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Old 08-02-2011, 08:40 PM
 
Location: Pittsburgh area
9,879 posts, read 9,251,366 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ditchdigger View Post
I'll add too, that while it might not be "the same as a market house building", it's heritage is as a marketplace. It's just that the transactions were historically more of a wholesale nature than retail.
Its heritage as a marketplace doesn't interest me much. A true market house building is far more interesting architecturally. The historical value of this doesn't even grab me at all. Indeed I'm with h_curtis (assuming he's not being facetious, which is always a possibility ) on the idea that if you were to preserve a building with historical value, you might as well preserve the arena. That one is more interesting to me.
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Old 08-02-2011, 08:46 PM
 
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There are huge differences between the Produce Terminal and the Arena. With minor modifications, the Produce Terminal will fit right into the street grid in that area. The Produce Terminal is also easily convertable to all sorts of uses, because it is basically just a conventional building, albeit unusually long. The Arena, in contrast, prevents establishing a normal street grid in the Lower Hill due to its enormous circular footprint, and it is also virtually impossible to do a reasonable conversion of the Arena to alternative uses.

So which building people like more is a matter of personal taste. But in terms of serving as an obstacle to redevelopment, it is no contest--the Arena is much more of an unsolvable problem.

Edit: Here is one rendering of the Terminal with passages cut through, plus the planned new buildings behind. I'm not sure I understand the location of the passages in this drawing, but it gets the idea across:

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Old 08-02-2011, 08:52 PM
 
Location: Pittsburgh area
9,879 posts, read 9,251,366 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrianTH View Post
There are huge differences between the Produce Terminal and the Arena. With minor modifications, the Produce Terminal will fit right into the street grid in that area. The Produce Terminal is also easily convertable to all sorts of uses, because it is basically just a conventional building, albeit unusually long. The Arena, in contrast, prevents establishing a normal street grid in the Lower Hill due to its enormous circular footprint, and it is also virtually impossible to do a reasonable conversion of the Arena to alternative uses.

So which building people like more is a matter of personal taste. But in terms of serving as an obstacle to redevelopment, it is no contest--the Arena is much more of an unsolvable problem.
Yeah, yeah. We hashed that out ages ago. I remember. Two words: who cares?

The produce terminal may be more convertible, but it doesn't make it any less ugly and in the way.

So I wouldn't say huge differences. They are minor differences, important ones from an economic standpoint perhaps, but minor.

That rendering is hopeless. It's still blocked. You need a STREET through it not a passageway. Heh. LOL, there are streets through it I guess. It's just the damn building is so monolithic it looks like there isn't. Plus it looks like they're not rendered to match up with the existing streets. That's lame. Should match with the streets. Still wanna call it only 3 blocks ditchdigger? That thing might as well be a mile in that spot.
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Old 08-02-2011, 09:01 PM
 
Location: About 10 miles north of Pittsburgh International
2,100 posts, read 1,936,252 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by greg42 View Post
Eh, the block size changes all over around there. Some of the lower number blocks are huge compared to the others, and then the other ones are short. But I don't think they're really shorter than other downtown blocks. Okay, so I'm looking at the map. 18th to 19th, and to a lesser extend, 19th to 20th, are short. 20th to 21st is pretty normal. 16th to 17th is extra long and 17th to 18th is fairly long. I still say 5 blocks. Yes, past 25th the blocks get super long.
Before I made that statement, I went to Google earth to verify what I suspected was the case.

The building is in the neighborhood of 14-15 hundred feet long. While most "city blocks" are elongated in some manner, the blocks further out in the strip itself are in the neighborhood of 500 feet on the long sides. I just went back and did a random sampling of blocks in a few other city neighborhoods, and that 500 foot ranges is still pretty valid for the city in general. My feelings won't be hurt if you'd like to verify that for yourself.

I just thought it was a point that needed to be made, given that what we're talking about would be a 40% difference in length.

Quote:
The historical value of this doesn't even grab me at all. Indeed I'm with h_curtis (assuming he's not being facetious, which is always a possibility ) on the idea that if you were to preserve a building with historical value, you might as well preserve the arena. That one is more interesting to me.
It may not be anything special from a historical or architectural point of view, but the difference between it and the arena is that the arena, any arena actually, is such a specialized structure that it really limits what you might be able to do with it. That's not so with your basic rectangular, flat floored, (reasonably) flat roofed, warehouse structure.

On edit: Or, what Brian said above. (Didn't see that post before composing mine.)

And it doesn't look like those cuts match up with the "streets" (if that's what they'd be), on the river side either. Maybe a traffic calming measure?
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Old 08-02-2011, 09:02 PM
 
Location: Pittsburgh
11,101 posts, read 7,215,337 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by greg42 View Post
The produce terminal may be more convertible, but it doesn't make it any less ugly and in the way.
I think people need to start calling it what it is. A loading dock that goes on forever with ugliness. Sometimes things are better taken down. This is a no brainer. Do something nice there. The Strip is a mess as it is let alone trying to keep that loading dock.
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Old 08-02-2011, 09:04 PM
 
Location: Pittsburgh
11,101 posts, read 7,215,337 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by greg42 View Post
Its heritage as a marketplace doesn't interest me much. A true market house building is far more interesting architecturally. The historical value of this doesn't even grab me at all. Indeed I'm with h_curtis (assuming he's not being facetious, which is always a possibility ) on the idea that if you were to preserve a building with historical value, you might as well preserve the arena. That one is more interesting to me.
I would hope the Civic Arena is more interesting than a loading dock. Not sure why the Civic Arena is even being mentioned on this thread? Seriously? This thing IS a loading dock. Nothing more.
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Old 08-02-2011, 09:06 PM
 
Location: Pittsburgh area
9,879 posts, read 9,251,366 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ditchdigger View Post
Before I made that statement, I went to Google earth to verify what I suspected was the case.

The building is in the neighborhood of 14-15 hundred feet long. While most "city blocks" are elongated in some manner, the blocks further out in the strip itself are in the neighborhood of 500 feet on the long sides. I just went back and did a random sampling of blocks in a few other city neighborhoods, and that 500 foot ranges is still pretty valid for the city in general. My feelings won't be hurt if you'd like to verify that for yourself.

I just thought it was a point that needed to be made, given that what we're talking about would be a 40% difference in length.
Fair enough. I walk downtown though. The blocks there, and in that section of the Strip, aren't 500 feet. Actually, some of them might be going uphill on 5th, Forbes, etc, but they're often broken up by a smaller street (larger than alley though).

I really think it matters more about walking streets than length. If you walk down a street and oh that building is in the way still, well, it doesn't really matter if it's technically only the length of 3 average blocks. It's in the damn way!
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Old 08-02-2011, 09:12 PM
 
Location: About 10 miles north of Pittsburgh International
2,100 posts, read 1,936,252 times
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Quote:
The blocks there, and in that section of the Strip, aren't 500 feet.
Take a look. I think you'll be surprised.
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Old 08-02-2011, 11:12 PM
 
Location: City of McKeesport
3,896 posts, read 3,765,352 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by greg42 View Post
Indeed I'm with h_curtis (assuming he's not being facetious, which is always a possibility ) on the idea that if you were to preserve a building with historical value, you might as well preserve the arena. That one is more interesting to me.
The only historical value the arena has to me is the history of the destruction of the Lower Hill District. And it's a rather depressing reminder... we traded a dense, historic neighborhood for this?
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Old 08-02-2011, 11:18 PM
 
Location: City of McKeesport
3,896 posts, read 3,765,352 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by h_curtis View Post
The Strip is a mess as it is let alone trying to keep that loading dock.
Here is where we differ. You probably think that every building in the Strip is ugly. Because these are modest historic buildings, not grand historic buildings (with the exceptions of some of the churches).

But the Strip has amazing character because of its collection of warehouses and factories and commercial buildings from the past. These all contribute to the feel and vibe of the Strip District. Together they possess a historical and architectural significance that alone they may not. So to disturb the way all of these buildings communicate with each other by demolishing the Produce Terminal would be to obliterate a very big part of the Strip's character. And those new Buncher buildings do not contribute anything to that.

I'm sorry but the Strip District does not need to look like Cranberry Vinyl Village Retirement Community. It has a gritty, urban vibe and that's what makes it cool. Obviously, the neighborhood is doing very well on its own, and doesn't need massive amounts of urban renewal or modern buildings to change that. I am in favor of the new buildings being built on those parking lots, but there is no reason to destroy the neighborhood's urban vibe to accommodate those ghastly Orlando-style condo units.

Last edited by PreservationPioneer; 08-02-2011 at 11:31 PM..
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