16th Street Bridge-Developments

      

The southern end of the 16th Street Bridge soars over an area that is currently provoking controversy in the city.  It is a site where there are what feels like be miles of barren (although used) parking lots right up against the river on either side of the bridge.  It is a very un-pedestrian-friendly area and a very unattractive place.  Alongside these parking lots on one side of the bridge is the historically significant produce terminal building.  While a developer has put forward a plan to redevelop the area, connecting the existing Strip District to the Allegheny River and adding new mixed development in place of the parking lots, part of the plan requires a partial demolition of the produce terminal.  (A description of this intended development can be read in the article linked here.)

In the beginning of June, City Councilman Dowd began holding up funding for the project, saying he wanted more information about how the funding was to be used (see article).  Then about a week ago, two more councilmen voiced their wish for more information about the use of the funding as well as other aspects of the project such as how the community has been engaged (see article).  Another newspaper article from a few days ago, describes a lawsuit being filed about the property and the development.  This article explains, “The lawsuit alleges that the city is not following its own stormwater management program nor that of the federal Environmental Protection Agency in allowing the project.”

Based on what I’m learning in my internship this summer, this seems like the opposition against, or at least concerns, about the project are piling high enough to prevent the development from happening.  As I am not a fan of harsh, stark parking lots currently in place, it would be a shame for the project to fall through.  However, if the claims of the opposition are true, then it seems we need to find someone else to develop the site.  As awful as the parking lots are, their removal is not worth the price of poorly spent funds, no community engagement, and poor storm water management.  The last concern is the most significant given the fact that the city’s storm water management already causes problems.  (For more related to this issue seen my Heth’s Run Bridge post.)

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2 thoughts on “16th Street Bridge-Developments

  1. Pingback: Three Sisters: 9th Street Bridge | urbantraipsing

  2. Pingback: The Last Allegheny River Bridge | urbantraipsing

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