Appeal from the Order of the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission in cases of Application of the City of Pittsburgh for approval of the construction of the crossings where (1) the Liberty-Crosstown Thoroughfare and ramps thereof will cross below the grade of the tracks of Pittsburgh Railways Company located in the bed of Wylie Avenue as relocated, (2) the same Thoroughfare will cross above grade of Fifth Avenue and (3) the same Thoroughfare and ramps thereof will cross above the grade of the tracks of said company located in the beds of Forbes Street and Sixth Avenue, respectively, all in the City of Pittsburgh, Allegheny County, and the allocation of the costs and expenses incident thereto, Application Docket No. 83297; Application of Pittsburgh Railways Company for approval of the amendment of the charter and acceptance of franchises from the City of Pittsburgh authorizing the construction of street railway track and related facilities in the Lower Hill District of the City of Pittsburgh, Allegheny County, Application Docket No. 85375; Application of Pittsburgh Railways Company for approval of the abandonment or discontinuance of service, rights, powers, franchises or privileges in the Lower Hill District of the City of Pittsburgh, Allegheny County, Application Docket No. 85376; and City of Pittsburgh v. Pittsburgh Railways Company, Complaint Docket No. 16928.
Marvin A. Fein and John O. Wicks, with them, Mead J. Mulvihill, Jr., City Solicitor; and John E. Fullerton, for petitioners.
Edward J. Morris, Harry H. Frank and Louis G. Cocheres, Assistant Attorney General, with them, Herbert G. Zahn, Assistant Attorney General; Robert W. Cunliffe, Deputy Attorney General; Gerald Gornish, Acting Attorney General; Candace N. Kreiger, Assistant Counsel; John B. Wilson, Assistant Counsel; Kathleen Herzog Larkin, Chief Counsel; Gerard F. Hickel ; and Walter T. Wardzinski, for respondents.
President Judge Bowman and Judges Crumlish, Jr., Wilkinson, Jr., Mencer, Rogers and MacPhail. Judges Blatt, DiSalle and Craig did not participate. Opinion by Judge Crumlish, Jr.
The City of Pittsburgh and Urban Redevelopment Authority of Pittsburgh appeal from an order of the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission which required the City to reimburse Duquesne Light Company and Pittsburgh Railways Company (PRC) for expenses incurred in relocation resulting from the construction of the Liberty-Crosstown Thoroughfare.
In 1956 the City requested Commission approval to construct crossings where the proposed thoroughfare would cross street railway tracks of the PRC. Commission approval was granted on May 12, 1958, and PRC was ordered to relocate, as were all public utilities which would interfere with construction. Hearings on the allocation of costs surrounding this redevelopment project were not completed until September 23, 1975. The Commission entered its final order on December 12, 1977, resulting in this appeal.
City of Pittsburgh -- Duquesne Light Company
Pursuant to the Commission order of May 12, 1958*fn1 and amendments thereto, Duquesne Light Company (Duquesne) was compelled to relocate its facilities in the construction area. Hearings on the allocation of
costs for the relocation were completed September 23, 1975, and by final order the City was compelled to pay Duquesne 50% of the relocation costs. The City requests reversal of this allocation and we reverse.
The City correctly argues that, prior to 1963, it was a well-settled policy of the law that non-transportation public utilities bear the expenses of relocating their facilities when the relocation is brought about by governmental exercise of the police power such as in construction, relocation, alteration, protection or abolition of a highway-rail crossing. Delaware River Port Authority v. Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission, 393 Pa. 639, 145 A.2d 172 (1958).
It is equally clear that on July 3, 1963, the legislature amended Section 411(a) of the Public Utility Law,*fn2 thereby conferring specific ...