Pittsburgh Mayor Peduto Touts His First 100 Days In Office

A map of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with its nei...

A map of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with its neighborhoods labeled. For use primarily in the list of Pittsburgh neighborhoods. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto is looking to spur manufacturing, help poor residents open bank accounts and offer free Internet in the City-County Building, according to a report on his administration’s first 100 days.

Peduto reiterated many of the initiatives he has touted since taking office Jan. 6, but he also offered a glimpse of what he is planning among the 63 accomplishments and ideas listed in the 13-page report.

“While we have accomplished a lot in our first 100 days, we have a long way to go to realize our potential as a city poised for greatness,” Peduto said in a statement.

The mayor was in Ontario, Canada, on Monday and Tuesday attending an international bicycle summit.

Read more: http://triblive.com/news/adminpage/5953206-74/peduto-report-pittsburgh#ixzz2z0xKUyvg
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Pittsburgh Is Home To The Best Cake In America, Says HuffPost

A map of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with its nei...

A map of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with its neighborhoods labeled. For use primarily in the list of Pittsburgh neighborhoods. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

We here at Pittsburgh Magazine are not so different from Jay-Z. We’re also all about the cake (cake, cake, cake cake). So we’ve been trumpeting the deliciousness of Prantl’s Bakery to anyone who would listen (that would be you, dear reader) for years. Thankfully, the nice folks over at the all-consuming digital media behemoth The Huffington Post have taken notice, too.

HuffPo’s Taste blog has named Prantl’s burnt almond torte The Best Cake America Has Ever Made. That’s a bold proclamation, made bolder still by the author outright trolling the inevitable New York City comment section mumblywumps right in the lead paragraph.

Read more: http://www.pittsburghmagazine.com/Best-of-the-Burgh-Blogs/The-412/April-2014/HuffPost-Taste-Praises-Prantls-for-Having-the-Best-Cake-America-Has-Ever-Made/

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New Mexican War Streets Grocer Connects With Pittsburgh North Side Neighborhood

A map of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with its nei...

A map of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with its neighborhoods labeled. For use primarily in the list of Pittsburgh neighborhoods. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Rob Collins believes he has the formula to reanimate a piece of lost history in the Mexican War Streets.

Collins is owner of the Allegheny City Market, a corner grocer that opened in Pittsburgh’s North Side last month in space formerly occupied by Doug’s Market.

Doug’s went out of business in January because of years of declining sales. Collins, however, envisions a more successful outcome.

“There’s no reason this place shouldn’t be a gold mine,” Collins said recently from behind the counter of his Arch Street shop. “It started off really slow, but it’s picking up. The last two days have been really busy.”

Collins, 46, of Manchester has worked in the grocery business for more than two decades. In 2010, he opened Bryant Street Market in Highland Park, which, he said, “is crushing it.”

Read more: http://triblive.com/news/allegheny/5891864-74/collins-market-streets#ixzz2yp4GTuDA
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Wyndham Grand Pittsburgh Turnaround Complete, Owner Patel Says

Kiran Patel says the days of turmoil at the Wyndham Grand Pittsburgh are finally over.

“The city and people at large want to see this property not as an eyesore,” Patel, the hotel’s owner since 2011, said this week.

Nearly $15 million in renovations were completed in January, adding three floors to the front of the building, more meeting space and a pool with a breathtaking view of the Fort Pitt Bridge and the Point.

But getting there was not easy. Patel, a Tampa physician and businessman, had to navigate the hotel out of bankruptcy, manage union unrest over a new contact, and complete the renovation project that was stalled for at least two years under the previous owners.

Read more: http://triblive.com/business/headlines/5924249-74/hotel-patel-wyndham#ixzz2yj4m6ho8
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Work On Civic Arena Site To Begin In August

A map of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with its nei...

A map of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with its neighborhoods labeled. For use primarily in the list of Pittsburgh neighborhoods. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Construction of streets at the former Civic Arena site, now a sprawling parking lot in the heart of Pittsburgh, will begin in August, officials said on Thursday.

It will be the first significant activity on the 28-acre site since crews completed demolition of the arena about two years ago. More than $500 million in redevelopment is planned.

“We’re almost ready to start construction of the urban street grid,” said Mary Conturo, executive director of the city-county Sports & Exhibition Authority.

The first phase is expected to cost $9 million and focus on building interior streets on the eastern part of the site, Conturo said. The work is expected to take about a year.

Read more: http://triblive.com/news/adminpage/5924203-74/conturo-site-million#ixzz2ybAziPaI
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Lengthy Investigation Ahead In Wake Of Franklin Regional Knife Attack

Map of Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania, Unit...

Map of Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania, United States Public School Districts (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Police anticipate a time-consuming investigation of the events leading to the stabbings of 21 students and a security guard at Franklin Regional Senior High School on Wednesday, Murrysville police chief Thomas Seefeld said this morning.

During a news conference at 6 a.m, outside the high school, Chief Seefeld, joined by Westmoreland County emergency management spokesman Dan Stevens and Franklin Regional schools Superintendent Gennaro Piraino, said all evidence had been removed from the corridor of the high school where the stabbings occurred.

“The crime scene has been processed and now witnesses and victims will be interviewed,” the chief said. “Our investigation will be lengthy.”

The chief, asked about the victims of the knife attack, said he had been told that one student had to be taken back to surgery about 1 a.m. today. He didn’t identify the person or the hospital where the person is being treated.

Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/local/westmoreland/2014/04/10/Lengthy-investigation-ahead-in-wake-of-Franklin-Regional-knife-attack/stories/201404100265#ixzz2yUmc4KXQ

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Greensburg Council Hears Pitch For Westmoreland County Land Bank

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Westmoreland ...

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Westmoreland County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A Westmoreland County Land Bank brings a chance to remove dilapidated buildings and find another productive use for them, a county official told Greensburg City Council on Tuesday.

“It’s a proactive way to tackle slum and blight in the county,” said April Kobus, executive director of the county redevelopment authority.

Council expects to consider an agreement for the initiative, approved by the county commissioners in December, on Monday.

Greensburg, the county seat, would be an ideal entity to be among the first of 10 municipalities to join the program as part of a multi-phase endeavor, Kobus said.

Read more: http://triblive.com/news/westmoreland/5906334-74/council-county-bank#ixzz2yRzmj4Ms
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Teen Stabs 22 At Pittsburgh-Area High School

Map of Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania, Unit...

Map of Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania, United States Public School Districts (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

MURRYSVILLE, PA (AP) – Flailing away with two kitchen knives, a 16-year-old boy with a “blank expression” stabbed and slashed 21 students and a security guard in the crowded halls of his suburban Pittsburgh high school Wednesday before an assistant principal tackled him.

At least five students were critically wounded, including a boy whose liver was pierced by a knife thrust that narrowly missed his heart and aorta, doctors said. Others also suffered deep abdominal puncture wounds.

The rampage – which came after decades in which U.S. schools geared much of their emergency planning toward mass shootings, not stabbings – set off a screaming stampede, left blood on the floor and walls, and brought teachers rushing to help the victims.

Police shed little light on the motive.

Read more at http://www.philly.com/philly/news/20140409_ap_dc67f56a2abf466db1c027077138e2cd.html#JcEUTVsMhStwpXdM.99

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Connellsville Area School Board Hears Option To Consolidation

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Fayette County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Fayette County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Connellsville Area School Board members heard a new option Monday night concerning possible consolidation of the district’s schools.

During the board’s agenda meeting, representatives from Eckles Construction presented what they considered a final draft of the feasibility study, which details eight options that include renovations, school closings and student relocations.

Previously, the directors were presented seven options.

“It’s more of a dramatic study,” said Mark E. Scheller, project architect with Eckles Construction. “And that’s for realigning the district’s grade levels.”

Read more: http://triblive.com/news/fayette/5903323-74/elementary-district-connellsville#ixzz2yKX18buj
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PennDOT To Spend More In Fayette, Westmoreland Counties

English: Pennsylvania county map

English: Pennsylvania county map (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The state is primed to pump approximately $33.8 million in additional money into highway and bridge projects in Fayette and Westmoreland counties this year with revenue generated from higher fees paid by motorists.

PennDOT said it would use the revenue from Act 89 to make about 59 miles of improvements to 12 roads in both counties.

In Westmoreland, 40 miles of improvements are planned to Routes 66, 119, 130, 356, 381, 819, 981 and 993 in Allegheny, Donegal, Hempfield, Loyalhanna, North Huntingdon, Penn, Salem, Unity and Washington townships, as well as Greensburg, Jeannette, Irwin, Manor and Trafford.

Those projects are estimated to cost $10.5 million.

Read more: http://triblive.com/news/westmoreland/5890090-74/bridge-museum-penndot#ixzz2yKTmZ9oQ
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Poll: Those In NEPA Among Most Miserable In U.S.

Locator map of the Scranton-Wilkes-Barre Metro...

Locator map of the Scranton-Wilkes-Barre Metropolitan Statistical Area in the northeastern part of the of . (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Editor’s note:  Lancaster, PA ranked 21st on the list :)  The happiest of any Pennsylvania Metropolitan Area.  Hey now!

People in the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre metropolitan area are among the most miserable in the nation, according to a report that ranks the area 177th out of 189 it surveyed to gauge residents’ sense of well-being.

Their continuing economic downslide, bad memories, misperceptions and even a lack of sunlight may play a part in Northeast Pennsylvanians’ gloomy outlook, some local experts say in commenting on the State of American Well-Being, the report released last week by Gallup and Healthways.

The highest-ranked area was Provo-Orem, Utah, and the lowest-ranked was the Huntington, W.Va.-Ashland, Ky. area. More than 178,000 people across the country were interviewed last year, including a sample size of 1,092 from the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre area.

The survey asked people to rate their life evaluation – a combination of current situation evaluation and the anticipated situation in five years – emotional health, work environment, physical health, healthy behaviors and basic access to health care and other necessities.

Read more: http://thetimes-tribune.com/news/poll-those-in-nepa-among-most-miserable-in-u-s-1.1663838

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Cuts In Suburban Pittsburgh Bus Routes Changed Lives

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Allegheny County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Allegheny County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A couple years ago, when Gloria Jefferson of McKeesport wanted to go somewhere, she walked to a bus stop near her house.

Then, in 2011, her commute became much less convenient. During a round of cuts to fix a budget deficit, the Port Authority canceled her route, which ran through the middle of McKeesport. Now, Ms. Jefferson, who is 80, has to walk a mile downhill to another stop.

The walk is tough for her, especially when she’s carrying grocery bags. Sometimes, she pays for a ride there or avoids going places. She wonders whether she’ll still be able to make the walk when she gets older.

“Right now, I feel good. How long it’s going to last, I don’t know,” she said. “I keep on praying that one day they’ll turn it around and bring the bus back up the hill.”

Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/news/transportation/2014/04/06/Cuts-in-suburban-bus-routes-changed-lives/stories/201404060065#ixzz2y9vjCoPz

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Heroin With $23,000 Street Value Seized, 2 Juveniles Arrested In Connellsville Bust

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Fayette County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Fayette County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Connellsville police reported on Friday that two juveniles were charged, and additional arrests are likely, following a drug bust that took about $23,000 worth of drugs off the streets.

“This was a big one,” city police Chief James Capitos said concerning the arrests of two male juveniles from McKeesport, with one having ties to Connellsville.

The origins of the arrests occurred on Wednesday afternoon when police pulled over a vehicle for a traffic violation. The driver and passenger were found to be in possession of suspected drugs, and police reportedly were able to get information from where the drugs were purchased.

Read more: http://triblive.com/news/fayette/5888773-74/capitos-heroin-police#ixzz2y41MkIk5
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US Steel Curtails Operations

U.S. Steel

U.S. Steel (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Production halts at U.S. Steel’s two largest mills could dent what is usually a good quarter for the Pittsburgh steelmaker and lead to higher steel prices.

On Wednesday, U.S. Steel informed customers of its Gary, Ind., mill that it was curtailing blast furnace and steelmaking operations at that plant because icy conditions on the Great Lakes are delaying shipments of iron ore from its Minnesota mines. The letter gave no word on how long those delays could last but was hopeful that shipments will improve with warming temperatures.

“It is possible that our ability to timely fill your orders will be temporarily impacted,” the company wrote, adding that it is trying to mitigate any impact of customers.

The announcement follows an incident last week at U.S. Steel’s Great Lakes mill near Detroit that forced the company to halt steel production there. Media reports indicate a large pipe damaged the roof covering one of its steelmaking furnaces.

Read more at http://www.philly.com/philly/business/US_Steel_curtails_operations.html#jp3C8BItOJ3CLCFG.99

Additional story: http://www.philly.com/philly/business/homepage/20140405_ap_a889ebee36a145ab8b177a5801db63ef.html

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Monroeville Hires Private Investigator To Conduct Internal Probe

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Allegheny County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Allegheny County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

For the second time in the past year, Monroeville has hired a private investigator to conduct an internal probe of the municipality’s turbulent affairs.

Interim Manager Timothy Little on Wednesday confirmed the existence of a broad and comprehensive investigation that will address, among other issues, recent personnel upheaval that involved his predecessor, the current police chief and several 911 dispatchers who were fired.

“We just want to get to the truth of what occurred here, that’s all,” Mr. Little said.

CSI Western PA is conducting the investigation. Its managing director, Joe Bellissimo, declined comment, citing client confidentiality and the ongoing nature of his work.

Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/local/east/2014/04/03/New-investigation-personnel-Monroeville/stories/201404030243#ixzz2xqhYSNG9

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Former Munhall Manager Charged With Embezzling $230K From Borough

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Allegheny County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Allegheny County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Former Munhall borough manager Matt Galla was arrested Tuesday for allegedly embezzling more than $230,000 from the borough between 2010 and 2013.

Galla, 44, of West Mifflin, who was hired as a part-time clerk for the borough in 2009, became manager in December 2010 and had the position until he abruptly resigned last June.

According to court documents, Galla had a budgeted salary of $60,000. In the complaint, Detective William Miller wrote that Galla overpaid himself by nearly $12,000 in 2010, $85,000 in 2011, $80,000 in 2012 and $53,000 during the first six months of 2013.

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Bailey Park Development Takes Shape On Pittsburgh’s Mt. Washington

A map of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with its nei...

A map of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with its neighborhoods labeled. For use primarily in the list of Pittsburgh neighborhoods. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Bailey Park is so new, it had to be given a name.

“There is no sub-neighborhood here,” developer and architect Justin Cipriani says of the new one he is working on. “So that’s why we came up with Bailey Park.”

He is talking about a community of 11 homes and an apartment building on the fringe of Grandview Park right where Bailey Avenue and Beltzhoover Avenue meet.

He wants the area to be its own neighborhood so much that he is building a loop street around two of the homes and behind the other nine.

The street will meet city standards so all municipally provided functions — such as garbage collection and snow removal — can take place there.

Read more: http://triblive.com/business/realestate/5766786-74/park-says-homes#ixzz2xYrCLBwA
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Last Year’s Gridlock Looms Large Over Pirates’ Opener

PNC Park

PNC Park (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Fans arriving for Opening Day on Monday will be getting an earlier start to tailgating around PNC Park, and so will police hoping to avoid last year’s gridlock — but not by much.

Police spokeswoman Sonya Toler said officers assigned to ease congestion and operate signals at the busiest intersections will start arriving at their posts at 10:30 a.m., at least 45 minutes earlier than last year.

But this year’s first pitch is about a half-hour earlier, about 1 p.m. Parking lots and garages open to tailgaters at 9 a.m., and the ballpark gates open at 11. Officials urge fans to have patience, use mass transit or park farther away from the ball field.

“If people can curtail their excitement with a little bit of patience, we’ll be able to help them get where they need to go,” Toler said.

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Braddock Library Looking Ahead At 125th Anniversary

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Allegheny County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Allegheny County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

John Hempel remembers his father, Robert, pausing every time he drove past the Braddock Carnegie Library.

“That’s where I taught myself to read,” Robert would tell his young son as he’d point to the stately building.

The elder Hempel’s story likely mirrors those held by many residents of the library’s service area. For more than a century, the building has served as a hub for community activity and education, as intended by its founder and namesake, Andrew Carnegie. As the 125th anniversary of the building approaches, library leaders are preparing to celebrate all that has taken place during its storied past.

“Andrew Carnegie said he intended this to be a center for light and learning for generations to come,” says John Hempel of Braddock Hills, president of the library’s board. The memories of his father inspired Hempel to get involved more than two decades ago. “It’s such a neat mission statement and really what the whole place is all about.”

Read more: http://triblive.com/lifestyles/morelifestyles/5768153-74/library-carnegie-braddock#ixzz2xV02JAgJ
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Pittsburgh Bald Eagles Live Cam

A pair of bald eagles have taken up residence in a Pittsburgh neighborhood and two of their three eggs have hatched.  If you want to see the live video feed of the eagles, click here: http://www.pixcontroller.com/eagles/index-old.htm

Pittsburgh Post Gazette story about the eagles: http://www.post-gazette.com/sports/outdoors/2014/03/28/Experts-say-baby-eagle-is/stories/201403280187

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