Shadyside

The City of Pittsburgh, through the Urban Redevelopment Authority, approved plans Thursday to purchase the Alfred E. Hunt Armory in Shadyside from the state.

The 102-year-old historic landmark will be purchased by the URA without having to go through a bidding process, according to Pittsburgh City Councilman Dan Gilman.

“That allows us to have better local control over the future redevelopment plans, whereas the state just requires selling to the highest bidder,” he said.

But Gilman said the city doesn’t want to own the property for long.

Local business owners have high hopes heading into Small Business Saturday.

Across Pittsburgh, hundreds of locally owned restaurants and retailers are offering specials, events and giveaways the day after Black Friday to drive up sales as part of a movement launched by American Express in 2010 to get holiday shoppers out of the malls and into the mom and pop shops.

Audrey Guskey, an associate professor of marketing at Duquesne University, said the movement has gotten a lot of attention so far this year.

Twenty-six theater shows might seem like a day on Broadway, but the first Pittsburgh Fringe Festival is putting on these shows for two weekends.

The Pittsburgh Fringe Festival is part of an international project that started in Edinburgh Scotland, which celebrates the performing arts by putting on shows, workshops and forums.

Pittsburgh leaders are following up on the success of two miniature water parks, known as "spray parks," by building more of the facilities to open in three city neighborhoods this summer.

After the Act 47 state financial oversight team found that the city was spending too much money on swimming pools in 2004, Pittsburgh was forced to close 13 pools. One of those reopened a few years later thanks to a nonprofit organization, but the others remained unused for years.

A man killed in a Pittsburgh apartment fire was set to be evicted and may have started the blaze by disconnecting the gas line to his stove.

Witnesses reported hearing an explosion before just after 7 a.m. in the nine-story, 170-unit Amberson apartment complex in the city's Shadyside section.

The Allegheny County medical examiner has identified the dead man as 60-year-old Mark A. Williams. An autopsy shows he died of external burns and from inhaling superheated air.