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Old 01-19-2016, 02:26 PM
 
Location: Northeast states
10,332 posts, read 7,234,812 times
Reputation: 2704

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Quote:
Originally Posted by jFug View Post
I'll talk about Erie.


Erie is a city of around 100,000 in NWPA.


Some of the city's main employers include GE Transportation, UPMC Hamot, Erie Insurance, St. Vincent Health System, as well as the county, city and state governments.


Erie includes attractions such as Presque Isle State Park, the Erie Art Museum, the maritime museum, the Erie Playhouse, Warner Theatre, the Millcreek Mall, Waldameer Park, the Bayfront Convention Center, etc.


Erie's bayfront and downtown have seen major revitalizations and continue to be developed.


The city, unfortunately is mildly, economically depressed. Jobs are being cut and the population I declining, although the county's population has remained the same.


Erie, for a city of it's size, is pretty diverse. A lot of refugees call Erie home.


While Erie is not officially separated into neighborhoods, we do have "de facto" neighborhoods including Downtown, the bayfront, Frontier, Little Italy, Glenwood Hills, the Lower East Side, the Upper East Side, etc.


While crime in city is on the rise, it is mostly contained to a small area.


And while Erie is no Miami Beach, it does see a lot of tourism from May-September. A lot of these tourists are from PA, WV, OH or NY. But I've seen people from overseas.


The Erie metro area (which is home to 280,000 people) is served by several higher education facilities including Gannon Univ., Mercyhurst Univ., Penn State Behrend, Edinboro Univ., and LECOM.


Erie is served by Erie International Airport (ERI) located west of the city.

I see alot on PA forums cities outside of Philly and Pittsburgh are economically depressed compare to NYC metro area like White Plains, Jersey City is more economic stable or Boston area like Lynn and Cambridge are stable.
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Old 01-19-2016, 07:16 PM
 
Location: Williamsport PA
108 posts, read 186,710 times
Reputation: 100
I have explored many small cities and towns since I live in Williamsport PA and it is a long drive to get to Pittsburgh or Philadelphia. There is a benefit in being remote from a big city because you are isolated from tourists. Just look at Jim Thorpe PA. That city is crawling with tourists from NYC and Philadelphia. Jim Thorpe PA is certainly the most picturesque of all the towns I've explored.

I have mostly concentrated on the eastern part of the state. I plan to explore the Scranton / Wilkes-Barre area more thoroughly this year when the weather improves. But I have visited most of the towns in the Poconos. Stroudsburg and Honesdale are fair sized cities but Hawly, Delaware Water Gap, and Milford are little more than villages. I like the Poconos because there are still many resorts and more upscale restaurants and establishments scattered around the region.

Most small cities survive on higher education (at least one college or university), health care (at least one major regional hospital), and government. A town without a college or a hospital (like Hawly) will really be hurting. East Stroudsburg is almost completely taken up by the East Stroudsburg University.

There are a lot of state parks with plenty of hiking trails, vista views, waterfalls, and bike trails. Hiking often involves climbing a mountain which can be exhausting, but I've learned where some of the easier trails are located.

Delaware Water Gap and Eagles Mere are atypical since they are really small villages with wealthy residents who support surprisingly upscale restaurants and amenities. Delaware Water Gap has Deer Head Inn, the oldest continuously running jazz club in the country, and a very fancy restaurant, Antelao Restaurant, plus some other establishments. Eagles Mere has a lake and a golf course and many fine Victorian summer homes.
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Old 01-20-2016, 04:35 AM
 
Location: Pittsburgh
3,103 posts, read 2,610,947 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SteelCityRising View Post
I think it's due to "changing preferences" (or so they say) in the housing market. So many people look at the little old houses with two or three bedrooms and one bathroom in most of our state's cities and say "too small", so they instead build huge McMansions in places like Cranberry Township (Pittsburgh), Summit Township (Erie), Dallas Township (Wilkes-Barre), South Abington Township (Scranton), and even Richland Township (Johnstown) and Hempfield Township (Greensburg). It's hard for older city cores to compete with the suburbs for new residential growth in our Commonwealth.
Agreed. 6 years ago Pittsburgh was an entirely different place. There wasn't a big difference between rich and poor. Revitalization has changed the dynamics of the region. Decent neighborhoods are overpriced so residents decide not to spend money on old homes and COL. They move to where they can get more bang for their buck and be safe. The growth can be seen in Southpointe and Cranberry. In fact, the growth is spreading beyond Cranberry because that town is too expensive.

Pennsylvania is becoming a lot like Ohio (natives will never admit it). Like Ohio, satellite cities are booming while the big city cores are in decay.
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Old 01-20-2016, 07:11 AM
 
Location: McKeesport
4,536 posts, read 7,162,270 times
Reputation: 3405
Quote:
Originally Posted by bluecarebear View Post
Agreed. 6 years ago Pittsburgh was an entirely different place. There wasn't a big difference between rich and poor. Revitalization has changed the dynamics of the region. Decent neighborhoods are overpriced so residents decide not to spend money on old homes and COL. They move to where they can get more bang for their buck and be safe. The growth can be seen in Southpointe and Cranberry. In fact, the growth is spreading beyond Cranberry because that town is too expensive.

Pennsylvania is becoming a lot like Ohio (natives will never admit it). Like Ohio, satellite cities are booming while the big city cores are in decay.
You're blaming revitalization for causing suburban sprawl?

Last edited by PreservationPioneer; 01-20-2016 at 07:31 AM..
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Old 01-20-2016, 08:16 AM
 
Location: McKeesport
4,536 posts, read 7,162,270 times
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I'll talk about McKeesport and McKees Rocks, two of PA's smaller cities (McKees Rocks is technically a borough, but a small city otherwise). Both are located in Allegheny County, close to Pittsburgh. McKees Rocks is about ten minutes from downtown Pittsburgh, and McKeesport is about half an hour from the city. I lived in Stowe Township (suburb of McKees Rocks) in 2009-2013, and have lived in McKeesport since 2013.

McKeesport

McKeesport is one of the older river cities in Allegheny County, located at the confluence of the Monongahela and Youghiogheny Rivers. It was laid out in 1795 and settled as a village in the early frontier days. Its original industries were coal and river boat trade, and later iron and steel. It is located in an area referred to as the Mon Valley, along the Monongahela River, where there are many 19th century industrial communities and villages. These towns often relied on the booming steel industry, which declined in the 1970s and 1980s. Many of the towns have held on in some fashion, while others, like McKeesport, have been devastated.

McKeesport is the largest city in the Mon Valley region, the second largest city in the county (after Pittsburgh), and I believe the 20th largest city in Pennsylvania. Its current population is 19-20,000. The population of McKeesport peaked at about 55,000 in 1940. It was once the 10th largest city in the state.

In spite of being in the sphere of greater Pittsburgh, McKeesport is an independent city in its own right, and home to several of its own amenities and institutions. Located in the city of McKeesport are UPMC McKeesport Hospital, Carnegie Library of McKeesport, the campus of Penn State Greater Allegheny, McKeesport Little Theater, Renzie Park and Rose Garden, Heritage Center, McKeesport Symphony, the Great Allegheny Passage River Trail, the McKeesport Marina, several human services organizations, including Mon Yough and Auberle, and several grocery stores and restaurants.

While much of the core of the city is depressed, and was devastated by loss of industry and suburban sprawl, there are still some beautiful, historic urban neighborhoods, including the Library District and Myer Park, and the languishing bones of a downtown business district.

While McKeesport has the reputation of being a high crime area, that will depend on what neighborhood you are in, as the city covers a wide area. The numerous distinct neighborhoods in the city are often divided by mountains and rivers and hills, as some were originally separate boroughs, later annexed to McKeesport. I really love my neighborhood. My neighbors are fantastic, and I haven't had any issues since moving to the city.

Pros of living in McKeesport:
-Easy access to large city amenities, jobs, and other stuff in Pittsburgh.
-Having everything I need in McKeesport itself, and not needing to go to a larger city most of the time.
-Not much traffic in McKeesport
-Because it's a small city, there is a more relaxed, easygoing way of life down here than in a bigger city.
-If I wanted to, I could find a job in McKeesport and not have to commute to the city, as there are many employers in the healthcare and human services field here.
-Very affordable housing.
-I love sitting in the riverfront parks and walking the trails.

Cons of living in McKeesport:
-lack of efforts to revitalize the downtown business district
-backwards way of thinking among locals ("tear it all down and start over!")
-the people who live here are not really fans of urban living or historic buildings, as I am. Most of the locals seem to dream about living in a split-level in Liberty or White Oak, where here I am dreaming about restoring the dilapidated Victorian neighborhoods and a future downtown coffee shop!
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Old 01-20-2016, 08:20 AM
 
Location: The Flagship City
2,395 posts, read 2,862,640 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jFug View Post
Erie's bayfront and downtown have seen major revitalizations and continue to be developed.

The city, unfortunately is mildly, economically depressed. Jobs are being cut and the population I declining, although the county's population has remained the same.
This about sums it up and I like to say that Erie has potential and the Bayfront and downtown revitalization are a key part of the equation. It is amazing to me how much has been built in the Erie area while letting the city decay for so many years. The county has been relatively stable and several areas outside of the city have grown exponentially over the past few decades. It is nice to finally see some developments downtown and the indoor farmer's market that is being built in the former Erie Metro Transit Authority building is a very interesting project.
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Old 01-20-2016, 08:25 AM
 
Location: Pittsburgh
3,103 posts, read 2,610,947 times
Reputation: 2765
Quote:
Originally Posted by PreservationPioneer View Post
You're blaming revitalization for causing suburban sprawl?
It is part of the reason for the growth in the outer communities. The developers turn these city neighborhoods into trendy and high end places to live. Meanwhile, the poorer neighborhoods continue to decline. The middle class is being pushed out. My relocated friends have compared what they can get and what lifestyle they would lead in the city vs the burbs. They can enjoy a high quality of living without the problems of the city at a lower cost outside of the city, and in more instances, outside of the county. Most only come to the city for work or those that have found jobs in the burbs only visit a couple times a year.
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Old 01-20-2016, 08:42 AM
 
Location: McKeesport
4,536 posts, read 7,162,270 times
Reputation: 3405
McKees Rocks

McKees Rocks is another historic river town located on the outside edge of the western city limit of Pittsburgh. It is less than ten minutes from downtown Pittsburgh, and offers easy access to amenities and jobs in the city as well as suburban Robinson Township.

McKees Rocks is located adjacent to the Ohio River, and it was built up mostly in the 1880s and 1890s around the railroad industry. The population of the borough peaked at under 20,000 people in the mid-20th century, and is now about a third of that. Many people who talk about McKees Rocks also consider adjacent Stowe Township, which is an older streetcar suburb on the same street grid as McKees Rocks.

McKees Rocks, while being adjacent to the city, still contains some of its own amenities. These include Focus on Renewal (local nonprofit), the McKees Rocks Plaza shopping center, a grocery store, Father Ryan Arts Center, several beautiful ethnic churches, Eat 'n Park, and the historic Roxian Theater, which will soon be a mid-sized concert venue.

McKees Rocks has very affordable historic housing, mostly dating from the 1890s-1920s. The area has a reputation for having high crime. I always felt comfortable living there, however. The current state of McKees Rocks is depressed, with much vacant housing, long-term population decline, and poorly-maintained rental housing. Many of the poor have been pushed out of the city into the depressed outer ring suburbs, like McKees Rocks and Mt. Oliver. This has put a strain on the borough to maintain services without a strong tax base.

McKees Rocks, like McKeesport, is considered an unfashionable place to live, due in part because of perceptions of crime and the poor reputations of the local school districts, but also because of the (unsustainable) trends toward newer housing, suburban sprawl lifestyles, and indifference to historic neighborhoods. However, with affordable historic homes available, and decent access to the larger city, opportunities await for the thrifty urbanist or historic preservationist (me!).
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Old 01-20-2016, 10:34 AM
 
Location: Northeast states
10,332 posts, read 7,234,812 times
Reputation: 2704
Quote:
Originally Posted by PreservationPioneer View Post
McKees Rocks

McKees Rocks is another historic river town located on the outside edge of the western city limit of Pittsburgh. It is less than ten minutes from downtown Pittsburgh, and offers easy access to amenities and jobs in the city as well as suburban Robinson Township.

McKees Rocks is located adjacent to the Ohio River, and it was built up mostly in the 1880s and 1890s around the railroad industry. The population of the borough peaked at under 20,000 people in the mid-20th century, and is now about a third of that. Many people who talk about McKees Rocks also consider adjacent Stowe Township, which is an older streetcar suburb on the same street grid as McKees Rocks.

McKees Rocks, while being adjacent to the city, still contains some of its own amenities. These include Focus on Renewal (local nonprofit), the McKees Rocks Plaza shopping center, a grocery store, Father Ryan Arts Center, several beautiful ethnic churches, Eat 'n Park, and the historic Roxian Theater, which will soon be a mid-sized concert venue.

McKees Rocks has very affordable historic housing, mostly dating from the 1890s-1920s. The area has a reputation for having high crime. I always felt comfortable living there, however. The current state of McKees Rocks is depressed, with much vacant housing, long-term population decline, and poorly-maintained rental housing. Many of the poor have been pushed out of the city into the depressed outer ring suburbs, like McKees Rocks and Mt. Oliver. This has put a strain on the borough to maintain services without a strong tax base.

McKees Rocks, like McKeesport, is considered an unfashionable place to live, due in part because of perceptions of crime and the poor reputations of the local school districts, but also because of the (unsustainable) trends toward newer housing, suburban sprawl lifestyles, and indifference to historic neighborhoods. However, with affordable historic homes available, and decent access to the larger city, opportunities await for the thrifty urbanist or historic preservationist (me!).

Sound similar to Waterbury CT but it is much bigger city. I looked on the map of the area Western PA look like Western Ohio Youngstown area.
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Old 01-20-2016, 02:05 PM
 
659 posts, read 980,358 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BPt111 View Post
look like Western Ohio Youngstown area.
what
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