Menu Contact/Location

Category Archive: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

  1. Downtown Honus Wagner Store has Finally Struck Out

    A sporting goods fixture for 93 years

    Wednesday, January 05, 2011
    By Mark Belko, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

    The Honus Wagner Sporting Goods store on Forbes Avenue is closing after 93 years in business Downtown. Michael Henninger/Post-Gazette

    First it was Gimbels, then Joseph Horne, Kaufmann’s and Candy-Rama. Now another iconic Pittsburgh retailer is preparing to fade from the scene.

    After 93 years Downtown, Honus Wagner Co. sporting goods store plans to close its doors permanently within the next six weeks after a going-out-of-business sale.

    Harriet Shapiro, who co-owns the store with her husband, Murray, said Tuesday that the family, after four generations of ownership, simply had no one left to take over the reins.

    “We’re very sad to see it go. It’s been a Pittsburgh landmark for so many years,” she said.

    While word of the closing filtered out Tuesday, the clock has been ticking on the store for some time. In 2009, Point Park University reached an agreement with the owners on an option to purchase the property as part of its plan to move the Pittsburgh Playhouse Downtown.

    Under terms of the agreement, the university had the right to take over the property once the Shapiros vacate it or in four years, whichever came first.

    Mrs. Shapiro said she and her husband had considered selling the store but were unable to find anyone with an interest in purchasing it.

    She said the store was not closing because of poor business.

    “Absolutely not,” she declared. “It’s a closing sale. It’s not a desperation sale or a bankruptcy sale or anything like that.”

    Opened in 1918 by the legendary Honus Wagner, the Hall of Fame shortstop for the Pirates, the store has been a sports fans oasis Downtown for decades, jam-packed to the rafters with jerseys, jackets, T-shirts, tennis shoes and other merchandise.

    At one time, the store also supplied uniforms for the Pittsburgh Pirates as well as semipro and high school teams in the region.

    The Shapiros purchased the store from Mr. Wagner about 1928. The shop first was housed on Liberty Avenue but moved to its current location on Forbes Avenue nearly 60 years ago.

    On Tuesday, the store with the black-and-gold awning and sign (what else?) was closed for inventory, but will reopen today for its final days.

    Patrons were saddened to hear about its demise.

    Ron Gruendl, spokesman for BNY Mellon Downtown, said he still had a Frank Robinson model baseball bat he bought at the store in the mid-1960s.

    “For many people who grew up and came into the city during the baby boom era, we’re losing part of our childhood,” he said. “Before there was Dick’s [Sporting Goods], before there was anything, it was Honus Wagner. Honus Wagner and Chatham Sports, those were the places.”

    David Vance, a former Pittsburgher who now lives in Hudson, Quebec, just outside of Montreal, remembers driving to the store with a friend to pick up their first Little League uniforms.

    “Along with standing out in the right field [seats] section of Forbes Field hoping to catch a home run and see [Roberto] Clemente up close, that visit to Honus Wagner was a cherished memory of my youth. It will be missed,” he wrote in an e-mail.

    The closing likely will be a boost for Ace Athletic, a sporting goods store that opened on Forbes a short distance from Honus Wagner in September. Manager Tim Piett, however, found no joy Tuesday in knowing that the old store was closing.

    “I worked there 27 years,” he said. “I was very close to the family. They’re very good people.”

    The store will eventually be reborn as a performing arts center. Point Park intends to use it and several adjacent properties it owns to relocate the Pittsburgh Playhouse from Oakland to Downtown. The new complex would feature three theaters ranging from 150 to 500 seats each, production and teaching areas, a residence hall and retail space.

    University spokeswoman Mary Ellen Solomon said the move wouldn’t occur until the second phase of the school’s academic village initiative Downtown and that that was still “several years down the road.”

    For some, though, the promise of new development did little to soothe the pain of seeing another local landmark disappear.

    “It’s sad. It’s a long-standing store in Pittsburgh. Downtown is getting empty,” said Brenda Lane of Scott, who stopped at the store Tuesday, hoping to purchase a Winter Classic T-shirt. “All our retail places are going by the wayside.”

  2. South Side Site Gets Development Go-Ahead

    Retail, apartments slated for former Goodwill headquarters
    Friday, December 24, 2010
    By Mark Belko, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

    A $28 million project to convert the former Goodwill headquarters on the South Side into apartments and retail space is good to go, thanks in part to a $5 million state redevelopment assistance grant.

    The grant, awarded by Gov. Ed Rendell last week, will help close a gap in the financing and enable the project to move forward, city Urban Redevelopment Authority board members were told Thursday when they authorized the receipt of the money.

    Green Tree developer Burns & Scalo Real Estate plans to convert the seven-story building on East Carson Street into 87 market rate apartments and 10,000 square feet of ground level retail space.

    James Scalo, Burns & Scalo president, said he expects the apartments to rent for about $1,500 a month.

    He said the state money will be used to help build a parking garage within the complex, an amenity he believes will be a big selling point. He said it would be the only residential project on the South Side with secure parking within the building.

    With the money committed, Mr. Scalo said he hopes to start demolition work inside the building next month. Construction work is expected to start in April, with an opening slated for spring 2012.

    Burns & Scalo will clean and preserve the facade and also seek to have the Renaissance Revival building listed on the National Register of Historic Places, in part to make the project eligible for historic tax credits, Mr. Scalo said.

    Burns & Scalo came under some fire last summer when it received permission from the city Historic Review Commission to demolish an adjacent Goodwill building to make way for an Aldi supermarket.

    Mr. Scalo said there’s a reason the developer is seeking to preserve the Goodwill headquarters while it demolished the other structure.

    “This building has a lot of historic value. The other one did not,” he said. The structure used to be the mercantile store for the J&L Steel plant on the South Side.

    Also Thursday, the URA board approved a deal that allows Cleveland-based Forest City Enterprises to make a $9 million lump sum payment to the URA to close out a $20.8 million loan dating back to 1984.

    The loan was used to build Liberty Center, the 27-story skyscraper that houses the Westin Convention Center hotel and Federated Investors. Since the loan’s inception, Forest City had made about $9.5 million in payments. The developer, about three weeks ago, approached the URA about discontinuing $400,000 in yearly payments in exchange for one final lump sum amount.

    In agreeing to the deal, the URA will be accepting about $2 million less than the original loan, not including interest. However, Rob Stephany, URA executive director, said there was a chance that future yearly payments, which were tied to cash flow, could decrease, depending on the tower’s occupancy and lease arrangements. He said Forest City originally offered $3.5 million as a lump sum payment.

    A consultant hired by the URA also analyzed the deal and concluded that a $9 million buyout was a “very fair number.”

    Mr. Stephany said the URA plans to reinvest the $9 million in city neighborhoods that are eligible for federal community development block grants.

    “It’s a great opportunity for us,” he said

  3. Report Cites Downtown Dynamics

    Tuesday, January 04, 2011
    By Sally Kalson, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

    Downtown Pittsburgh is a more diverse and dynamic place than it was just seven years ago — more residents, more students and workers, more people riding bikes and running.

    That’s the conclusion of Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership President Michael Edwards, based on the group’s new report about living, working and commuting Downtown.

    Among the findings:

    • The peak age of Downtown residents is 25 to 29.

    • One-third of Downtown residents have incomes of more than $100,000.

    • Of the 126,000 people working Downtown, two-thirds are in the service or finance industries.

    • The proportion of students jumped from 4 percent to 13 percent since 2003.

    • The use of public transit also jumped, from 48 percent to 53 percent in the same period.

    • The average commute to Downtown is 13 miles, or about 38 minutes.

    The report comes from four different surveys conducted in 2010. For the most part, the studies are looking at the “greater Downtown” area that includes the Golden Triangle, the north and south shores, the near-Strip District and Uptown.

    The full report is available at

    Most of the indicators are positive, Mr. Edwards said.

    One piece of data that never registered before is the growing number of people coming Downtown on weekends to exercise. That, he said, speaks to the work of Riverlife, the nonprofit advocacy group, and increased riverfront activity, from kayaking to biking and running the trails.

    “This is the first time we’ve seen that,” Mr. Edwards said. “It shows a more compelling place to locate, with the whole Downtown as your backyard.”

    But there are two trouble spots in the report.

    Commuting costs are up anywhere from 8 percent to 89 percent, looking at parking, gas, bus fares and tolls. At the same time, fewer employers are contributing to those costs with bus passes or discounts. So, while Downtown is holding its own as the region’s employment hub, those costs are a concern for the future.

    Also of concern: The cost of developing new housing Downtown is 25 percent higher than what the market will bear.

    There’s not much the partnership can do about commuting costs, but it does have an idea to lower the cost of building new housing. Mr. Edwards said he and others will be lobbying in Harrisburg for a state historic tax credit, a financing tool that could fill 20 percent of the gap.

    “That would lower the cost to the developer significantly,” he said.

    It only makes sense to make Downtown development more affordable, he said, because the residential population there has more than doubled in the past decade, from 3,050 to 7,260.Right now, the occupancy rate for Downtown residences is 97 percent, so there is good reason to believe that new units would fare just as well.

    For office space, overall occupancy is 90 percent, the highest in 20 years. Hotel occupancy, at 65 percent, is still higher than national average.

    “So we are performing pretty well,” Mr. Edwards said. “This information allows us to tackle the nuances and make things even better.”

    The spike in students is attributable to Pittsburgh CAPA 6-12, Point Park and Duquesne universities and the Art Institute of Pittsburgh. That influx, Mr. Edwards said, adds to the district’s depth because “they come at different times and spend money on different things.”

    For example, comic books.

    “This location thrives off the college students,” said Humes Grossman, a clerk at Comic Book Ink on Smithfield Street.

    Downtown regular Premo Masullo, 40, of Brentwood, is a server at the Omni William Penn Hotel. He’s noticed changes for the better.

    “I’ve been working here almost 20 years, and it’s more thriving than it was 20 years ago,” he said. “There are [more] smaller businesses Downtown. There are more kids, college kids, which increases business.”

    But not every part of Downtown is benefitting equally from the positive trends, said Julina Coupland, 29, of Point Breeze.

    “Pockets of it seem to be [thriving] and others are moving more slowly,” she said. “The Cultural District, the new Market Square are pretty vibrant. But mostly when I’m down here on weekends and evenings, it’s pretty quiet, not a lot is going on.”

    Other findings in the report include:• Average household size increased to 1.5 people from 2008, and 4 percent of households have children.

    • Top reasons for moving Downtown were convenience, desire for city living and appeal of the buildings.

    • Weekly average of spending at Downtown restaurants and retailers was $183.

    • Four in 10 commuters are ages 35 or younger.

    • The Boulevard of the Allies is mostly traveled by students.

    • Market Square and Fifth Avenue are among the busiest pedestrian areas due to recent revitalization.

    Staff writer Katie Park contributed. Sally Kalson: or 412-263-1610.

  4. Richland Farm Will Be Converted to Classrooms

    Thursday, December 30, 2010
    By Jacob Flannick

    Sustaining local agriculture and preserving the environment will be important areas of focus during construction of Chatham University’s Eden Hall Campus in Richland, Chatham’s president told the Pine-Richland school board at its last meeting.

    Many of the barns at the 388-acre farm on Ridge Road that will accommodate Chatham’s new School of Sustainability and the Environment will be converted into facilities and classrooms, Chatham president Esther Barrazzone said Dec. 20.

    The new school will offer programs such as an environmental learning lab, initiatives in sustainability and environmental studies, food studies, landscape architecture and women’s studies.

    Also at the Dec. 20 board meeting, Eden Hall Upper Elementary School principal Robert Cooper brought the board up to date on the school’s bully-free initiatives.

    Assistant principal Joe Domagala, guidance counselor Melissa Sullivan and fifth-grade teacher Ryan Woods participated in the presentation.

    Mainly focusing on the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program, Mr. Domagala discussed the importance of a proactive approach.

    “Everyone has to be on board with what we’re promoting to our school,” he said, encouraging student, parent and faculty involvement. But some board members expressed concern about the program.

    Scott Stedeford said it targeted students who are too young for it, and that youngsters labeled bullies might have a difficult transition to middle school because of it.

    Board President Stephen Hawbaker noted the importance of rewarding students who report bullying. “We must have our students confident in reporting things,” he said.

    The board also discussed the district’s price rates for patrons to use district facilities. Board members in April unveiled a proposed schedule for charging fees to rent school facilities, including $15 per hour for a classroom, $100 per use for some athletic fields and $1,000 plus electricity for use of the high school stadium.

  5. What’s next: Authorities Plan to Revitalize Jeannette

    Thursday, December 30, 2010

    Mayor Robert Carter said he would be “trying to do more” during his second year in office in Jeannette.

    He wants to get more houses up and sold along South Sixth Street. As part of a $31 million effort to revamp the city, 25 new, single-family homes and a nine-unit townhouse complex have already been built there.

    He wants to raze dilapidated facilities in the city — including the old Fourth Avenue Hotel, one of the city’s earliest landmarks; its land is slated to become a parking area.

    He wants the former PNC Bank property on Clay and Fourth avenues sold — which he expects will be easier with a new parking area behind it.

    And, he wants to invite visitors and make sure people know that Jeannette is “a full-service city,” he said.

    “We want to make this a welcoming community,” he said.

    A new Dollar General store that opened on Clay Avenue this year is proof Jeannette is still a great place to do business, he said.

    “What we don’t have in manufacturing anymore, we have in stores and restaurants,” he said.

    He said residents of neighboring communities still visit Jeannette to eat at The Nest, a seafood and steak restaurant on Clay Avenue, and DeNunzio’s, an Italian restaurant on Lowry Avenue.

    Businesses in the industrial park will join those eateries on the city’s tax rolls next year as the tax breaks expire.

    With more money being added to Jeannette’s bottom line, city clerk Michael Minyon is optimistic.

    “I can feel we’re starting to turn a corner,” he said.

    Council approved a $5.4 million budget this month that holds the tax rate at 32.62 mills.

    One mill generates about $64,000 for the city.

    Council also voted this month to raise some of its fees, a move that is expected to bring in more than $300,000 to the city, according to Mr. Minyon.

    Earned income tax will be raised by 0.15 percent. Garbage fees will increase from $10.80 a month to $13.50 a month. And the mechanical device fee is doubling from $150 a year to $300 a year.

    “These moves will help the city move forward,” Mr. Carter said.

    But he’s mindful as he moves forward, remembering the nearly $1 million deficit accumulated in Jeannette during the last few years.

    “We worked hard this year to correct mistakes of the past. We don’t want to start making them again,” he said.

    — Candy Woodall

  6. Golden Triangle Buildings Could Get Face-Lifts

    Sunday, December 26, 2010
    By Mark Belko, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

    The city is looking to brighten up some “dark corners” Downtown.

    Aided by a $4 million state redevelopment assistance grant, the Urban Redevelopment Authority hopes to target rundown buildings Downtown and work with property owners to upgrade them.

    The project is designed to supplement a larger revitalization in the Golden Triangle that already has included the construction of the Three PNC Plaza office tower and the redevelopment of a former five-and-dime store and a department store into residential, retail and other uses.

    With much of that work completed, the URA has decided to go after properties “in need of some reinvestment” — not to buy but to approach and work with the owners about making improvements.

    “This is really a building-by-building, block-by-block approach,” said Yarone Zober, URA board chairman and chief of staff to Mayor Luke Ravenstahl.

    Mr. Zober said the genesis for the idea came during walks he and Mr. Ravenstahl had Downtown.

    “One thing the mayor and I noticed at street level were individual buildings that needed work … or didn’t have street-level appeal. They detracted from the general feel and look of the Downtown corridor,” he said.

    “It became very clear that we needed new tools to continue the revitalization of Downtown.”

    Funds from the grant, awarded by Gov. Ed Rendell earlier this month, can be used to make facade improvements or to address “life safety” issues that prevent property owners from using upper floors for residences or other purposes.

    Life-safety improvements could include stairwells, elevators or other measures to bring buildings up to code. URA executive director Rob Stephany said such improvements typically run $250,000 at the minimum.

    While projects like Three PNC, Piatt Place and Market Square Place have helped to transform Downtown, there are other buildings still in need of work, including some near the upscale Capital Grille restaurant at Fifth Avenue and Wood Street, Mr. Stephany said.

    “You go to wait for the valet to bring your car back and there’s blight staring you in the face,” he said.

    Properties the city initially is targeting for possible work include the Thompson Building on Market Street between Fifth and Market Square and a building owned by the Order of Italian Sons & Daughters of America at Wood and Forbes Avenue that once housed a McDonald’s restaurant.

    Also on the list are three buildings at the western corner of Fifth and Wood that house a jewelry store and other retail outlets and a couple of buildings on Wood owned by the URA itself.

    Mr. Zober said the URA already has had discussions with the property owners about potential improvements.

    David Kashi, owner of the Fifth and Wood properties, said he hopes to secure funds to upgrade the facades of the buildings. He plans to install new windows and perhaps add a marquee to the front of the buildings. He also is thinking about placing a “big clock” on the corner building.

    “We’re going to make Downtown beautiful,” he said.

    Mr. Kashi said he already has had one meeting with the URA and plans to have another next month to work out plans and budgeting. He had no estimate for the cost of improvements.

    He likes the city initiative.

    “Downtown is the center of the whole Pittsburgh area. I think it’s about time someone took the initiative and improved the look. Nothing has changed in 50 or more years,” he said.

    Improving the overall ambiance also “attracts investors to bring money into Downtown Pittsburgh,” he said.

    The program will require property owners to match amounts received from the URA. Mr. Kashi is not thrilled about having to do so but said he would to increase the value and curb appeal of his properties.

    The Thompson Building, which once housed the Ciao Baby restaurant, is owned by the Pittsburgh History & Landmarks Foundation, which already has redeveloped three adjoining buildings at Market Street and Fifth.

    Arthur Ziegler Jr., president of the foundation, said the organization plans to restore the facade of the Thompson Building, which likely will play host to some type of restaurant, bar or cafe.

    Mr. Ziegler said the building once housed a restaurant operated by the Chicago-based Thompson restaurant chain. The chain at one time had six restaurants in Pittsburgh, but the Market Square building is the only one that has survived.

    It was purchased by John R. Thompson in 1926, but dates back farther than that, perhaps to the turn of the century.

    “It is an important part of Pittsburgh history,” Mr. Ziegler said.

    Besides restoring the exterior, the foundation will “try to meet the green standards that we’ve established down there and we want to get the building in service as soon as possible in 2011,” he said.

    The foundation spent $3 million restoring the original facades of the three adjoining buildings, which house a men’s clothing store, a shoe store and apartments. It plans to make a substantial investment in the Thompson Building but also is looking for help from the URA to fill in the gap.

    “We did not do that with the first three buildings. We provided the funds. We need some help with this fourth one,” Mr. Ziegler said.

    Like Mr. Kashi, Mr. Ziegler believes there is a need for the type of program the URA is starting.

    “I think it’s excellent. We need to continue to recognize the value of these historic buildings and improve their exteriors and their basic interiors to meet building codes,” he said.

    At the site of the former McDonald’s restaurant, the city would like to remove the burnt-orange metal facade that covers the upper floors and restore the building’s original exterior.

    Mr. Ziegler said that underneath the current facade the building features an attractive stone architecture. “It was a handsome corner and we would like to see it be that again,” he said.

    Officials at the Order of Italian Sons and Daughters could not be reached for comment.

    While the URA has targeted some real estate, any Downtown building owner interested in upgrading a property can contact the agency about possible aid, Mr. Zober said.

    The city’s effort is unrelated to six acquisitions totaling $15.15 million made by an unidentified buyer on the east side of a block bordered by Wood, Fifth and Forbes over the past eight months.

    While the identity of the buyer is not known, many in the real estate community believe it is PNC Financial Services Group, which built Three PNC Plaza. A PNC spokesman has said, “We don’t comment on speculation.”

    There’s much talk that the block could be the site of the next big development Downtown. In the meantime, the city is hoping to fill in the cracks.

    “Our goal is to really make Downtown look complete,” Mr. Zober said.

  7. Collier to Preserve Historic Photographs

    Thursday, December 23, 2010
    By Carole Gilbert Brown

    The decision by Collier commissioners to spend $1,134.20 to scan and frame historical township photographs is an award winner for Gene Czambel, 67, of Steen Hollow Road.

    Mr. Czambel, a lifelong resident who traces his family’s roots in Collier back to 1882, has been on a crusade for several years to preserve the township’s history through photographs and other memorabilia.

    He has offered 16 photos from the Beechmont area and beyond to be scanned and framed so that residents can view them in the township building and the Nike Site property. Many date back to the early 20th century and late 19th century.

    If the township forms a historical society, he promises to donate the originals, as well as about 30 more historical photographs.

    “I have a museum here between my dad, grandfather and great-grandfather,” he said.

    But, with no descendants, he adds, “When I’m gone, it’s gone.”

    Among the approximately 50 photos are shots of the Pittsburgh Coal Co.’s Essen No. 2 Mine in Burdine, a photograph of the now-gone Beechmont School with his mother shown, too, as well as pictures of the former town of Hickman, which was named after farmer Joseph Hickman but developed by Mr. Czambel’s great-grandfather, who was an engineer and entrepreneur.

    Burdine, Beechmont and Hickman have been incorporated into what is now Collier.

    The town burned down in a fire, but included at one time a post office, store, and a hotel with a bar. Mr. Czambel even has photographs of the fire.

    Mr. Czambel has donated photographs to other area communities, too, including Bridgeville, Carnegie and Oakdale.

    Besides photographs, he possesses historical memorabilia, too. For example, the cement pads that once were in front of the boys’ and girls’ outhouses at Beechmont School are now in his front yard.

    Anyone interested in donating historical photographs or memorabilia, or in helping to form a historical society, should contact the township.

  8. Washington County Farm on Statewide Danger List

    Monday, December 20, 2010
    By Len Barcousky, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

    A Washington County farm that has been operated by the same family for more than 200 years has been included on a list of 10 historic sites most at risk across Pennsylvania.

    Longwall coal mining could harm several historic buildings at Plantation Plenty in Independence Township, according to Preservation Pennsylvania. The nonprofit organization released its list of endangered properties on Thursday.

    State and federal environmental and preservation regulations require an analysis of the impact of commercial activities like mining on historic properties, according to Erin Hammerstedt, a field representative for Preservation Pennsylvania and the National Trust for Historic Preservation.

    “Our goal would be to keep longwall mining out of this historic farm,” she said.

    Preservation Pennsylvania is a private membership organization that seeks to protect historically and architecturally significant properties. The National Trust for Historic Preservation, created by Congress in 1949, plays a similar role across the country.

    Plantation Plenty has been operated since 1800 by Isaac Manchester and his descendants. Joseph Pagliarulo and his wife, Margie, who is a Manchester descendant, acquired the 400 acres in 2005 and now run it as an organic farm, producing milk, beef, pork and vegetables.

    The Manchester family had sold coal rights to the property in 1915, except for three acres under the farmhouse and other nearby buildings. The mining rights are owned by Penn Ridge Coal, a subsidiary of Alliance Resource Partners, a Tulsa, Okla.-based coal producer with $1.2 billion in revenues.

    While longwall mining would never occur directly under the farmstead, major mine subsidence nearby still could damage the structures, Ms. Hammerstedt said. Another possible side-effect of the mining could be to degrade or ruin the farm’s water supply by fracturing the rock that feeds its springs and wells, according to Preservation Pennsylvania.

    Penn Ridge has not yet applied for mining permits, Mr. Pagliarulo said, but he fears “it is just a matter of time.” He said it is not financially possible for him and his wife to buy back the coal rights.

    An end to farming on the Manchester property would represent a cultural and environmental loss, he said.

    “This property has been in my wife’s family for more than 200 years,” he said. “A visit here lets you step back in time … and see how 18th and 19th century farming took place.”

    Two other Western Pennsylvania properties or areas are on the preservation organization’s list.

    Holland Hall in Meadville, which has been vacant for 15 years, is in danger of demolition, according to Preservation Pennsylvania. The poor condition of the building — many interior walls and electrical, plumbing and heating mixtures have been removed — make it attractive to a buyer who would tear it down and replace it with a new structure.

    Holland Hall was built in 1899 by A.C. Huidekoper, a Civil War veteran who made fortunes in coal, iron, oil and railroad businesses. The Gilded Age mansion was built around a smaller red-brick building constructed in 1804. Mr. Huidekoper and his wife, Frances, had lived in the smaller structure before the larger house was built.

    Following the death of Mrs. Huidekoper, Holland Hall was sold and used as a fraternity house from 1935 to 1995. Plans to redevelop it as a conference center and bed-and-breakfast fell through.

    “In order to prevent the demolition or continued neglect of Holland Hall, a buyer interested in acquiring and rehabilitating this architecturally significant building is needed,” according to “Pennsylvania at Risk 2010,” the organization’s newsletter.

    Plans for a wind farm on the crest of Evitts Mountain in Bedford County’s Bedford Township could endanger a rural historic district known as Dutch Corner, according to Preservation Pennsylvania.

    Dutch Corner has more than 30 farmsteads and a historic school, church and several cemeteries.

    Plans to build 24 wind turbines on the ridge above the valley would require blasting and filling to construct concrete foundation pads and to bury a transmission cable, according to the organization. It also warns that noise from the wind turbines would disturb the neighborhood’s rural character while the blasting could affect water supplies.

    Preservation Pennsylvania does not oppose either longwall mining or wind farms in general, Ms. Hammerstedt said. “There are places where these activities are a good thing,” she said. “But there are other areas where these projects are not appropriate, because they would endanger historic buildings or landscape features.”

    Preservation Pennsylvania’s 2010 list of at-risk sites is available on its Web site,

Pittsburgh History & Landmarks Foundation

100 West Station Square Drive, Suite 450

Pittsburgh, PA 15219

Phone: 412-471-5808  |  Fax: 412-471-1633