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City calls for members to join new Neighborhood Conservation group


March 20, 2018

The city is seeking applicants to participate in a working group to establish the framework for the Neighborhood Conservation District (NCD) zoning overlay.

This is a planning tool that could be used in different neighborhoods. This process is to develop the tool that will be available for neighborhoods, not to identify the specific neighborhoods where it could be applied as it is intended that neighborhoods will determine potential locations through neighborhood plans or other planning efforts.

The City of Pittsburgh’s Cultural Heritage Plan called for study to determine the feasibility of adding Conservation Overlay Districts as part of the Zoning Code. Subsequently, City Council passed legislation supporting the possible development of conservation districts and backs the adoption of legislation that will allow for the establishment of these districts.

This lead to work initiated by the Department of City Planning with Winter & Company studying the application of Conservation Districts. The NCD Working Group will take that work and define how neighborhood conservation districts can be applied in Pittsburgh and develop guidelines that will delineate eligibility for future NCD overlay candidates.

Neighborhood Conservation Districts are a zoning overlay tool intended to protect a neighborhood’s character. This overlay will consider the relationship between place and architecture and community.

Neighborhood Conservation Districts will be used to conserve and enhance significant areas within a community beyond what is specified in the existing zoning code in Pittsburgh.

The Department of City Planning will work with the NCD working group to establish the structure of the Neighborhood Conservation Districts definition citywide and the Guidelines that will govern this overlay. The NCD policy requires a broad consensus among experts in urban design, architecture, planning and culture with a strong knowledge of the City’s neighborhoods.

Applicants for the NCD working group should have architectural experience and expertise discipline with a strong and diverse urban design aesthetics and experience. The working group also welcomes applicants with other backgrounds like urban sociology, community development, public art, cultural and architectural history. The applicants should be willing to dedicate a minimum of four hours a month for a period of six months.

To learn more about NCD’s and to apply to the NCD Working group visit the website at:


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