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  #81  
Old Posted Dec 24, 2011, 1:21 AM
BrianTH BrianTH is offline
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The Catalyst Building is pretty cool, and should make for nice apartments:

http://www.aiellodevelopment.com/lease1.html



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  #82  
Old Posted Dec 25, 2011, 4:42 AM
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While at the game today I took some pictures of the new Allegheny Station behind Heinz Field.







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  #83  
Old Posted Dec 25, 2011, 6:32 AM
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http://post-gazette.com/pg/11359/1199284-53.stm
Quote:

Hazelwood LTV site's time has come

Fundraising has started to redevelop city's last brownfield for housing, business and retail

Sunday, December 25, 2011
By Diana Nelson Jones, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette


Michael Henninger/Post-Gazette
The old LTV coke works site in Hazelwood will be redeveloped.



Michael Henninger/Post-Gazette photos


The old LTV coke works site in Hazelwood.


Almono LLC, the consortium of foundations that owns the former LTV coke works in Hazelwood, has begun fundraising to build new infrastructure on the 178-acre site for housing, retail, offices and clean manufacturing.

"It is going to move forward, finally," said Don Smith, president of the Regional Industrial Development Corp., which manages the site for Almono. "We are very confident we are going to be able to facilitate development."

The first phase of the campaign needs $25 million, which would come from a variety of sources including federal and state governments, he said.

The site stretches between the Monongahela River and Second Avenue from near the Hot Metal Bridge into the heart of Hazelwood. It is the city's last brownfield.

The vast area has been as obvious a location for development as its former brownfield kin across the river -- Southside Works and the Waterfront in Homestead -- but the possibility that the Mon-Fayette Expressway would pass through has been cited as the inhibitor of investment. The site also was contaminated.

The land has cleared Pennsylvania's Land Recycling environmental standards, and the owner group has hired an engineering firm to do a traffic study, said Tim White, RIDC's assistant vice president for development.

Completing the Pittsburgh link of the Mon-Fayette is on hold for now because there is no funding. Even with funding, an existing environmental impact statement would have to be updated for the road to proceed.

"Our activity is dormant," said Tom Fox, a spokesman for the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission. "If we ever got the funding to reopen our activity on this project, we would try to design a road to bring maximum advantages" to the places along its route.

Mr. Smith said the waiting is over: "We are moving forward as if [the expressway extension] is not going to happen."

The development plan defines the land in four zones -- residential, with a street grid that would connect with the rest of the neighborhood; industrial; office and commercial, and a green zone in the middle "because of topography challenges," said Mr. Smith. "It may look flat from the road, but it isn't."

The most recent hope for 30 acres of the site was dashed last summer when UPMC ended its bid to invest upward of $800 million for a vaccine development center that would have employed 1,000 people.

"We just move on," said Jim Richter, executive director of the Hazelwood Initiative, a nonprofit community development organization. "I am cautiously optimistic that the spring and summer will show results we haven't seen in the past by virtue of the new master plan [by Rothschild Doyno Collaborative] being completed."

Architect Ken Doyno led the effort. "Our charge was to develop a vision that connected the community, welcomed investment to the site and made sense of all the physical realities, which are many -- railroads, infrastructure, old buildings," he said. "We wanted to interweave and connect every possible place with the community that surrounds it."

This development will bring housing up to Tecumseh Street and extend Hazelwood Avenue down into it. It also will connect to the trail system, Mr. White said.

"We have put a big focus on learning from other developments so that this site is not" isolated, he said.

J&L Steel built and operated on the site from 1884 until 1974, when LTV bought the plant. It closed in 1997.

The Benedum Foundation, Heinz Endowments, Richard King Mellon Foundation and McCune Foundation created Almono LLC and bought the site for $10 million in 2002.

In those nine years, a lot has changed, Mr. Smith said.

The expressway was anticipated at that time. "We thought the railroad might abandon some of the lines on the site," he said. "Now that doesn't seem like it will happen, so we're proceeding with the one [railroads] and not the other [the expressway].

"We are contemplating some industrial uses so the rail could be useful, and if there were an opportunity for dual use to include passengers from Hazelwood through Oakland to Lawrenceville, that would be tremendous improvement for Hazelwood."

Carnegie Mellon University's Field Robotics Center occupies the old J&L round house, where rail cars were repaired when J&L operated its own railroad between its mills on the South Side and in Hazelwood. The robotics center uses roads on the site to test automated vehicles. Sculptor Tim Kaulen is working in the bar mill using reclaimed steel. Construction companies have used the site to store equipment and as staging areas, including Trumbull Industries in its work on the subway tunnel under the Allegheny River. Fill from that and other projects has been trucked to the site to raise the land above the 100-year flood plain.

"There are no more brownfields available," said Mr. Doyno, "so it's just a matter of time for this site. I think we are on cusp of growing again. We have the capacity to make that come true, and it is starting to get exciting."


Diana Nelson Jones: djones@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1626
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  #84  
Old Posted Dec 25, 2011, 12:52 PM
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Chris125, thanks for the great pics of that new station! I haven't seen them yet and you got a great perspective from above. I will add them to the 1st page of new developments when I get a chance.
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  #85  
Old Posted Dec 25, 2011, 9:45 PM
themaguffin themaguffin is online now
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Jesus, that casino is UGLY.
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  #86  
Old Posted Dec 26, 2011, 1:55 AM
MMorales2 MMorales2 is offline
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Hey PA Pride. I think you should also post all of the great progress and future projects that Riverlife is doing for the City of Pittsburgh. Just a thought.
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  #87  
Old Posted Dec 26, 2011, 2:30 AM
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Originally Posted by MMorales2 View Post
Hey PA Pride. I think you should also post all of the great progress and future projects that Riverlife is doing for the City of Pittsburgh. Just a thought.
Chucka could probably provide some insight.
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  #88  
Old Posted Dec 26, 2011, 3:09 AM
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http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pitt.../s_773518.html

Quote:
Pittsburgh's profile holds gifts large and small

By John Conti, FOR THE PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE-REVIEW
Sunday, December 25, 2011

Downtown Pittsburgh has changed dramatically for the better over the past 20 years or so.

There are still a few too many empty or underused storefronts and a few too many jagged empty spaces filled with cars. But on the whole, our Downtown has become distinguished for good looking new buildings, revitalized old ones and superb new civic spaces -- things that make it stand out among cities of our size.

These changes have all been grounded in good planning, and they represent, in most cases, a generosity of intentions, both public and private. So, because today is Christmas Day let's pick out a half dozen of those changes -- think of them, perhaps, as gifts we've given ourselves!

PPG Place: There was tremendous excitement in the late 1970s when the designs for PPG Place were revealed by the celebrated architect Philip Johnson. His plans showcased a new, dramatically central public square set just a block away from Market Square and connected to it by a small pedestrian mall. But the new square turned out to be a huge disappointment. Barren and severe, its focal point was a stone obelisk improbably mounted on four round black balls. Pittsburghers quickly dubbed it "The Tomb of the Unknown Bowler." Then, in 1999, the Hillman interests acquired PPG Place, and following the wishes of civic leaders Henry and Elsie Hillman, soon transformed the square with a gorgeous plaza-level fountain with dancing waters in the summer and a Rockefeller Center-style skating rink in the winter. This has made PPG Place a destination year-round and, most importantly, a wonderful place in the midst of all the city's towers to take children.

The Grant Street Revitalization: The term "Grant Street Revitalization" may seem oxymoronic to all who wish that our city and county governments could, in fact, revitalize themselves. But, for our purposes, we'll use it to describe the physical transformation of that street by the city over the years. A long line of now-maturing trees -- extending down the center of the street for six blocks -- has proven to be spectacular. And the attention paid to brick paving, curbs and sidewalks give it an almost European feel for public amenities.

PNC everywhere: Some like to joke that PNC, the big bank and financial services company, is gradually taking over the whole Golden Triangle. It only seems that way. PNC actually has a distinguished architectural history downtown. Two buildings from the 1970s -- One PNC Plaza on Fifth Avenue and Two PNC Plaza on Liberty (this is two glass octagons joined together, originally built for another bank) are among the most elegant tall buildings Downtown. But PNC has lately been on a building binge, starting in 2001 with a handsome low-rise operations center on First Avenue at Grant Street with its own park in front. (It's the building with a curved facade that overlooks the Parkway East). Most recently, it opened the sleekly modern 3 PNC Plaza at Fifth and Liberty designed by Gensler, a major international firm headquartered in San Francisco. And it's now hired Gensler to plan a new 33-story PNC headquarters on Wood Street between Fifth and Forbes that promises to be one of the most interesting buildings of any era Downtown. PNC seems to reliably keep in mind the public's interest in having an attractive and stylish city.

Pocket Parks and Plazas: PNC also had a hand in creating Triangle Park, at Fifth and Liberty Avenues, one of several "pocket parks" that have proliferated in Downtown in recent years and that continually surprise and delight pedestrians. The grandparents of these pocket parks are the plazas in the Cultural District adjacent to Heinz Hall on Sixth Street and EQT Tower on Liberty. Both are urbane and pleasant spaces. More recently, on Penn Avenue, there's the Agnes R. Katz Plaza next to the O'Reilly Theater, with lively sculptures by Louise Bourgeois. And across Seventh Street from that is a small corner park notable for sculptures that look exactly like magnolia trees in bloom. Also, Point Park University, as part of its "Academic Village" approach to revitalizing its part of Downtown, recently created a small plaza on the other side of the Golden Triangle at Boulevard of the Allies and Wood Street.

The Riverfronts
: Take a walk along the rivers. It's far more enjoyable these days than ever. There are new park-like walkways along the Monongahela Wharf and along the Allegheny, where you can now walk all the way to the David L. Lawrence Convention Center. You can get comfortably close to the water and the broad views afforded there. Coming soon are trail connections that will enable you to walk or bike all the way from the Point to Washington, D.C. And maybe someday: trails leading up the Allegheny Valley.

The View From a Bridge: Next time you're on the Fort Pitt Bridge, be reminded that a dozen years ago, under a new federal safety mandate for Interstate highways, PennDot planned to erect 42-inch-high solid concrete barriers on each side of the bridge. That would have made it impossible for anyone not in a truck to see views of the Point and rivers while crossing the bridge. A determined coalition of civic groups got PennDot to reconsider and partnered with the agency to develop what are now known as "Pennsylvania Barriers," with stout metal rails atop a low concrete base that still allow you to see some of our scenic city's most stunning views.

It's a good reminder of how seemingly little things can make a big difference. And how the best gifts usually require thought and effort.





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  #89  
Old Posted Dec 26, 2011, 3:12 AM
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http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pitt...tworkHeadlines

Quote:
Allegheny Valley commuter train plan still idles along the tracks

By Michael Aubele, VALLEY NEWS DISPATCH
Sunday, December 25, 2011
Last updated: 10:39 am

While plans to start an Allegheny Valley commuter train move forward, financing obstacles exist. And the developers don't have any assurances they can overcome them.

The rail line from Lower Burrell to Pittsburgh's Strip District will need major government subsidies before it's built and after it's running:

• The private investor planning to finance the commuter rail line will have to provide funds until the federal government dedicates millions in grants to the project.

• Many projects throughout the United States are seeking to tap into the federal program that the developers want to use and there isn't as much money as there are requests.

• Once built, the rail line likely will need millions of dollars in subsidies from the state. There currently is no funding stream for it.

"There are legitimate questions you can't overlook," said Robert Ardolino, the developer pushing to build the line. "But I'm willing to face those questions head-on."

Despite these challenges, Ardolino said he's convinced everything will fall into place so that commuters between Lower Burrell and Pittsburgh will have another travel option within a few years. He has suggested the train line could enter the construction phase in 2013.

Construction funds

Ardolino expects a majority of the government assistance to come via $180 million from the Federal Transit Administration's New Starts program. He said he also expects to garner millions in grants from other federal agencies, such as the Federal Railroad Administration.

While FTA officials are aware of Ardolino's plans, they still haven't received a formal application for a grant. They cautioned that the money available through New Starts is highly sought after and the pot has dwindled.

An official with a Cleveland-based lender, First Service Commercial Loans, said as much as $350 million in private money is available for the project. But, said Russell Oates, a principal with First Service, his firm can't commit any money until the federal funds are in place.

He's hopeful that funding does come through because he believes the rail project is a viable investment.

Operational subsidies

To cover long-term operating costs, the train likely will need to be subsidized -- common for public transportation systems. Ardolino suggested the train would need only a nominal subsidy -- 88 cents per passenger mile, which is less than the national average of $1.42 -- from the state, which already is struggling to pay for existing services and programs.

At the rate Ardolino suggested, the state's subsidy could range from $20 to $23 for a trip from Lower Burrell to Pittsburgh.

The state subsidizes Port Authority of Allegheny County operations, including its light rail -- the T -- in Pittsburgh. An authority spokesman said he couldn't offer a subsidy rate per passenger mile for the T because the state's subsidy for PAT is given in a lump sum. He also suggested the comparison wouldn't be "apples to apples" because the proposed commuter train and light rail, electric cars are two different types of mass transit.

Much of the line for the commuter rail already exists and is used as a freight corridor by Allegheny Valley Railroad.

But running commuter service from Lower Burrell to Pittsburgh would require construction at both ends. It will be challenging to extend the tracks from their current endpoint in the Strip District because the proposal will have to clear environmental, financial and political hurdles.

State Rep. Frank Dermody, D-Oakmont, argued the state could be in a position to subsidize the project, saying, "It would be part of an overhaul of the transportation funding system in the commonwealth.

"I do believe, absolutely, that the commuter rail could be part of that. It would be part of the overall funding."

Dermody attacked Gov. Tom Corbett's administration for failing to immediately address the state's transportation needs, which Dermody described as "a $3 billion problem" of failing infrastructure and mass transit systems.

Corbett has said he won't rush to offer a long-term plan to increase transportation funding. An advisory commission he appointed presented him with a plan in August that it said would increase transportation funding up to $2.7 billion annually within five years. The governor hasn't implemented the recommendations or alternatives.

A spokesman in Corbett's office deferred comment about funding the proposed commuter train to PennDOT.

"Once we had an application or proposal, we would have to weigh that against other requests," PennDOT spokeswoman Erin Waters said. "Without increased revenue for transportation, it would be difficult to envision being able to give capital to a new project."

Wishful thinking?

For more than 20 years, it has been suggested that a commuter train should run between Pittsburgh and the Alle-Kiski Valley. Proponents have said a passenger train would offer benefits that include reducing traffic along Route 28, alleviating parking congestion in Pittsburgh and giving commuters a chance to relax during their trip.

There hasn't been much, if any, vocal opposition to the proposal. But with each passing year of little to no substantive progress, there are those who wonder if the train is nothing more than a pipe dream.

Frank Gamrat, senior research associate with the Allegheny Institute for Public Policy, noted public discussion about the proposed rail appears sporadically but has failed to produce anything beyond a feasibility study.

"It just sort of comes and goes," he said.

Gamrat said a major problem facing the project is a lack of available public money, pointing out that Port Authority of Allegheny County and Westmoreland County Transit don't have money to lend to it, and the same holds true for the state.

He suggested, however, that things could change if the economy rebounds.

"If the economy improves and picks up, this may gain some more traction," he said.

Ardolino and Oates said what makes the project a worthwhile investment is the potential profit from things such as development and advertising rights along the corridor.

"That's where you're going to make your money -- by generating a lot of business," Oates said.

He said his investors like the project because of its public-private nature, which would provide opportunities through tax incentives for development.

Ardolino said the project will create Transit Revitalization Investment Districts -- state-designated areas targeted for development -- along the corridor to provide for a range of development from housing to commercial near train stations through tax incentives.

He said that development and 13 other funding streams, ranging from utility easements and impact fees on development to advertising rights and fares, would support the train, which would be run by a licensed operator such as RailAmerica.

Wendell Cox, a transportation, demographics and urban policy consultant based near St. Louis, said he doesn't expect significant development to follow, simply because it hasn't happened along existing commuter rail corridors.

"There will be advocates who point out this little development or that one," he said. "But you're not going to find anything where a corridor has been transformed. Objectively speaking, there are no models to look at."

Ardolino, meantime, said he feeds off the skepticism.

"This is going to change the way the whole corridor looks," he said. "Your doubt is my motivation."
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  #90  
Old Posted Dec 26, 2011, 1:23 PM
themaguffin themaguffin is online now
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I'm all for the rail line, but are there enough people to support one along that corridor?
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  #91  
Old Posted Dec 27, 2011, 12:15 AM
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I'm all for the rail line, but are there enough people to support one along that corridor?
I'd say look no further than Rt 28 for the answer to your question. If I had to make a rough estimate of how many people resided within a mile of that corridor, I'd say you'd have a good 60,000 at least.

I, too, am all for this. If the region's comprehensive plan calls for more of a focus on transit and any development associated with transit (transit oriented development, mixed-use development, higher density development, more investment in central locations of older municipalities, etc), then this should be a top priority.
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  #92  
Old Posted Dec 27, 2011, 3:13 PM
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From today's Pittsburgh Tribune Review:

6 county projects to share $3.7 million in casino taxes

http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pitt.../s_773789.html

Quote:
Allegheny County officials chose six projects to receive money from a state fund that uses casino taxes for development.

If the state approves, the projects will receive about $500,000 each from $3.7 million available this year from the Gaming Economic Development and Tourism Fund.

The Redevelopment Authority of Allegheny County identified the Civic Arena site in the Hill District, the $70 million Newbury development in South Fayette and four other projects to receive money. All requests must be approved by the state's Commonwealth Financing Authority.

The Redevelopment Authority received 51 applications seeking a total of more than $25 million. The six selected projects were:

-- The Lower Hill Infrastructure, designing a four-street area to reconnect the Hill District to Downtown after demolition of the Civic Arena. It is part of a $446 million, 28-acre mixed-use development project.

-- Newbury, being developed by Brett Malky of EQA Landmark on 301 acres that was a former Koppers Chemicals plant site. It will contain more than 950,000 square feet of office space, restaurants, banks, a hotel and retailers. The project will include 200 for-sale homes and about 250 rental apartments. Money will be used for offsite traffic improvements related to the development.

-- LTV Hazelwood, preparing a brownfield site for engineering and construction work. Planning includes building 2 million square feet of office, research and development space.

-- Bakery Square phase two, building a 12-acre mixed-use development that will include 400,000 square feet of new office space, 81 rental townhouses and 27 single-family houses in the East End. It will build on the success of the Bakery Square development across Penn Avenue. Money would be used for utilities, sidewalks, curbs, street lighting and other fixtures.

-- Eden Hall Campus of Chatham University in Richland, developing the initial phase of a $22 million campus. Money would be used for infrastructure and landscape restoration.

-- Harmar's plan to realign Rich Hill Road at state Route 910, creating a safer intersection with installation of a traffic signal, storm sewers, street lighting, landscape and signage.

The Gaming Economic Development Fund was created this year from $34 million originally authorized for development of a hotel at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center, Downtown. The Legislature on July 1 allotted the money instead to the Commonwealth Financing Authority because it had not been used for the hotel.
It's a bit of a bummer that part of this money was actually part of $34 million authorized for the development of the David Lawrence Convention Center hotel. The political circus continues regarding this necessary development for the convention center. At least some of it is going toward the redevelopment of the Civic Arena site, at least as far as building the necessary infrastructure to spur development there.
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  #93  
Old Posted Dec 28, 2011, 9:26 PM
PITairport PITairport is offline
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Originally Posted by themaguffin View Post
Jesus, that casino is UGLY.
It sure is.

Pittsburgh has reclaimed its river fronts, which is great. Part of that process involved designing these new structures to compliment the river. The river side of the Casino looks a lot better than this view, but the overall result is one sided, as it seems the architects forgot the building has 3 other sides. The result is a hideous building from most angles, which now blocks views of the beautiful West End bridge and a good chunk of Mt. Washington from the north side. They should have put at least part of the parking underground, and included a hotel tower.

The same thing with the convention center. Looks great from the river, but on the city side, its nothing but a huge white wall.

But the result is particularly bad from the western end of the north side because of the above view of the casino garage, that ugly garage they put at the northern Ft. Duquesne Bridge split, and the northern facade of Heinz Field, which looks like the back of a Walmart.

Approving low architectural standards for these brand new buildings on the north side is the worst thing since they decided to put the Allegheny Co prison at its current location.
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  #94  
Old Posted Dec 28, 2011, 10:22 PM
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The casino parking garage is like the Taj Majal compared to the county jail. I can't really fault the jail for how it looks. A jail should look imposing, massive, and devoid of any architectural considerations. However, I find extreme fault for it being placed where it is. What an abominable use of that piece of property.
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  #95  
Old Posted Dec 28, 2011, 10:35 PM
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It sure is.

Pittsburgh has reclaimed its river fronts, which is great. Part of that process involved designing these new structures to compliment the river. The river side of the Casino looks a lot better than this view, but the overall result is one sided, as it seems the architects forgot the building has 3 other sides. The result is a hideous building from most angles, which now blocks views of the beautiful West End bridge and a good chunk of Mt. Washington from the north side. They should have put at least part of the parking underground, and included a hotel tower.

The same thing with the convention center. Looks great from the river, but on the city side, its nothing but a huge white wall.

But the result is particularly bad from the western end of the north side because of the above view of the casino garage, that ugly garage they put at the northern Ft. Duquesne Bridge split, and the northern facade of Heinz Field, which looks like the back of a Walmart.

Approving low architectural standards for these brand new buildings on the north side is the worst thing since they decided to put the Allegheny Co prison at its current location.
Ugh, I could not agree more with that sentiment. I have heard that some kind of hotel is/was planned to complement the casino, but I thought that license is for a casino only; not a casino/hotel. I also don't understand why they couldn't have put the parking underground. It's not like there was anything else blocking it -- the extension of the T will be elevated, if it's ever extended beyond Allegheny Station. If this is due to some rediculous zoning law, then zoning should be re-worked so that future development can actually make sense and actually contribute to the "future" of the Golden Triangle. The way such regulations are, the future for some parts is not exactly what I'd call "golden..."

Regarding the back end of the Lawrence Convention Center, I guess they could have put a glass-enclosed atrium there. However, the street there (French Street) is pretty much an alley-way.

I agree wholeheartedly about the jail. Heck, I would have put the county jail on Brunots Island or even somewhere on Neville Island. The prison took up prime real estate for either a good office or residential building. Who ever heard of a high-rise prison, not to mention, one that did NOT look like a dungeon like the old county jail did...?

Last edited by Jonboy1983; Dec 28, 2011 at 10:37 PM. Reason: added commentary
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  #96  
Old Posted Dec 28, 2011, 10:42 PM
PITairport PITairport is offline
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. However, I find extreme fault for it being placed where it is. What an abominable use of that piece of property.
Yes, the location of it was really what I was getting at. What a waste of prime land between the river and downtown. Being an old rail terminal, it would have been great for a Station Square type of redevelopment.
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  #97  
Old Posted Dec 29, 2011, 12:32 AM
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Originally Posted by PITairport View Post
It sure is.

Pittsburgh has reclaimed its river fronts, which is great. Part of that process involved designing these new structures to compliment the river. The river side of the Casino looks a lot better than this view, but the overall result is one sided, as it seems the architects forgot the building has 3 other sides. The result is a hideous building from most angles, which now blocks views of the beautiful West End bridge and a good chunk of Mt. Washington from the north side. They should have put at least part of the parking underground, and included a hotel tower.

The same thing with the convention center. Looks great from the river, but on the city side, its nothing but a huge white wall.

But the result is particularly bad from the western end of the north side because of the above view of the casino garage, that ugly garage they put at the northern Ft. Duquesne Bridge split, and the northern facade of Heinz Field, which looks like the back of a Walmart.

Approving low architectural standards for these brand new buildings on the north side is the worst thing since they decided to put the Allegheny Co prison at its current location.
Yes..my sentiments exactly. "Reclaim" the riverfronts, but then throw them away again with God awful construction (casino garage). It's the total dumbing down of an urban scape. What kind of designer or architect in his right mind could look at that thing and think that's respectable. But then, the whole deal was bad economics, so why should one expect quality. Wasn't the State just looking for an easy way to fill a budget gap - by generating gambling 'revenue'.
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  #98  
Old Posted Dec 29, 2011, 2:16 AM
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While I'm not exactly a huge fan of the casino garage, do you REALLY think you could build that amount of parking underground without it costing a minimum of $100 million JUST for the parking facility? That garage is enormous, and justifiably so, for it's full or nearly full all weekend, along with a number of weeknight evenings. The place makes an absolute fortune for the State, and I thus have no real issues with it.

At the same time, I really wish those other lots owned by the Steelers would get built on already, and I don't mean with some bullsh*t 2 story retail...

As for Station Square, I certainly hope some residential is built on some of those surface lots. While I agree it's fantastic that Pittsburgh has reclaimed so much land along the riverbanks, it's kind of sad that so much of it is currently wasted on surface parking... I'd rather have the casino/garage than huge surface lots. And yes, I believe the license for Rivers was only for a casino, not a hotel. At the same time, I really wish a private company would use an adjoining piece of property to put up a 15-20 story hotel tower, it is sorely needed over there!

Aaron (Glowrock)
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  #99  
Old Posted Dec 29, 2011, 2:48 AM
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Jonboy1983 Jonboy1983 is offline
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Originally Posted by Johnland View Post
Yes..my sentiments exactly. "Reclaim" the riverfronts, but then throw them away again with God awful construction (casino garage). It's the total dumbing down of an urban scape. What kind of designer or architect in his right mind could look at that thing and think that's respectable. But then, the whole deal was bad economics, so why should one expect quality. Wasn't the State just looking for an easy way to fill a budget gap - by generating gambling 'revenue'.
Yep... Nobody cared if the project stuck out like a sore thumb or not. The casino itself isn't terrible, but that imposing garage rising behind it just looks really bad. As others as well as myself have said, it should have been built underground.

There's another parking garage just down the street from that, right in between the ramps for the Ft. Duquesne Bridge. At least that one has street-level retail and T access built into it.
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  #100  
Old Posted Dec 29, 2011, 3:20 AM
PITairport PITairport is offline
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Originally Posted by glowrock View Post
While I'm not exactly a huge fan of the casino garage, do you REALLY think you could build that amount of parking underground without it costing a minimum of $100 million JUST for the parking facility?
Aaron (Glowrock)

Yes, because this project was one of the few which had a handful of outside developers competing vigorously for the right to build this thing. If it was required for the winning bidder to sink at least half the garage, I believe there still would have been bidders. Just MHO. Same if there was a requirement for an attached hotel - this is a no brainer for a casino.

At any rate, the architectural standards for the garage should have been much more defined. I've seen large garages in cities which are much more easy on the eye. This thing is literally a concrete cube.

Also, have a look at the first page of part one of this thread series. Scroll about half way down and you will find an artists rendering of the winning design. Directly below is a photo during construction. Note the height difference with the garage! Someone was mislead.

http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/showthread.php?t=100544

I 100% agree on the stadium parking lots. Two level development is nonsense. A developer offered $10 million for a parcel just last month to build a 10 story office building with street level shops, but the Steelers/Pirates apparently have first dibs. Its nonsense.
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