Monday, April 7, 2008

North Side Percolation

A North Side group is abandoning plans to start a community land trust aimed at helping to keep homes affordable and maintain diversity in the neighborhood.

A recent community survey conducted by the Central North Side Neighborhood Council found that safety issues such as drugs, guns, traffic and a lack of street lighting were the top concerns, followed by worries over vacant buildings and lots and litter. (Trib, Tony LaRussa)

The Central North Side Neighborhood Council is one of sixteen neighborhood organizations represented under the umbrella of the NSLC.

The neighborhood group announced in January that it was exploring the formation of a trust to allow it to buy blighted properties and create affordable housing by rehabilitating and selling each building while retaining ownership of the land.

More real estate speculation and trickle-down community benefits.

"We know that we want a safe, quality community that is family-friendly," Barber said. "But before we move forward with a new program, we need to talk to residents to see what they want for their community."

So there is a before we move forward!

Barber said his group will focus on a "community visioning process" in which a series of public meetings will be conducted during the next year. They will gather input and develop a strategy for implementation of the goals that are identified.

"At the end of this process, we may find that a land trust, along with other measures, is worth considering," Barber said.

This has little if nothing to do with the following.


Councilman William Peduto reports that three representatives from the North Side Leadership Conference met with two representatives of Northside United earlier today.

The Stadium Authority of the City of Pittsburgh has more leeway than it did under Mayor Murphy to have an impact on planning between and around the two stadiums, and in the surrounding neighborhoods. Councilman Peduto invited the two groups to write their own ideas and shape a common vision. Councilwomen Tonya Payne and Darlene Harris were also at the table.

Mayor Luke Ravenstahl, in a flurry of moves, dismissed Peduto's term on the Stadium authority later on in the afternoon. Councilman Bruce Kraus was named in his place.

No telling whether the Mayor was annoyed at Peduto about that, or about this.

State Representative Jake Wheatley also serves on the 5-member board, which is chaired by Deborah Lestitian.

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