Category Archive: Lighting Historic Resources
By Diana Nelson Jones,Pittsburgh Post-GazetteMonday, April 28, 2008
The Pittsburgh History & Landmarks Foundation has joined forces with N&P Properties to control the development of almost a block of buildings on Market Street, between Fifth Avenue and Market Square, Downtown.
Two five-story buildings in that block are now shells in the process of renovation into seven apartments, and a third will join the other two as retail space on the sidewalk level.
The foundation last week bought the Thompson Bakery building, which now houses the restaurant Ciao Baby, and N&P bought the Buhl Building at the entrance to Market Street at Fifth Avenue and gave the foundation an easement in perpetuity to protect the architectural integrity and terra-cotta facade.
The Pittsburgh History & Landmarks Foundation is forming a new nonprofit corporation to expand its activities in neighborhood and urban revitalization.
Mark Bibro, chairman of the South Side-based preservationist organization, announced Monday the foundation had hired Howard B. Slaughter Jr., who recently left his job as director of Fannie Mae’s Pittsburgh Community Business Center, as the unit’s CEO.
The new nonprofit — Landmarks Community Capital Inc. — will provide equity and debt financing for housing and economic development in Western Pennsylvania, eastern Ohio and West Virginia, said Arthur P. Ziegler Jr., the foundation’s president.
“This broadens the tools with which we can work,” said Ziegler, who also will serve as the new corporation’s president. “It enables us to tap the capital markets on a broader basis, and we can do more things within the very broad interpretation under which we operate for historic preservation.”
Cities and towns throughout Western Pennsylvania are historic, but restoring historic buildings isn’t the only way they can be revitalized, Ziegler said.
“You need new construction, you need new businesses on Main Street, or you may need new housing or new forms of green energy,” he said.
The idea of the new corporation is to raise funds through grants, loans and investments that the foundation can use for grants, loans and investments in such projects. Roles it can play include developer, co-developer or lender to community-development corporations and others that undertake such work.
It also hopes to contract with government and private agencies to define such projects and conduct feasibility studies for them, according to a news release. Goals include expanding regional employment, promoting energy conservation and assisting in rural and farm economic development.
“There is an opportunity in the market to provide appropriate financing for existing and new developments independently and in collaboration with other financial intermediaries and developers,” said Slaughter, 49. His appointment is effective Oct. 15.
Ron DaParma can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 412-320-7907.
Four area schools of higher education will share in a $200,000 Getty Foundation grant aimed at preserving the individual campuses’ historic buildings and landscapes.
Each of the four schools — Seton Hill University, Washington & Jefferson College, Indiana University of Pennsylvania and California University of Pennsylvania — also contributed $10,000 to the effort.
The Pittsburgh History & Landmarks Foundation announced the Campus Heritage grant. A foundation team will begin studying the schools this month, concluding in March 2009.
“The benefit is they get a very complete analysis of their historic buildings,” said Arthur P. Ziegler Jr., president of the Pittsburgh History & Landmarks Foundation. “Even if they are in perfect condition, they get a plan for future maintenance; recommendations for restoration; disability (improvements); and landscaping — down to how to prune a bush properly that might have been there 50 years.”
The individual reports, Ziegler said, can assist the schools with fund-raising to implement specific plans.
According to the Getty Foundation Web site, each of the schools exhibits a range of design in its academic buildings, distinctive campus planning and landscapes, and individual structures that represent American architectural history both locally and nationally.
“They all have historic buildings, and/-or historic landscapes,” Ziegler said. “They are small in size, not likely to apply individually. And they are within easy travel distance for our team. And they were very cooperative. … We went to several and said: ‘In our view, you would qualify.’ These four were very enthusiastic.”
Seton Hill’s winding entrance drive is lined by 80 sycamore trees that are 100 years old, spokeswoman Becca Baker said. She called its historic buildings “a campus treasure.”
“Once we receive the conservation plan for Seton Hill — which will detail the PHLF’s recommendations for the preservation, conservation and continued use of our historic buildings — we plan to incorporate the recommendations into our campus master plan,” Baker said.
McMillan Hall, built in 1793, and Old Main, built in 1836, are Washington & Jefferson College’s flagship buildings, said Kristen Gurdin, director of foundation and legal affairs. McMillan Hall is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
“One of the unique features of Old Main is that it has two towers,” Gurdin said.
After the Civil War, Washington College and Jefferson College united because of the loss of student soldiers. The towers represent the two schools.
“One of the benefits (of the study) will be the strategic assessment of the campus all at one time,” Gurdin said.
IUP’s Sutton Hall and Breezedale Alumni Center, and California’s Old Main, are all listed on the National Register of Historic Places — a consideration in their candidacies for the Getty grant, Ziegler said.
“During this final year of the Campus Heritage initiative,” said Getty Foundation Director Deborah Marrow in a news release, “we are pleased to fund the preservation planning for four of Pennsylvania’s historically important campuses.”
Two years ago, a similar grant was awarded to Allegheny College, Geneva College, Slippery Rock University and Grove City College. The earlier round of grants included funding from the Allegheny Foundation, said Ziegler.
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Pittsburgh History & Landmarks Foundation announced today it has received a Campus Heritage grant from the Getty Foundation. It will enable Landmarks to undertake conservation planning studies of buildings and landscapes of four major Western Pennsylvania colleges and universities: Seton Hill, Washington and Jefferson, Indiana U. of PA, and California U. of PA. This is the second Campus Heritage grant to Landmarks from the Getty Foundation.
“The Getty’s peer review committee is impressed by Pittsburgh History and Landmarks Foundation emphasis upon collaboration among several educational institutions,” said Getty Foundation Director, Deborah Marrow. During this final year of the Campus Heritage initiative, we are pleased to fund the preservation planning for four of Pennsylvania’s historically important campuses.”
The purpose of the Campus Heritage program is to encourage colleges and universities to develop preservation plans for their historic buildings and landscapes. Getty Foundation awarded a previous grant to Landmarks in 2005 to enable it to study the historic campuses of Allegheny College, Geneva College, Slippery Rock University, and Grove City College. The reports of Landmarks were enthusiastically received by the presidents, staff, faculty and students of all four institutions and has already resulted in successful fund-raising by the schools to begin to implement the plans.
“This grant brings notable and significant outside recognition and assistance to our rich collection of historic colleges and universities scattered throughout Western Pennsylvania, “said Arthur Ziegler, President of Landmarks. We look forward to another year of intensive activity together with developing educational programs with these institutions to involve faculty, students, and staff in a useful learning process with the professional staff and consultants of Landmarks.”
The work will begin in July and be concluded by March 31, 2009. The team will be Eugene Matta, Landmarks Director of Real Estate and Special Development Projects, who will manage the project; Thomas Keffer, Property Restoration Manager; Landmarks Design Associates, architects; and Liberto Landscape Design, all of whom are local and who worked successfully on the first Campus Heritage Grant.
October 31, 2006
“Preservation In Pittsburgh” Keynote address of Arthur P. Ziegler, Jr. at the 2006 National Preservation Conference held in Pittsburgh, PA, October 31, 2006
Pilot project illuminates buildings’ facades on East Carson Street
Sunday, September 04, 2005
By Mark Belko, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
For the South Side, Light-Up Night will come Thursday.
That’s when the facade of Maul Building, a prominent East Carson Street structure, will be illuminated for the first time under a pilot project to highlight significant architecture and to add to the vibrancy of the historic district.
It is one of two East Carson Street buildings to receive facade lighting as part of the project, spearheaded by the South Side Local Development Co. The other is The Bridge, a restaurant at 2302 East Carson St. named for its proximity to the Birmingham Bridge.
“To us, it was a way to brighten the district by night. To us, it was a way to take the South Side architectural features recognized by day and to extend that to all hours, really,” said Amy Camp, manager of marketing and communications for the South Side Local Development Co.
Lighting for the two buildings totaled about $18,000. Costs were shared by Peter Gordon, an owner of the Maul Building, Seth Carpien, owner of The Bridge restaurant, the city Urban Redevelopment Authority and Pittsburgh History & Landmarks Foundation.
The facade of The Bridge, a Victorian Italianate building erected in the 1800s, has been illuminated since July. Camp said the intersection at the Birmingham Bridge is considered a gateway to the South Side, making the building a good choice.
Carpien, who has owned the restaurant for about a year, said he invested in the project as a way to get involved in the South Side and to help generate business.
“I love it,” he said of the up lighting effect, designed to highlight building features. “It’s kind of neat when I come across the Birmingham Bridge at night. It really looks beautiful. It really shows the architecture, accentuates the Victorian architecture.”
Carpien said his business has increased over the last year, but he wasn’t sure it was the lighting that has attracted the customers, noting that the SouthSide Works commercial complex is close by.
“But I would assume [the building] would get a lot more notice coming across the bridge,” he said.
Erected during the reign of Queen Victoria of England, the building is patterned after Italian Renaissance villas. Window shapes vary floor to floor and are capped with decorative stone hoods.
The Maul Building, at 1700 East Carson Street, is considered a South Side landmark. Built in 1910, the building is done in American Renaissance style and is clad in terra cotta. There also are three-dimensional carvings of faces of women and Native Americans on the building.
The architect, William G. Wilkins Co., also was responsible for the North Side building that is home to the Andy Warhol Museum.
“It’s like no other building on the South Side,” Camp said. “It’s just so ornate that we’re really happy that [the lighting] worked out.”
Gordon said he was happy to assist in the effort.
“It’s a particularly attractive facade. I believe in the South Side and I think the South Side Local Development Co. does good work,” he said.
“I’m really glad they picked one of mine as one of the very first to be up lighted. Hopefully, in the future, there will be many more.”
Camp said her agency is looking into the possibility of extending the program to other buildings on East Carson Street.
“It would be ideal to be able to see some of the architecturally significant buildings lighted, however that happens. It’s not quite there yet. It would be wonderful to see,” she said. “There’s definitely interest on the part of the business district and individual property owners.”
Cathy McCollom, Pittsburgh History & Landmarks chief programs officer, said the lighting of the two buildings and others “could serve as a visual draw from one end of Carson to the other.”
McCollom had suggested the lighting of facades along East Carson to the South Side Local Development Co. after seeing the way in which light was used to illuminate buildings in a number of other cities, including Chicago. Station Square’s Landmarks Building, where McCollom’s organization has its offices, also is lighted.
The Maul Building and The Bridge will be illuminated from dusk to 2 a.m. each day. Chas DeLisio, of Makato Architecture and Design, was the lighting consultant for the project.
Thursday’s ceremony and celebration will start at 8 p.m. with the lighting of the Maul Building. A reception will follow at The Bridge. There also will be performances by the Zany Umbrella Circus, which does fire juggling and other routines using light.
The South Side is the second area of the city in the last year to organize a project to illuminate building fronts. Last December, 17 buildings on Penn Avenue, Downtown got the same treatment through a program put together by the Downtown Living Initiative and Duquesne Light Co.
(Mark Belko can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 412-263-1262.)
This article appeared in the Pittsburgh Post Gazette. © Pittsburgh Post Gazette
March 3, 2005
Pittsburgh History & Landmarks Foundation’s $2,000 grant to South Side Local Development Company (SSLDC) launched the inaugural East Carson Street Architectural Lighting Program. The two buildings to be lighted this year are the historic Maul Building at 1700 East Carson Street and the handsome Bridge Cafe at 2302-2304 East Carson Street.
The lighting of these key historic landmarks located at intersections for highest visibility will be some time this spring.
Laura Beres, Business Policy Specialist for SSLDC said, “Only through the generous support of Pittsburgh History & Landmarks Foundation could we highlight the handsome architecture on South Side and celebrate the historic nature of the district.”
Next year SSLDC hopes to light five more buildings, and to date, the $2,000 grant from Landmarks has leveraged an additional $18,000 to launch this significant program. We hope that such a program will be modeled in our city’s other significant historic commercial corridors.
By Dave Copeland
Monday, October 6, 2003
It was an honest mistake: In one of the first dozen or so articles I wrote for the Trib, I inadvertently called the Roberto Clemente Bridge the “Sixth Street Bridge.”
Twenty or so phone calls and several e-mail messages later, I had learned a valuable lesson about my new hometown: Pittsburghers take their sports heroes and their bridges very seriously.
Nearly four years later, I know all of the region’s landmark bridges (although I still don’t know why Pittsburghers have a fear of crossing bridges). But I still think my mistake is forgivable, given the fact that seemingly every bridge in the region is painted the same shade of Majestic Pee Yellow.
Oh wait, that’s Aztec Yellow, according to City Councilman William Peduto, who says he’s as bored with the color as the rest of us. So much so that he fired off a letter to Gov. Ed Rendell when work was completed on the 16th Street Bridge and it was painted — yawn — Aztec Yellow.
Peduto is hoping that someone will listen to a recommendation made by the Pittsburgh History & Landmarks Foundation a few years ago to think about painting the bridges different colors. He’s still waiting for a response from Rendell. In the meantime, he’s come up with an idea to get the ball rolling.
“The Roberto Clemente Bridge, when it’s lit up at night, is beautiful from almost any angle in the city,” Peduto said. “Then you have the other two behind it, and they just look dull.”
So Peduto wants to find corporate sponsors who will foot the bill for upgrading the Seventh and Ninth street bridges.
He’d like to see the Seventh Street Bridge — which connects the Andy Warhol Museum on the North Side to the Golden Triangle’s Cultural District — painted ultraviolet purple and named after the artist. The Ninth Street Bridge — which links the environmentally friendly convention center with the Allegheny Valley — could be painted green and named after noted environmentalist Rachel Carson.
“You’re looking at three people who have had a great impact on the region. One in sports, one in art and one in science and literature,” Peduto said.
Unlike many people in the region, Peduto sees the bridges as important pieces of the region’s history — not the barriers that have been safely protecting the North Hills from the South Hills (and vice versa) for several generations.
“We have so many opportunities to use our bridges to make the region unique,” Peduto said. “Or we can just ignore them and keep painting them Aztec Yellow.”
Dave Copeland is a reporter for the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. He can be reached at email@example.com or (412) 320-7922.
This article appeared in the Pittsburgh Tribune Review © Pittsburgh Tribune Review