“Building Bridges” was the theme as Bill Peduto officially announced that he is running for Mayor of Pittsburgh last night to a wildly enthusiastic crowd of 1,300 in the Strip District. People for Peduto Chair, Cecile Springer, started the proceedings; revving up the crowd and introducing County Executive Rich Fitzgerald. Fitzgerald stressed the need for partnerships. He said that he was a city resident who cared deeply about the place where he and his family lives. He noted that “Governance is hard work. It’s not about going to movie premieres; it’s not about going to Steelers games … [it's] not about going golfing.” Fitzgerald officially endorsed Peduto saying he couldn’t “think of anyone better to take the mantle on the fifth floor.” He then introduced Bill Peduto as “the next mayor of the City of Pittsburgh.”
“Operation Red” is a program introduced by Pittsburgh City Councilman Bill Peduto in November and passed by Council on December 11th which will give the City a powerful new tool to fight blight. The legislation works by shaming the worst landlords in the City by erecting large signs in front of up to 10 properties whose owners have received multiple BBI citations and Housing Court convictions but have not yet taken steps to fix the problems. The program eliminates the owner’s anonymity by displaying their name, telephone number, and home address on the signs at the blighted properties. Additionally, the names and contact information of chronic offenders will be broadcast on the City’s cable channel.
UPMC Shadyside Hospital’s 10-year master plan defines what future development will look like and how expansions will be addressed to minimize the impact to adjacent neighborhoods. In getting the required community input, UPMC Shadyside has conducted community meetings with residents and businesses, a formal design review, a traffic study, a Planning Commission hearing and, most recently, a presentation to City Council. You can see their presentation to Pittsburgh City Council here. The latest version of the complete UPMC Shadyside Hospital Project Area Master Plan can be viewed here and an archive of other associated documents is available here.
Our region’s abundance of water has played a vital role in our history. The confluence of rivers made for a natural site for both early trading posts and military forts. Our rivers were critical to early glass manufacturing and iron production. The development of the steel industry was dependent not only on access to coal, iron ore, and limestone via water transportation, but also on the abundance of that water for cooling and metal manufacturing. But, as manufacturing disappeared as a force in this region, the importance of our rivers diminished as an asset for economic development. The same pattern repeated itself throughout the Rust Belt and the Sun Belt emerged as an economic hotbed. Now, the Sun Belt is facing a crisis — a water crisis.
In our cash-strapped cities, it sometimes seems that everything is up for sale, and often, at what turns out to be for rock-bottom prices. With budget shortfalls and pension woes, what could sound better than the promise of a quick influx of big bucks? And what politician wouldn’t want to paint a rosy financial picture to the taxpayers of private firms riding to the rescue? The reality, however, can be quite different. As they say, the devil is in the details. What is emerging is how often public finance schemes are created in order to make large sums of money — money for the private entities — at the cost of the taxpayer. Consider the following cautionary tales — some dysfunctional, some unethical, and some, downright criminal.
The Youth, Parents & Partners for Youth Achievement Dinner is a formal event program open to all youth (grades 8 to 12), their families, faith friends, youth advocates, school teachers, and leaders from the community, corporate, government, non-profit, and faith spheres. It’s the second annual event from “Youth Engaged for Success.” Please join them as they build up our region’s youth and build towards a diverse, peaceful and sustainable region.
Love Bikes is a full-service bicycle shop in Lawrenceville. The shop has been there for a year and a half and has been a welcome addition to the neighborhood. Now, owner Nic Brungo would like to try something a little different: producing hand-built bamboo bicycle frames and complete bikes. Nic learned how to build bamboo bike frames at a small shop in Brooklyn. He wants to bring that skill to our city.
“YERT: Your Environmental Road Trip” is an award-winning film that follows three local, Pittsburgh filmmakers — Mark Dixon, Ben Evans, and Julie Dingman Evans — who upended their lives, pooled their collective life-savings, and set off on a 50-state, year-long journey of discovery to personalize sustainability and to answer a critical question: “ARE WE DOOMED?” The result is thought-provoking, inspiring, and sometimes hilarious (call it an “Environmental Docu-Comedy”) as they explore the good, the bad, and the weird of the Americans who are tackling humanity’s greatest environmental crises.
For more than 40 years, the Design Center has been improving our region by encouraging good design and planning of the built environment. This nonprofit organization provides support, guidance and connections; engages the community; and invests in the early stages of community planning and development through their Design Fund, Design Consults, and Design Allies programs. The Pittsburgh region has benefited greatly from their awards of more than 240 Design Fund grants and the 1,800 plus individual consultations with residential and commercial property owners they have provided.
Election day is almost upon us and no matter which candidate or party you support, I urge you to get out and vote! As we near November 6th, I wanted to let you know about a few opportunities to get involved and support some candidates that I believe are the right choices for America, for Pennsylvania, and for Pittsburgh.