Development & Transportation

We cover how people move about the region, as well as trends in housing and commercial development.

Eviction Ban Nears An End With Renter Aid Still In Pipeline

18 hours ago
Kiley Koscinski / 90.5 WESA

Federal emergency aid for renters in Pennsylvania hit hard financially during the pandemic is still in the pipeline as Gov. Tom Wolf's ban on foreclosures and evictions nears an expiration.

Antunovich Associates

The historic Produce Terminal in Pittsburgh’s Strip District is expected to be ready for new tenants this fall. The first phase of renovations was completed last week.

Courtesy of Gensler + HDR in association with luis vidal + architects

Air travel looks different now, and not just because traffic has declined precipitously. Travelers at Pittsburgh International Airport, for instance, must wear face coverings and practice distancing, and staff have ramped up cleaning practices, all to combat spread of the coronavirus.

Margaret J. Krauss / 90.5 WESA

Pittsburgh City Council voted against a study that could have changed how a new pot of money is spent on affordable housing. Tuesday’s vote is the latest chapter in a years-long fight over the redevelopment of the former Penn Plaza Apartments in East Liberty.

Matt Slocum / AP

The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission voted Tuesday to lay off 500 fare collectors and other toll workers and make the entire interstate network a cashless system.

Ryan Loew / 90.5 WESA

The Port Authority of Allegheny County on Friday confirmed that it will receive nearly $100 million in federal funding for its Bus Rapid Transit project.

Courtesy of Gensler

The Pittsburgh Penguins will advance their plans for a 26-story office tower on the former site of the Civic Arena in the Lower Hill. The project won preliminary approval from the board of the Urban Redevelopment Authority on Thursday, a week after they moved to delay the vote, citing community concerns and documents received at the last minute.

Sarah Kovash / 90.5 WESA

With the warming weather and the city of Pittsburgh squarely in the yellow phase of Gov. Tom Wolf's reopening plan, more people are leaving their houses. A City of Pittsburgh task force has proposed a number of ways that streets and transit could be modified to balance the demands of physical distancing with an increase in economic activity.

Keith Srakocic / AP

The Pittsburgh Penguins announced today they will stop development in the Lower Hill on the former Civic Arena site. The decision came shortly after the Urban Redevelopment Authority delayed a vote on the first project planned for the 28-acre site, an office tower for First National Bank.

Pennsylvania Extends Moratorium On Evictions, Foreclosures

May 7, 2020
Sarah Kovash / 90.5 WESA

Gov. Tom Wolf on Thursday extended a moratorium on foreclosures and evictions by another two months, saying residents should not have to worry about losing their homes during the pandemic.

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

With much of the United States shut down in response to coronavirus, it’s hard to shake the feeling of living in a post-apocalyptic movie set: empty streets, empty buses, empty playgrounds wrapped with caution tape. Now, weeks into the effects of the pandemic, states have begun to lift restrictions to allow non-essential businesses to open.

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

Editor’s Note: On Tuesday, April 28, after this story was published, the state Supreme Court amended its previous stay on court actions and extended the prohibition on evictions and foreclosures until Monday, May 11.

In the early weeks of Pennsylvania’s response to the coronavirus, the state Supreme Court put a moratorium on evictions and foreclosures. That protection runs out on Friday. 

Gov. Tom Wolf / Flickr

 


On today's program: The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation faces construction setbacks due to pandemic; one expert imagines what it will mean to reopen the state; local restaurants face uncertain futures; and poets maintain community during difficult times. 

Margaret J. Krauss / 90.5 WESA

2020 was shaping up to be a bumper year for home sales in the Pittsburgh region before real estate agents were forced into a holding pattern by the coronavirus pandemic; real estate did not make Gov. Tom Wolf’s original or updated list of life-sustaining businesses.

Buccini / Pollin Group

Since the response to the coronavirus put most of Pennsylvania’s economy on lockdown last month, Pittsburgh’s Urban Redevelopment Authority has provided more than $3 million in emergency loans to support small businesses.

Ryan Loew / 90.5 WESA

In the space of just a few weeks the response to the coronavirus has forced people throughout western Pennsylvania and the world to overhaul their daily lives. The pandemic presents a dual challenge for transit agencies; they must continue to connect people to work, grocery stores and health care but with dramatically decreased revenue as ridership plunges.

Pittsburgh Department of Mobility and Infrastructure

A new report finds that a planned transit connection between Pittsburgh’s Hazelwood and Oakland neighborhoods would not meet the travel needs of existing residents nor future demand expected from continued redevelopment at the 178-acre Hazelwood Green site. The analysis of the city’s Mon-Oakland Connector project was commissioned by nonprofit advocacy group Pittsburghers for Public Transit, or PPT.

Archives & Special Collections / University of Pittsburgh Library System


Before highways and railroads crisscrossed the commonwealth, a series of linked waterways and inclined planes brought people and goods across the state. The Pennsylvania Canal was a significant engineering achievement when it was constructed in 1826.

Gensler + HDR in association with luis vidal + architects / Allegheny County Airport Authority

 


On today's program: Protecting people from the outbreak could have dire consequences for those sheltering in place with an abuser; and PIT will wait for a less volatile stock market to break ground on its $1.1 billion terminal project.

Heather McClain / 90.5 WESA

Pittsburgh’s Urban Redevelopment Authority and its board on Thursday passed measures to support people and businesses suffering financially because of the coronavirus. A new program that aims to keep people in their homes was among the approvals.

Margaret J. Krauss / 90.5 WESA

Transit agencies across the country are scrambling to keep up with the effects of coronavirus: MTA in New York City says it needs $4 billion from the federal government, operators in Detroit, Mich. held a walkout because of exposure concerns. Port Authority of Allegheny County is seeing rising costs, a drop in ridership, and worried employees.

Liz Reid / 90.5 WESA

Port Authority of Allegheny County will now disinfect its vehicles every 72 hours, an increase from its regular monthly schedule. Agency officials say it is a preventative measure to limit the reach of the coronavirus. So far, there are no confirmed cases in Allegheny County. 

Matt Slocum / AP

As of Monday, drivers in Pennsylvania who are picked up by cameras traveling more than 11 mph over the speed limit in a marked highway work zone will get a written warning for a first offense and fines for subsequent violations.

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

The City of Pittsburgh wants to change a rule that requires rowhouses to provide off-street parking spaces. Legislation proposed by Mayor Bill Peduto’s office would drop the requirement from one spot to zero.

Gov. Tom Wolf / Flickr

Lack of access to childcare has a tremendous impact on the Pennsylvania economy, according to a new report from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation. More than half of the 330 parents surveyed for the research said they’ve missed work because of a childcare problem. Others say they’ve delayed education or training, or left a job in order to care for a child.

Ted S. Warren / AP

Under federal law, Pennsylvanians have until October 1st to get updated IDs, or they’ll no longer be able to use their state identification to board planes or enter federal facilities and nuclear plants.

Pennsylvania officials say the state lags behind its neighbors when it comes to attracting new businesses and creating jobs. In a budget hearing Wednesday, lawmakers sought assurances that investments made by the Department of Community and Economic Development will pay off.

Pennsylvania’s Department of Transportation oversees everything from road and bridge maintenance to mass transit. 

Brittany Reilly / Preservation Pittsburgh

Gracing Oakland with a spectacle of high arches, ornate pillars, and intricate stonework along its polished granite façade, the old Croatian Fraternal Union building at 3441 Forbes Avenue is one of two Pittsburgh sites on Preservation Pennsylvania’s 2020 At Risk list of endangered historic places.

Heather McClain / 90.5 WESA

Pittsburgh City Councilor Ricky Burgess says the city must take bold action to solve its affordable housing crisis. In 2016, a task force estimated a need for 20,000 units, which led to the creation of the Housing Opportunity Fund. 

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