South Pittsburgh Reporter - Serving South Pittsburgh Since 1939

By Al Lowe
Contributing Writer 

MWCDC changes by-laws to have board elect officers in the future


Thursday night, June 16, was one of the rare times the monthly Mount Washington Community Development Corporation community forum meeting drew a crowd.

Nearly 100 persons showed up to vote on whether to approve by-law revisions and to stay and hear updates on the organization's progress.

The biggest by-law change involved having the board of directors electing their officers instead of the members doing it; in October members may vote only to retain or add new officers to the board.

There were 72 votes in favor of the by-law changes and 24 opposed. The meeting started at 7 p.m., members had until 8 p.m. to vote.

While they waited for results members heard about Community Day at Grandview Park, that will be held from noon to 4 p.m. June 25, and will be sponsored by Friends of Grandview Park. The event will feature puppets, a moon bounce, arts and crafts, local vendors, food and music provided by a group called "The Neighbors."

A "roving art cart" will be available at the Bailey Avenue entrance of the park from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on the previous day, Friday, June 24.

Vickie Pisowicz announced she is opening the Grandview Bakery at 225 Shiloh Street by September or October. MWCDC staffers said she had read in the MWCDC newsletter, The Viewpoint, residents in the neighborhood wanted a new bakery. She was formerly associated with Prantl's Bakery in Shadyside.

Executive Director Chris Beichner said the staff has been distributing surveys to help in formulating a strategic plan. The results will be discussed at a staff and board retreat in July and shared with attendees at a future community forum meeting.

The MWCDC recently installed 90 hanging baskets along Grandview Avenue and in the business community, Mr. Beichner said.

A new project involves installing banners and security cameras along the neighborhood's major arteries. The MWCDC got permission from the city's art commission and talked to residents living near where the installations are planned.

The developer for One Grandview Avenue is still seeking funding for its plans to build a complex with hotel rooms, condos, two restaurants and a fitness center, Mr. Beichner said. The site has been "prepped" and the former Edge restaurant has been demolished.

Park Development and Conservation Director Ilyssa Manspeizer said a half dozen young adults have been helping to prepare a trail from behind Skookum Field in Duquesne Heights leading to the "Point of View" statue along Grandview Avenue.

Their work is part of a "green jobs initiative" paid for by the Pittsburgh Partnership for Neighborhood Development, the Birmingham Foundation, the City of Pittsburgh and PNC Charitable Trusts. Additional donations can be made to help fund the work; Ms. Manspeizer suggested "Emerald View Park" be put on the subject line of checks made out to MWCDC.

Organizations responsible for implementing various parts of the project include One Vision for Life, A. Philip Randolph Institute, Student Conservation Association, G-Tech and the MWCDC.

Ms. Manspeizer also mentioned that a company annually responsible for removing evasive plants from Emerald View Park and replacing them with low growing shrubs only spent half the time it estimated it needed to finish the work this year. "This shows that what we are doing is working," she said.

Mr. Beichner said the next issue of The Viewpoint will describe which qualifications are needed for new board members. The deadline for applying is by 4 p.m. on July 29. The election is scheduled for October's community forum meeting.

The MWCDC will be seeking advice from a consultant regarding obtaining more grants and donations.

A new graphic design business will be located near Galasso Realty on Southern Avenue.

According to Zone 3 crime statistics the Mount in May had: nine burglaries, 15 acts of criminal mischief, four DUIs, one rape, seven simple assaults, 15 thefts from autos, 13 thefts from persons, and seven drug arrests.


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