South Pittsburgh Reporter - Serving South Pittsburgh Since 1939

By Tom Smith
South Pittsburgh Reporter Editor 

Parklet is targeted by vandals for three years

 

September 11, 2018

"The Corner," a parklet in Mt. Oliver City, has been marred by vandalism since work first began on the former vacant lot nearly three years ago.

Vandalism continues to plague "The Corner," a small parklet at the intersection of Mountain and Fisher in Mt. Oliver City. The latest damaged occurred sometime between Sunday, Sept. 2 after 4 p.m. and Monday, Sept. 3 at noon.

"The Corner," once a vacant lot, now features landscaped grounds, corn-hole boards, chess/checker tables and a mini library. Lighthouse Cathedral also uses the space for an informational sign.

"This spot has enhanced the neighborhood," said Suzanne Photos. "It is no longer a parking lot for vehicles and/or heavy equipment. Grass and plants make it eye catching and numerous people, including those that travel the busy thoroughfare to and from the city and suburbs, note it truly marks a positive change to the area."

However, since work began approximately three years ago and improvements made, individuals have negatively plagued the project. Vandals have removed the "no parking/towing" signs, tossing them on near-by properties; obscene graffiti was painted on the corn-hole boards and tables; the decorative boulders were tagged with graffiti; the stone stools, which are part of the game tables and had been anchored by bolts and pins, were removed; and, raw poultry was placed on the chess/checker tables.

The mini library has also taken a beating with the windows broken three times; the support post holding the library was damaged; and, the books were removed, ripped apart and tossed on the ground and street repeatedly.

Most recently the letters attached vertically to the edge of the sign which said "The Corner," were broken off and thrown in the street, on the sidewalk and surrounding grounds. In the same incident, the "No Parking" sign on the Mountain Street side of the parklet was broken off and again thrown onto private property.

"These letters were hand cut and costly . . . it looked like someone took a bat and destroyed them," Ms. Photos said.

The posting of surveillance cameras and signs has not deterred the vandals. Zone 3 police continue to investigate the vandalism. Anyone with any information should call Officer Christine Luffey at 412-488-8425.

The parklet is on City of Pittsburgh property and was constructed using time, funding and community spirit from the City of Pittsburgh, Neighborhood Allies, PA American Water Company, Hilltop Alliance and the Mt. Oliver City/St. Clair Community.

Ms. Photos said a substantial amount of money has been expended so far on the project and the community will continue to correct any wrongdoing.

 

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