South Pittsburgh Reporter - Serving South Pittsburgh Since 1939

 
 

By Margaret L Smykla
Contributing Writer 

EDS is working across municipal borders to improve communities along Brownsville Road and Route 51

 


The May 8 general membership meeting of Carrick Community Council (CCC) featured an update on the only city-county partnership in Allegheny County: Economic Development South (EDS).

The EDS is the nonprofit, community development corporation for Baldwin Borough, Brentwood, Whitehall, Carrick, Overbrook and Mount Oliver Borough in light of their shared interests along the Brownsville Rd. and Route 51 corridors.

These neighborhoods were chosen based on EDS’s focus on commercial corridors that serve as our “downtowns” and intersect all EDS communities.

While the primary focus will be Brownsville Rd. and Route 51, there will be a secondary focus of Streets Run Rd ., Churchview Ave ., and Provost Rd.

The EDS area encompasses 60,000 residents and 550 businesses.

“How do we keep people here, and make an attractive destination for businesses?” executive director Greg Jones said of the organization’s main thrust.

He was joined in his presentation by Stephanie Miller, projects and initiatives manager of EDS.

About $185,000 will be invested in projects and initiatives that will support the activities underway along the Brownsville Rd. corridor in Carrick and Brentwood.

More than $100,000 is currently being invested in projects and initiatives that will support activities underway along the Route 51 corridor in Baldwin, Brentwood, Whitehall, Carrick, and Overbrook.

Mr. Jones said EDS is trying to address five problems in each neighborhood: real estate development; marketing; small business services; environmental; and transportation and transit.

A discussion of numerous concurrent activities underway along the Brownsville Rd. and Route 51 corridors followed.

They include:

A Brownsville Rd. commercial node and implementation study is expected to be completed in June. Its aim is to develop a more unified, efficient, and effective strategy for redevelopment and revitalization of the Brownsville Rd. corridor regardless of boundaries in Carrick and Overbrook.

The plan will identify specific streetscape and public safety improvements, and long-term program and initiatives to retain existing businesses and attract new ones to the key commercial corridor.

EDS, in partnership with the CCC, Colteryahn Dairy, and the Design Center of Pittsburgh, will work to identify development concepts for a proposed dairy district around the business district that flanks the Colteryahn Dairy location.

Ideas include a farmers market, and a dairy-themed retail center, such as with an ice cream shop and a chocolate shop.

The dairy is the oldest and last remaining dairy in the city of Pittsburgh.

The EDS is also working with a development team to redevelop the 90-year-old, vacant Overbrook Middle School on Route 51 as a senior campus development.

It will include the rehab of the existing building as an assisted living facility, and the construction of about 65 new independent-living senior units on the ball fields adjacent to the school building. The project will also include transit-oriented development.

Total investment after development is projected between $25 and $30 million.

“We want to implement the big projects that individual communities could not do in the past,” Mr. Jones said.

Next, in announcements, Josiah Gilliam of Meals on Wheels, said the organization could use more volunteers.

The local Meals on Wheels, which operates out of Trinity Lutheran Church on Brownsville Rd ., delivers 85 meals a day.

For more information on volunteering or to receive meals, visit: http://www.lsswpa.org, or call Mr. Gilliam at 412-881-0990.

Volunteers are also needed for Carrick’s four community gardens. Students interested in volunteering at the gardens to meet a community service school requirement are also welcome.

Contact Mike Woshner of the CCC Beautification Committee at http://www.carrickpa.com for more information.

Mr. Rudiak encouraged participation in the Envelope of LIFE program in which residents list their medical histories and medications on a form which they then attach to their refrigerators with a magnet or tape for quick reference by EMS in an emergency.

To request an Envelope of LIFE, call Pittsburgh EMS at 412-622-6930.

Next, Carol Anthony, who conducts the Carrick/Overbrook block watch, announced the second annual “Communities Against Crime” will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. on July 30 in the area between Churchview and Owendale avenues in the 2600-2900 blocks of Brownsville Rd.

The gathering is designed to show community support in the face of drug dealing and other crimes that impact the neighborhood’s quality of life.

Residents are welcome to set up a table and sell their crafts and other wares, or else hand out information.

National Night Out will be held on Aug. 6. It is designed to heighten crime and drug prevention awareness; generate support for local anti-crime programs; and strength neighborhood spirit and police-community partnerships.

In the evening’s last announcement, instead of merging the Carrick and Knoxville branches of Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, there is support among library personnel for keeping the two libraries while making them more user-friendly.

After three years of discussion on a merger, a suitable location still cannot be found.

The library board will have the final say.

 

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