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  #1001  
Old Posted May 5, 2012, 10:31 PM
BrianTH BrianTH is offline
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By the way, the County recently closed its garage east of the Morgue between Fourth and Third:

http://www.post-gazette.com/stories/...closed-214716/

It is this building visible from the Crosstown ramps:

http://g.co/maps/ph3bt

That building or lot, plus the surface parking lot across Third Avenue, could be a nice place to infill the Chinatown subneighborhood.

Last edited by BrianTH; May 5, 2012 at 10:55 PM.
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  #1002  
Old Posted May 6, 2012, 1:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrianTH View Post
By the way, the County recently closed its garage east of the Morgue between Fourth and Third:

http://www.post-gazette.com/stories/...closed-214716/

It is this building visible from the Crosstown ramps:

http://g.co/maps/ph3bt

That building or lot, plus the surface parking lot across Third Avenue, could be a nice place to infill the Chinatown subneighborhood.
That building is sweet.
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  #1003  
Old Posted May 6, 2012, 10:17 PM
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Jonboy1983 Jonboy1983 is offline
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Whatever happens to that building, I'd like for it to have some other use besides a parking garage. I know that sounds crazy considering the lack thereof downtown, but I just think something else can go there. Regarding the architecture, is that art-deco?

I know that I referenced the parking garage underneath 564 Forbes Avenue, but I think it deserves a second referencing. That garage is an eyesore. I thought it was awful when I first saw it as a kid riding on a PCC trolley some 25 years ago, and it's even uglier now...

Speaking of the T, I saw an article in the Post-Gazette about businesses seeing a little boost in business since the North Shore Connector opened. Now, I can't find the article...
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  #1004  
Old Posted May 7, 2012, 12:25 AM
BrianTH BrianTH is offline
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Apparently it dates to the 1930s, so I would say Art Deco is an appropriate label.

Realistically, at least for now, you would have to provide the County with some sort of substitute parking (in fact I suspect their recent use of the lot next to the Grant Building is explained in part by the closure of their garage on Fourth). Also speaking realistically, that area is bordered by highway ramps plus the T, so the lowest floors of any structures in those lots are not going to be prime space.

Accordingly, I'd actually think something like 564 Forbes approach is the right way to go--have structured parking for a few floors, in both lots on either side of Third (in fact Third could end in an entrance), then other stuff on top. I know this would be less than attractive from the T, but tunnels aren't all that attractive either, and the view from the T is less of a priority to me than maximizing the intensity of land use in that area.

Edit: Here you go:

http://www.post-gazette.com/stories/...ne-634571/?p=0

Last edited by BrianTH; May 7, 2012 at 12:50 AM.
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  #1005  
Old Posted May 7, 2012, 12:32 AM
BrianTH BrianTH is offline
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Bing Maps in Bird's Eye is pretty useful for this sort of discussion:

http://binged.it/K4N9qe

Personally, I actually see a lot to commend the 564 Forbes approach--my main complaint is the upper portion could have been bigger, but overall that is a nice utilization of a tight, challenging space.
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  #1006  
Old Posted May 7, 2012, 1:42 AM
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I guess you have a valid point about 564 Forbes Avenue. The thing is, I'm trying to redesign the Crosstown Boulevard and Boulevard of the Allies to have the old Chinatown subneighborhood better connected with Downtown and Downtown connected more with the Lower Hill. I actually finished a rough rendering of how I'd like that to look in SketchUp; I basically removed that whole interchange with Crosstown, the Liberty Bridge and Boulevard.

Ok, so removing the garage isn't exactly a possibility. Suppose it was decked over with a green roof. In my model, I have that whole thing replaced with a park, altho I do have an intention of implying that the garage is underneath that...
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  #1007  
Old Posted May 8, 2012, 3:00 PM
michaelsouellette michaelsouellette is offline
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Article in the Post-Gazette today about the destruction and future of the civic arena site. They have some sketches of the site proposal in there as well.





There seems to be a few more taller buildings in these drawings then the ones we have all seen for the last couple of years.

http://www.post-gazette.com/stories/...t-gone-634897/
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  #1008  
Old Posted May 8, 2012, 6:03 PM
daviderik daviderik is offline
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at the end of the article...


While the panel caused some consternation, it did not delay the overall demolition. Still, Mr. Boehm said, the arena has been a "tough project" because of its uniqueness, the hardness of concrete and the amount of reinforcing steel in the concrete.

"This thing was well built and amazingly designed," one worker at the site said Monday. "It's a unique structure, one of a kind in the world. It posed -- What's the right word? -- a challenge."
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  #1009  
Old Posted May 8, 2012, 7:12 PM
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I do believe I see a FULL deck over Crosstown Boulevard!

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  #1010  
Old Posted May 8, 2012, 7:41 PM
akPITT207 akPITT207 is offline
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It's hard to tell from the tiny rendering but it does look like there might be more of it decked than in the two older renderings but it doesn't look like the buildings are any taller than before; the density of the plan as a whole is still very underwhelming. But there's plenty of time for that to change.
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  #1011  
Old Posted May 8, 2012, 8:49 PM
BrianTH BrianTH is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by michaelsouellette View Post
There seems to be a few more taller buildings in these drawings then the ones we have all seen for the last couple of years.
That's quite a different plan than the one they showed during the Civic Arena hearings. I believe that tall building across from Washington Plaza is new, and the tall buildings across from the courthouse do indeed look taller. Some other buildings toward the front may actually be a bit shorter, but overall it looks like a higher density of use to me.

I think the deck-park is the same size--meaning just between the bridges. I think it looks like it goes further north because of the perspective and the existing green-space east of USX.
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  #1012  
Old Posted May 8, 2012, 8:57 PM
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Originally Posted by akPITT207 View Post
the density of the plan as a whole is still very underwhelming.
It is a jarring transition adjacent to the Grant Street Power Corridor.
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  #1013  
Old Posted May 8, 2012, 9:42 PM
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Probably not the most popular view in a skyscraper forum, but I actually like the low-rise corridor along the Wylie extension into Downtown. What I would like to see is the taller buildings more fully occupy the northwest corner, and also along Centre across from Consol.
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  #1014  
Old Posted May 8, 2012, 9:58 PM
akPITT207 akPITT207 is offline
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Wylie does look pretty good in that rendering. Here's an older plan from the Isle of Capri days that I hadn't seen before, designed by someone named Mike Calvert. I think the density here is appropriate for the site, although a signature tower of some kind on one of the blocks adjacent to downtown would be ideal.



http://mikecalvert.info/projects-worked-on/
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  #1015  
Old Posted May 9, 2012, 12:07 AM
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nice find, ak... never saw that before
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  #1016  
Old Posted May 9, 2012, 2:17 AM
Minivan Werner Minivan Werner is offline
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Wow, that's very reminiscent of Sim City.

The development still needs more height along the western edge of the Civic Arena site. I'd like to see what it'd look like if those two 12-15 story buildings were upped to 22-25.
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  #1017  
Old Posted May 9, 2012, 1:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Evergrey View Post
It is a jarring transition adjacent to the Grant Street Power Corridor.
Yeah, I agree. With the height and bulk of the USS Tower right on the eastern edge of the Triangle, it would be nice to have at least a little bit more height to this development's western edge.

That's why in some ways I'd rather see this parcel developed over time by different actors. You just seem to get more natural results... and ultimately, can achieve better uses of the land. Instead, you just get a singular plan all slapped down at once (in stages, I know, but basically at once) and as a result, you get that "something's not quite right here" feeling when viewing/experiencing it in context with the surroundings. It's that telltale sign of how we now do master-planned developments in urban areas.

Never saw that Isle of Capri rendering before either. Looks kinda cool, but I bet the buildings have that unbelievable trying-too-hard "urbany" look to them -- you know, when the block is actually all one building, but every 40 feet or so they change the design to make it look like different buildings... I fucking hate that. Also, is the taller building with the half-circle thing in front of it the casino and hotel?
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  #1018  
Old Posted May 9, 2012, 2:36 PM
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Here, I attempted to enbiggen those drawings from the Post Gazette and also I have the other drawings all side by side for easy comparisons. Not that any of these are the final plan yet.




This one was intentionally made with a very low resolution probably so people don't try to study it too hard. lol







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  #1019  
Old Posted May 9, 2012, 2:50 PM
themaguffin themaguffin is offline
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I think the newer pictures would be great on the east side of Crawford Square, but they really need to get the arena area right. Nobody expects tall towers, but there needs to be some scale especially since it's not like there are many areas to grow.
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  #1020  
Old Posted May 9, 2012, 4:03 PM
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It occurs to me that Chatham Center is sitting right there and available for use as a model. Something along those lines in terms of height and density (but not including the anti-urban plaza), and allowing for the low-rise corridor right along Wylie, would be a reasonable target for the blocks nearest Downtown, and create a pretty coherent step-down from Grant:

http://binged.it/ICRa1e

Incidentally, I agree that a more organic approach might be a good idea. I certainly wouldn't mind if the Penguins wanted to start on the upper/eastern end, because I think the case for higher-density use in the lower/western end is only going to improve with time. However, if a major tenant wanted to step up and fund something cool in the nearer future, that would be OK with me too.
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