locally whenever possible. And remember: Small Business Saturday is Nov. 26—just in time for your holiday shopping.

In the end, a strong local business economy is good for everyone in South Fayette.