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Identity & Community

A Snapshot of the Pittsburgh Region at Year's End

Pittsburgh is doing well, but has room to improve.

That's the take away from a recent document by Pittsburgh Today. The regional indicator project that compares the city to 14 other benchmark cities.

Pittsburgh Today Director Dough Heuck said the city is strong in areas like the arts, employment, housing and tourism. But he said it has a ways to go when it comes to health. According to Heuck, more people are smoking now: 23 percent compared to 17 percent in 2010. He also said the region is more obese, with more than 27 percent considered obese according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 

Heuck also said Pittsburgh needs to find a way to increase its diversity. 

"We're slow to change in that regard," he said. "We're the whitest of all the benchmark regions — almost 87 percent white, with just over 3 percent of our residents being foreign born."

Those benchmarks include:

  • Baltimore
  • Boston
  • Charlotte
  • Cincinnati
  • Cleveland
  • Denver
  • Detroit
  • Indianapolis
  • Kansas City
  • Milwaukee
  • Minneapolis
  • Philadelphia
  • Pittsburgh
  • Richmond
  • St. Louis

Looking ahead, Heuck believes the region is poised to put more distance between our region and other regions.
"I think we're well situated," Heuck said.

More information on regional indicators can be found at