Friday, April 11, 2008

Friday: "I - That's a Good Question."

KDKA's Andy Sheehan is a tall and imposing figure, with sharp facial features that scream "justice!"

We would never want to be cornered by Andy Sheehan and made to answer questions.

The look on Our Mayor's face at 2:26 when he realizes that a TV reporter (of all creatures) is onto the "pattern of special favors" is priceless. (KDKA)


Under Mr. Ford's direction, the URA was supposed to become a one-stop shop aimed at expediting the approval process for developers and others hoping to do business in Pittsburgh. But Mr. Ford's way of cutting corners has cut the public out of the process. (P-G, Edit Board)

There it is in a nutshell. At the same time, we must be mindful that Ford was only doing exactly what Ravenstahl and the URA expected of him. We really hope that comes into focus.


Mr. Ravenstahl then told the Bureau of Building Inspection to order Lamar to stop work. If the firm does not comply, it could face fines of as much as $1,000 a day, and the city could seek an injunction ordering a halt. (P-G, Rich Lord)

The Comet wagers that the billboard will be "completed", in some half-finished sense, by early this afternoon.


Recently -- and we understand it was just a coincidence -- Lamar Advertising was granted a no-bid lease for a 1,200-square-foot electronic billboard on the front of the Grant Street Transportation Center, soon to be the fanciest Greyhound bus station in America. (P-G, Tony Norman)

T-Noble might also have noted the many code requirements from which Lamar was ludicrously exempted -- but he obviously had a lot of very important data to fit into this piece, so we'll let him slide.

"So no one told you life was gonna be this way
You're supposed to have it made when you run the URA
Now your wife's outta work and you're on shaky ground

And all because for your home theater you accepted surround sound..."
(Trib, Eric Heyl)

Now that's columnizing!


"At a time when we should be engaged in doing all we can to strengthen the family, we are facing cultural forces that want to so water down the definition of marriage that it could apply to any human relationship, or to no relationship at all," Bishop Zubik told members of the state Senate Judiciary Committee. (P-G, Karamagi Rujumba)

"Sexual attraction" and "love" are common threads among these newfangled, sub-par human relationships.


  1. The look on Our Mayor's face at 2:26 when he realizes that a TV reporter (of all creatures) is onto the "pattern of special favors" is priceless. (KDKA)

    that's HILARIOUS. He just stands there,, OH sHiiiii...

  2. At least he has learned not to rock nervously from side to side...

  3. This is your brain on drugs...

  4. Char -- as the Burgher pointed out, he is rocking forward and backward though, like he is on a ship. Pretty amusing once you notice it.

    Wow, look at us analyzing his body language. Maybe he *is* pgh's Brittney Spears....

  5. The $1K per day is but a pimple next to the $2M capital cost already invested by Lamar into the flashing lights.

    Do the math.

    Cost / Benefits need to be calculated in business decisions. Profits drive decisions, not votes.

  6. I like the idea of a big electronic billboard on the Greyhound bus station. What happens now? If you ever spent a minute near the old station you would know a big electronic flashing billboard is just what a bus station needs.

  7. What happens now, anonymous?

    First the permit that was already awarded gets appealed at the Zoning Board of Adjustment. I am guessing it will be invalidated.

    Per today's conciliatory session with the district judge, the permit application will be resubmitted, this time to the Planning Commission (and possibly the ZBA as well). This puts it in the pipeline of public processes, which is all we ever wanted.

    What will happen to it there? If I were to comment, I would probably object on the grounds of conspicuous consumption of energy and tackiness. I would recommend a grand and colorful mural instead, perhaps depicting the history of transportation in Pittsburgh: inclines, trolleys, buses. Throw some Maglev in there to depict the future.

    However, I'm afraid the electronic billboard stands a decent chance of getting its permit after all.

  8. Bram,

    If you think the Council is going to vote ANYTHING for Lamar in the next 4 years, your not tuned into the mindset of the Council.

    There was a chance for Lamar to ultimately get the board BEFORE they sued the Council. Now, they couldn't get the votes for a 2' x 3'sandwich board sign on the sidewalk outside of their offices.

  9. It's a tough call. My instinct is that council members have a strong desire to appear conciliatory in things, when such things are possible. IF the board wins approval from the Planning Commission, and if they make it through the week without the mayor pouring sugar in their gas tank, then yes I think they are pretty likely to affirm the permit.

  10. Of course, things didn't work out that way.