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Old 04-27-2012, 08:23 PM   #1
found5dollar
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Moving to Pittsburgh, PA

I'm moving to Pittsburgh for grad school in the fall and i was just wondering of anyone here knows of a similiar site to ArchBoston, but for the Pittsburgh Area.

Just so this isn't a one note thread, here are a few projects i have discovered have recently been completed, are under construction, or are about to break ground in Pittsburgh i found interesting.

3 new light rail stations just opened including a bore tunnel under the Allegheny river




new 600 foot skyscraper called "Tower at PNC Plaza." Opening in 2015. Alot of green technology built in.





new 100,000 sq. foot "Bio, Energy, Nano" research building at Carnegie Mellon supposed to open in 2013 or 14:


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Old 04-27-2012, 10:51 PM   #2
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Re: Moving to Pittsburgh, PA

The sun sets to the North in Pittsburgh?
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Old 04-28-2012, 01:03 PM   #3
Ron Newman
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Re: Moving to Pittsburgh, PA

Pittsburgh seems to have escaped the decline that has marred the other Rust Belt cities (Buffalo, Cleveland, Detroit). What's their secret?
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Old 04-28-2012, 03:54 PM   #4
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Re: Moving to Pittsburgh, PA

I literally just got back from there a few days ago. The North Shore connector is alright, but it goes nowhere currently, just to some parking lots next to the stadiums. I hope they are planning to extend it to Manchester. (I wrote a little article about it).

I don't know of any archboston like sites, I haven't lived there in many years, but the Port Authority seems to run some blog transitpgh.blogspot.com, you might check that out.

I saw the site where the new PNC building is going in, they're still knocking down some stuff. There seems to be a historic theater abutting it, I hope they don't knock that down, it has some nice architecture. I didn't know about the new CMU plans, just toured the Gates building for the first time. This one looks like they're trying to hide the Brutalist abomination known as Wean Hall from sight.

I take it you're going to grad school at CMU. Do you know where you're going to live?

Ron, Pittsburgh was one of the first to suffer, and they've had several decades to turn things around. It's still very much a work in progress. They have a lot of financial industry, and it's almost as much a university town as Boston, so tons of research money. UPMC is a really big player. Despite this, there's lots of places which are just falling apart, with holes in the ground, or worse. The elevated highways criss-cross the center of the city and there's humongous parking lots and garages forming barriers. Take a look at The Hill in a satellite view sometime. That area has been really badly hurt ever since they built Civic/Mellon Arena as "urban renewal" 50 years ago.
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Old 04-29-2012, 09:09 AM   #5
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Re: Moving to Pittsburgh, PA

^Yup. you guessed right. Going for my masters in scenic design. I'm looking at apartments in Squirrel Hill and Shadyside, and I'm thinking somewhere near Murray Ave would be best. I have yet to explore that area though so i could be dead wrong. Going to head down in July again to go apartment hunting over a weekend.

I'm normally really good with transit systems, but for some reason Pittsburgh's really confuses me. It might be that lack of a unified map or that their amtrack terminal, major light rail station, and major bus terminal are not closely connected. Plus some times you pay when you get on a bus and sometimes you pay when you are getting off.... that is plain old confusing.
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Old 04-29-2012, 11:55 AM   #6
Matthew
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Re: Moving to Pittsburgh, PA

Depends what you're looking for. Squirrel Hill reminds me a lot of Brookline and Murray/Forbes is Coolidge Corner, essentially. It's a pretty nice area and it enjoys a very direct connection via the 61-series of buses. The supermarket is right on Murray. Shadyside is closer to campus and walkable but the 71 and 75 buses only skirt the Craig St area. On the other hand, CMU runs free shuttles that pass through that area too. You'd probably want to focus on places between Walnut and Ellsworth, or thereabouts. There are two supermarkets, one on Center and Negley, and one on Center and Highland.

You won't have any reason to use the light rail unless you are trying to, in all likelihood. The fare system is based on downtown commutes, and it kind of makes sense in that perspective. It avoids collecting fares when the bus is at the most congested point -- namely, downtown. It is terribly confusing for someone who isn't going to be doing downtown commutes, but you'll have an unlimited bus pass courtesy of CMU (and it's a great deal).
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Old 04-29-2012, 09:09 PM   #7
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Re: Moving to Pittsburgh, PA

Like Brookline, Squirrel Hill has a large Jewish community.
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Old 04-30-2012, 08:23 AM   #8
found5dollar
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Re: Moving to Pittsburgh, PA

Quote:
Originally Posted by Matthew View Post
Depends what you're looking for. Squirrel Hill reminds me a lot of Brookline and Murray/Forbes is Coolidge Corner, essentially. It's a pretty nice area and it enjoys a very direct connection via the 61-series of buses. The supermarket is right on Murray. Shadyside is closer to campus and walkable but the 71 and 75 buses only skirt the Craig St area. On the other hand, CMU runs free shuttles that pass through that area too. You'd probably want to focus on places between Walnut and Ellsworth, or thereabouts. There are two supermarkets, one on Center and Negley, and one on Center and Highland.

You won't have any reason to use the light rail unless you are trying to, in all likelihood. The fare system is based on downtown commutes, and it kind of makes sense in that perspective. It avoids collecting fares when the bus is at the most congested point -- namely, downtown. It is terribly confusing for someone who isn't going to be doing downtown commutes, but you'll have an unlimited bus pass courtesy of CMU (and it's a great deal).
wow! Thanks for this information. It is great to have input from someone who knows the city and can tell me about the areas... especially where you can compare neighborhoods to ones in boston. Thanks for your help!
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Old 04-30-2012, 10:10 AM   #9
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Re: Moving to Pittsburgh, PA

Oakland can be a fun little area with a more urban feel. I'm pretty sure the 61 bus runs up Forbes ave through Pitt to CMU, but I have no idea about its frequency or how long it would take. Oakland is definitely a college area though with all that entails, so in that sense shadyside may be nicer/quieter.

As for Pittsburgh in, I've only been there a few times (visiting friends while I lived in Cleveland), but it has definitely retained its downtown better than the rest of the rust belt cities I've been to. Aside from the economic factors that have helped maintain the downtown, one other factor to mention is that one of the saving graces for the city itself is that the steel mills were largely outside the city in smaller towns along the rivers. As such, unlike Cleveland, where a huge chunk of the manufacturing itself took place in the city limits, Pittsburgh hasn't suffered the same physical collapse (empty/abandoned properties etc.). This also means that the work force that was lost was also concentrated outside the city, where you can definitely still see the lasting impact of the job losses.
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Old 04-30-2012, 11:16 AM   #10
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Re: Moving to Pittsburgh, PA

^ It also has more seedlings of a Boston-style knowledge economy than many other rust belt cities, thanks primarily to CMU. It doesn't hurt that the hilliness and funiculars give it a scenic, gritty San Francisco sort of vibe.

Also this:
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/02/09/ga...-location.html
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Old 04-30-2012, 11:54 AM   #11
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Re: Moving to Pittsburgh, PA

My sister went to CMU for grad and undergrad, and she's lived in a few spots around Shadyside and Squirrel Hill. Both seemed great the handful of times I've visited.
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Old 04-30-2012, 12:38 PM   #12
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Re: Moving to Pittsburgh, PA

In terms of nightlife, the places to go are Oakland, South Side, Lawrenceville and Shadyside. There's a designated North Shore club area, I suppose, but it's kind of like the South Boston Waterfront here. The South Side Flats is an interesting stretch along Carson Street with such a sheer quantity and density of bars that it would likely make a typical Boston NIMBY's head explode. It's pretty easy to get there from CMU too, the 75 and the 54[CD] buses go from Craig St.
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Old 04-30-2012, 01:21 PM   #13
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Re: Moving to Pittsburgh, PA

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron Newman View Post
Pittsburgh seems to have escaped the decline that has marred the other Rust Belt cities (Buffalo, Cleveland, Detroit). What's their secret?
From what I understand the City did decline, much like many northern/rust belt/midwestern cities, but has started to reinvent itself, unlike some of the others.

Thanks for the pics and enjoy grad school.
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Old 05-02-2012, 08:39 AM   #14
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Re: Moving to Pittsburgh, PA

Thanks for the input everybody! I kind of fell in love with the city when I visited it. It was never on my list of places to visit, but after going there once I can not wait to go back.
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Old 05-02-2012, 05:29 PM   #15
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Re: Moving to Pittsburgh, PA

Someone got me this book. Great photos.

Pittsburgh, then and now

http://www.amazon.com/Pittsburgh-Then-Now/dp/1592231411
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Old 08-03-2012, 05:51 PM   #16
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Re: Moving to Pittsburgh, PA

so i chose an apartment in Shadyside and am all set to move to Pittsburgh in 2 weeks. Thanks everyone for your help! I'll try to keep the board updated with goings on in the city.
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Old 08-03-2012, 06:36 PM   #17
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Re: Moving to Pittsburgh, PA

Good choice, it's a nice neighborhood with lots of great old houses and streets.
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Old 08-04-2012, 12:54 PM   #18
found5dollar
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Re: Moving to Pittsburgh, PA

^ what really sold me was that it is mostly flat.... no giant hills between me, school, and downtown so biking should be alot easier.
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Old 12-08-2012, 12:25 PM   #19
found5dollar
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Re: Moving to Pittsburgh, PA

For those of you are love cranes, they are erecting the big crane at the new "Tower at PNC Plaza" you can watch it go up on the webcams here: http://www.thetoweratpncplaza.com/
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Old 03-14-2013, 09:08 PM   #20
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Re: Moving to Pittsburgh, PA

Pittsburgh is getting a bike share program next year. They cite how well the one in Boston works in most news stories about it.

http://bikepgh.org/2013/03/11/mayor-...to-pittsburgh/
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