Green space will sprout at former hospital site |

Green space will sprout at former hospital site

Luis Fábregas

Demolition of a big portion of the former Children’s Hospital is nearing completion, making way for rare green space in the heart of Oakland.

The Fifth Avenue site next to UPMC Presbyterian will become a park with benches — at least for the next several years, said Susan Manko, spokeswoman for the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.

UPMC leaders have not settled on a permanent plan for the site, which housed a yellow brick tower and blue-aluminum sided building at Fifth and DeSoto streets. Children’s Hospital closed its Oakland location in May 2009 when it moved to its $625 million Lawrenceville complex.

Manko said it could be three to five years before leaders determine what to do with the Oakland property.

Crews will complete the razing at the end of January, Manko said. Much of the debris from demolition was crushed on site and used for fill.

In early spring, depending on weather, workers will plant grass seed and trees.

Only one tower of the old Children’s Hospital remains — a blue-banded, 477,000-square foot building at the rear of the complex. It adjoins Presby and houses radiology departments and several offices. A UPMC helipad sits above the tower.

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