Downtown Pittsburgh

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA


Most Pittsburghers notice the billboard while they’re watching the Buccos on the North Side. Soft light beams from a triangle slowly rotating within a rectangular sign on a rooftop in the downtown Cultural District. No words or pictures float through the display, just the revolving shapes.

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA


Behind a chain link fence on Montana Street in Pittsburgh's Perry North neighborhood lies a brick maintenance building, a looming radio tower and a collection of discarded satellites.

Allison Turrell / Flickr

The YMCA of Greater Pittsburgh said it will close its Downtown location next month after filing for bankruptcy this week.

@HARSavesLives on Twitter / Humane Animal Rescue

Four peregrine falcon chicks have been removed from a nest at the top of a Third Avenue building in downtown Pittsburgh.

They arrived Tuesday at the Humane Animal Rescue Wildlife Center, according to the group, where the chicks were examined and banded with trackers.

Kailey Love / 90.5 WESA

On a bright, breezy day in downtown Pittsburgh, the sound of church bells echoed up and down several blocks following a ceremony at Trinity Cathedral Episcopal to celebrate the rededication of their 10 church bells.

Megan Harris / 90.5 WESA

The resident population of greater Downtown Pittsburgh grew by 3,000 between 2010 and 2017, according to a new report from the Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership. The Golden Triangle's population alone grew by 43 percent.

Courtesy of Kate St. John / Outside My Window

A family of peregrine falcons have enjoyed high-rise living in Pittsburgh since 1991, when a pair set up house in the Gulf Tower. The peregrines have moved around in the decades since, and now their new landlord isn't too happy with their tenancy.

Pittsburgh Cultural Trust

Downtown Pittsburgh today is known, in part, for the entertainment it hosts. It's a place one can see Broadway shows, art galleries and music festivals, sometimes all in the same night. But in the not-so-distant past, a section of the city was home to a different type of entertainment.

Sarah Kovash / 90.5 WESA

A summer music series, public art and spaces for local makers are all on the docket for Pittsburgh this year, according to the Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership.

The PDP says it expanded its arts programming in 2017, which included 300 days of Downtown programming, increased social media outreach and the launch of new events including Halloween's Fright Up Night. 

Sarah Schneider / WESA

What does the typical work day for the head of a major arts organization look like? According to Janis Burley Wilson, it’s unpredictable. Burley Wilson is the newly appointed President and CEO of the August Wilson Center for African American Culture

Bill O'Driscoll / 90.5 WESA

There aren’t many museums of cartoon art in the U.S. The handful of examples include Pittsburgh’s ToonSeum, which was launched in a hallway in the Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh in 2007, and two years later expanded into a storefront on Liberty Avenue downtown.

Its smartly curated exhibits have explored everything from daily newspaper strips and superhero comics to the work of local comics star Ed Piskor, of Hip Hop Family Tree fame.

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

Downtown Pittsburgh’s holiday traditions have changed over the years. But starting Saturday, a new exhibit at the Heinz History Center takes visitors back in time.

Louis Stein / Arcade Comedy Theater

A growing non-profit theater in downtown Pittsburgh has a new home.

Arcade Comedy Theater is moving from its original storefront space on Liberty Avenue, where it’s been since 2013, to a fully renovated building right down the street. The new space more than doubles its capacity to nearly 200 seats between two stages.

Arcade offers about 10 weekly shows, including sketch comedy, stand-up and improv. It’s also enrolled hundreds of students in its comedy classes.

Jake Savitz / 90.5 WESA

The 900 block of Liberty Avenue downtown in getting a makeover.

Renovations started Monday to add a temporary curb extension, bus lane and parking lane to the stretch. 

Margaret J. Krauss / 90.5 WESA

A large granite stone fell from the corner of the historic Frick Building in downtown Pittsburgh early Sunday morning, crashing into the crosswalk below.

Ally Ruggieri / 90.5 WESA

For the 12th year, furries have descended on Pittsburgh for the annual Anthrocon at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center.

This year’s theme is: “Take me out to the Ballgame” and runs through Sunday.

It’s considered one of the largest furry conventions in the world and organizers estimated that about 8,000 people are taking part this year. 

All weekend, Pittsburghers can expect to see colorful anthropomorphic suits adorning its sidewalks, as well as locals posing for pictures and photographs.

Gene J. Puskar / AP

The Pittsburgh Penguins' Stanley Cup victory parade and rally drew an estimated 650,000 people downtown. Not bad for a city that, officially, has only 305,000 residents.

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

Walking down Fourth Avenue in downtown Pittsburgh, it might feel like you’re being watched. And you are.

There are about a dozen pairs of eyes glaring down at the street. They’re made of gray and brown stone, some with intricate carved manes. Lions are a common sight on this stretch of downtown, and they have a very important job: to guard.

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

Downtown Pittsburgh’s newest structure is perhaps one of its most unique. The Aquaponics Project unveiled its portable unit Wednesday next to the Gateway T station.

Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership / YouTube

 

The Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership and other groups are trying to scare pedestrians straight off their cellphones.

The new "Look Alive" safety campaign features actors dressed as the Grim Reaper and zombies who will tell people to look up from their cellphones if they're seen walking and texting. A special computer program will also be used to flash safety messages to cellphone users who are on certain web browsers while they walk.

walkatop.com

A hike through Mt. Washington’s Emerald View Park next month aims to shed light on the resources available to those suffering from depression or mental illness.

It’s part of the WALKATOP charity hiking event on Sept. 11. Coordinators plan to raise funds for mental health programming and staffing at UPMC, as well as offer support, information and referrals to anyone seeking help.

Andrea Koerner

Know a fictional language? Here’s your chance to show off your skills.

Pittsburgh's Office of Public Art took to Craigslist and Facebook this week seeking translators proficient in Klingon, Elvish and Dothraki to translate a specialty art tour to coincide with the Wizard World conference visiting in November.

Director Renee Piechocki said the office is always looking to broaden its engagement with regional public art by offering an experience passionate fans will find exciting. It’s important to consider different perspectives, she said.

Port Authority of Allegheny County

 

A man convicted of beating a black man and pushing him onto subway tracks in Pittsburgh almost a year ago has been sentenced to three to six years in prison.

Twenty-two-year-old Ryan Kyle was sentenced Wednesday in Allegheny County. He pleaded guilty in February to aggravated assault, ethnic intimidation and robbery conspiracy as prosecutors dropped an attempted murder charge.

Guster / Facebook

It was love at first tweet.

At the request of the band, Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto joined 91.3 WYEP's Brian Siewiorek on Wednesday to announce the headlining act for this year's Three Rivers Arts Festival.

Guster will take the stage Friday, June 10. 

The band, which hails from Boston, Mass. requested an introduction by the mayor after Guster played a short acoustic set in front of dumpster on the North Side earlier this year.

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

Peggy Glatch spends all day on her feet. She’s constantly moving while cutting her customers' hair.

She’s worked as a hair stylist for more than 40 years, the last 15 at Izzazu Salon downtown.

The salon was recognized as the first Live Well Workplace by the Allegheny County Health Department. Workplace is the fourth installment in the county’s push for healthier lifestyles, Live Well Allegheny.

Eamonn O Muiri / Flickr

Pittsburgh’s Golden Triangle is on the rise as a great downtown, according to Livability.com. The website named the city as having one of the most livable urban cores. 

“If you’re on lists like this and if you are doing the kinds of things to get that kind of attention, you’ve created a great place for people to come and visit and invest and spend time and move their businesses or themselves to,” said Matt Carmichael, editor of Livability.com

William Penn Centennial Pays Tribute To Storied Past

Mar 8, 2016
Emily Stock / 90.5 WESA

Pittsburgh’s “Grande Dame,” the Omni William Penn Hotel, celebrates its 100th birthday this year. The downtown hotel’s rich history will be remembered through both public and VIP events this week. Bob Page, director of sales and marketing for the William Penn, previewed the events from the building’s lobby.

Sarah Kovash / 90.5 WESA

It’s not just Friday, it’s Steelers Friday.

The Courthouse Courtyard was a sea of black and gold Friday as enthusiastic Steelers fan gathered for a playoff rally. The team will take on the Cincinnati Bengals in a last-chance wild card bid at 8:15 p.m. Saturday.

Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald said he sensed the energy all over town.

“It’s not exactly Steeler weather, but tomorrow it’s going to be, when we come back with a victory,” he said. 

Mark / Flickr

 

Roughly 40,000 people are expected to make their way downtown this year for Pittsburgh’s annual New Year’s celebration.

Kevin McMahon, president and CEO of the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust, said the events offered at “First Night 2016” are going to be more diverse than ever.

“Our theme this year is ‘Around the World, Around the ‘Burgh’ and so we’re telling people that you can experience all kinds of art and culture from around the globe without ever leaving Pittsburgh,” McMahon said. “So that’s our big, new thing this year.”

David Brossard / Flickr

An effort launched by the Green Building Alliance in 2012 to lower the environmental impact of buildings in Downtown Pittsburgh and Oakland has been recognized by the International Downtown Association for revitalizing a business district.  

The 2030 District effort to cut energy consumption, water use and transportation emissions in half by 2030 is one of just four programs nationwide to receive the award this year.

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