Mt. Oliver's 'The Deck' up for award


Last updated 10/6/2021 at 9:14pm

Urban Land Institute Pittsburgh has announced finalists for Jury Awards in the 2021 Placemaking Awards For Excellence including The Deck in Mt. Oliver.

This signature program celebrates projects throughout the Pittsburgh region showcasing best practices in placemaking - a multi-faceted approach to the planning, design, and management of public spaces - and the development teams who bring them to life.

Presented by First National Bank of Pennsylvania, the program will honor McKnight Realty Partners with the Placemaker of the Year Award.

Jury Award winners represent noteworthy projects that have had a significant impact on the communities and neighborhoods where they are located. For additional information on the Jury Award Categories, visit, Finalists include:

• Jury Award

-Allegheny Overlook- The Allegheny Overlook has offered a new way for residents, workers, and visitors to experience Downtown Pittsburgh. – Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership

-The Deck – Mt. Oliver -During the pandemic, Mt. Oliver Borough made it a priority to invest in their outdoor public spaces, refreshing and rebranding as 'The Deck,' where residents and visitors can enjoy take out from local eateries and listen to live music in a social-distanced setting. - Mt. Oliver Borough

-Oakland Ave. Placemaking Pilot- The Oakland Avenue Pilot Project provided additional space for restaurant and public dining, recreation, and public engagement through art and entertainment. - Oakland Business Improvement District

“This year’s Jury Award Finalists represent the incredible quality of work being done across our region,” said Peter Quintanilla, Michael Baker International- Placemaking Chair. “Their innovations and ingenuity set a high bar for placemaking in Western PA and across the country.”

• Catalytic Place

-Centre Ave. YMCA Renovation- Historic Renovation of the Centre Avenue YMCA. - Action Housing

-Bakery Office Three + Court Refresh + Galley-Serves as a beacon and symbol of the City of Pittsburgh’s vibrant growth and reinvention as a hub for technology, innovation, and sustainability. – Walnut Capital, Strada

• Community Place

- Ohringer Arts Center- Historic renovation and conversion to housing. - Developer, Gregg Kander

-Homewood Community Engagement Center – Phase I & II- One of five aimed at building alliances within urban neighborhoods to collaboratively create stronger communities. -University of Pittsburgh, Strada

• Healthy Place

-Monarch Institute – Family Pathways Addition- Three-story building addition to connect a decades-old building to house a training and venue space for Family Pathways that promotes wellness with emphases on restoration, sustainability, and enhancement of relationships.- Etzek Engineer and Build, Pieper O’Brien Herr Architects

-2 Doughboy- This project bridged Desmone’s iconic Pittsburgh office space with an expanded modern workspace experience. The end result is Pittsburgh’s first WELL Certified Gold Building.- Chip Desmone, Desmone Architects

-Girty’s Woods Conservation Project- Girty’s Woods Conservation Project was a one year effort to permanently protect 155 acres of green space in Reserve Township, adjacent to Millvale and Shaler.- Allegheny Land Trust

• Transformative Place

-Round House at Hazlewood Green- Hazelwood Green is envisioned as a place where people thrive, new ideas are forged, and the land is regenerated from the effects of its industrial past.- RK Mellon Foundation, Sam Reiman and GBBN Architects

-225 Boulevard of the Allies- Total interior and exterior renovation of an existing office Building (formerly American Heart Association) into a modern Class A- Office Building adding to the character of the Blvd of the Allies. -Fourth River Development

-Pusadee’s Garden - The design of the new Pusdaee’s Garden Restaurant evolved from the owner’s desire to create a garden oasis within the dense urban fabric of the city. – mossArchitects.

• Visionary Place

-5th & Dinwiddie Development- This building is slated for retail, co-working spaces, and workforce development area to train neighborhood residents for clean energy jobs.- Bridging the Gap Development, Derrick Tillman

-The Heart of Main St. – Braddock- Braddock has set a course as a welcoming community anchored by transforming the main street of Braddock Avenue into a vibrant center for people to live, work, exchange, and grow.- TREK Development, Bill Gatti and Rothschild Doyno Collaborative

-UPMC Vision, and Rehabilitation Tower- As a new Pittsburgh landmark located on a prominent site along the Boulevard of the Allies, this state-of-the-art facility and landscape will position UPMC at the global forefront of rehabilitation and ophthalmic research and care. – Michael Chiapetta, UPMC

Due to Covid concerns, the in-person award celebration has been delayed until spring 2022. The ceremony is now scheduled for May 12 at The Highline, one of McKnight’s projects that truly exemplifies placemaking through development. It is just one example of why they have been selected as the 2021 honoree. The Highline at 333 East Carson Street features a one-acre public patio converted from the former rail switchyard and an elevated park-like space that extends to an overhang with gorgeous views of the Monongahela River and the City of Pittsburgh.


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