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RECENT NEWS

Tuesday
Jan202015

New plans for One Grandview

SoPghReporter.com - January 20, 2015
By Austin Vaught

A hotel, luxury apartments, and retail space were among the plans for a new One Grandview Avenue plaza presented at the Mount Washington Community Development Corporation (MWCDC) meeting at the Mount Washington Senior Center on Virginia Avenue.

The preliminary concept for the four-acre plaza includes a 125-room hotel, 285 apartment units, 12 townhouses, a community courtyard, a leasable ballroom, and a parking garage. The plaza would be constructed on the space formerly occupied by the Edge Restaurant which was demolished in 2011.

The plans were presented by a newly formed development partnership comprised of Beau Beemsterboer of Sycamore Grandview Development, Steve Mosites and Mark Minnerly of Mosities Co ., and architect Nick Mansperger of Design Collective, Inc.

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Wednesday
Jan142015

Standard Life Building sold for over $5M

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette - January 14, 2015
By Mark Belko

Once part of Pittsburgh’s “Wall Street,” the Standard Life Building, Downtown, has sold for more than $5 million, and the new owner has plans to upgrade its apartments and add “a little pizzazz” to the street-level retail space.

Pele Investment Group closed on the sale of the 12½-story building at Fourth Avenue and Smithfield Street last week after bidding on the property during an online auction sponsored by Auction.com and the Beynon & Co. real estate firm in November.

The auction did not produce a sale, but Pele, a local group, ended up working out a deal in the aftermath to secure the property, said Richard Beynon, president of Beynon & Co.

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Tuesday
Jan132015

Urban Redevelopment Authority draws developer's ire

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette - January 13, 2015
By Mark Belko

A developer who tried for nearly three years to rehabilitate a former cigar wrapping facility on Liberty Avenue, Downtown, is upset that the city’s Urban Redevelopment Authority is seeking new proposals for the property.

Michael Clements, president of Iron City Ventures, is demanding the URA reimburse him for more than $4,000 he estimates he spent on trying to redevelop the vacant building at 604 Liberty Ave.

The URA terminated Iron City Ventures’ exclusive negotiations for the property in November and last week requested a new round of proposals from developers interested in rehabbing the structure.

“I am deeply disappointed, as I possess the means, commitment and experience to deliver on this project,” Mr. Clements said in an email.

The URA declined comment on the developer’s complaints.

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Saturday
Dec272014

Staying true to Pittsburgh neighborhoods a challenge for developers

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review - December 27, 2014
By Tom Fontaine

It's not easy to weave upscale apartments, condominiums and office buildings into historic neighborhoods known for their gritty charm, developers and architects say.

Pittsburgh has a lot of the latter and is rapidly getting more of the former.

The Strip District is the latest target. Developers this month announced plans for 700 luxury apartments near the historic Produce Terminal that will feature designated areas to store kayaks, wash dogs and charge electric cars. Rents will be as much as $2,200 a month.

“I'm typically a big fan of progress, but many (in the Strip) fear how some of the developments will change the vistas and feel of the Strip,” said John Jordan, 49, who owns a condo at the Otto Milk building that opened in 2011. “I'm more optimistic. Everything you do changes it somewhat, but I think the Strip will remain an iconic American neighborhood.”

Developers are committing billions of dollars to large-scale projects that propose a mix of housing, offices and retail in areas with rich histories.

They include plans at the former LTV Steel Co. site in Hazelwood ($1 billion in proposed development), the former Civic Arena site in the Lower Hill District ($440 million), along the shore of the Allegheny River in the Strip District between 11th and 21st streets ($400 million) and 25th and 27th streets ($130 million), and transit-oriented development in East Liberty ($127 million).

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Friday
Dec262014

How much does it cost to rent a midrange apartment in Pittsburgh? Probably more than you think

Pittsburgh Business Times - December 26, 2014
By Paul J. Gough

It takes a job that pays $22.92 an hour to rent a midrange apartment in the Pittsburgh region, according to data from a real-estate research firm tracking whether minimum-wage earners can afford to rent.

Zillow looked at 15,000 cities and towns around the U.S. to see whether someone making the national minimum wage of $7.25 an hour (and a 40-hour work week) could pay the rent with 30 percent or less annual income, the well-established guideline.

It couldn't find one city where a single minimum-wage earner could afford the median price of an apartment, the closest being Beecher, Mich., where you have to earn $10.64 an hour to afford a $532 median monthly rent.

In the Pittsburgh metro region, it takes a single person with a full-time job earning $22.92 an hour or a dual-worker household $11.41 an hour for the median rental.

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