Archive

ShareThis Page
Penguins agree to cap height of buildings | TribLIVE.com
Allegheny

Penguins agree to cap height of buildings

Tribune-Review
| Wednesday, November 5, 2014 12:01 a.m

The Penguins plan to scale back the height of buildings that would be built on the former Civic Arena property in response to residents’ fears they would obscure views of the Downtown skyline and St. Benedict The Moor Church.

Team representatives told the Pittsburgh Planning Commission on Tuesday that they would cap the height on buildings in the northwest corner of the 28-acre Hill District property and on Centre Avenue leading to the church.

Buildings in the northwest corner closest to the U.S. Steel Tower would be a maximum of 700 feet. Original plans put no limit on height. The Steel Tower, by comparison, is 841 feet tall.

Buildings along Centre Avenue would be built at a maximum height of 50 feet if they abut sidewalks and a maximum of 120 feet if they’re back from the road so travelers have a view of St. Benedict. Original plans called for a 100-foot height limit on buildings abutting sidewalks.

“We’re going to continue to work with the community on the views to make sure the views are not being as impacted as they would suggest,” said Travis Williams, the Penguins chief operating officer.

He added that buildings wouldn’t necessarily reach maximum heights outlined in the plans.

Residents have complained that towering buildings would block views of Downtown, the landmark church and adjacent Freedom Corner, the site of historic civil rights activity in the 1960s and 1970s.

They say the changes are an improvement but not an ideal solution.

“It still is blocking the view and still creating a barrier,” said Wrenna Watson, a Hill District resident and former Planning Commission chairwoman.

Williams and development consultants briefed the commission on preliminary land development plans in anticipation of a public hearing in two weeks. The commission will consider the plans for approval after hearing public comment.

The Penguins have exclusive development rights to the property and are proposing a $400 million mix of apartments, offices, hotels, entertainment venues and green space.

The city-county Sports and Exhibition Authority, which owns the property along with the Pittsburgh Urban Redevelopment Authority, has started improvements on sewage infrastructure on the site and is seeking bids to build streets.

Construction is scheduled to begin next year.

Bob Bauder is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-765-2312 or bbauder@tribweb.com.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.