The Voice (PHCA Newsletter) is out!

Most likely, if you live in Polish Hill you’ve already received a copy of the Fall-Winter 2016 newsletter in the mail. If not, and you would like to check it out, we’ve archived it online here: The Voice Fall-Winter 2016

Among the primary purposes of the current newsletter is to encourage you to become a member of the Polish Hill Community Association! The newsletter contains a mail-in membership request form, but you can also enroll online and pay the $5 membership dues through Paypal. To do this go HERE!

District 7 Newsletter – January 2014

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Newly-elected District 7 Councilwoman Deb Gross officially takes office

It’s official! District 7 finally has a new City Council representative – Councilwoman Deb Gross. Councilwoman Gross was elected by District 7 voters to fulfill the rest of former-Councilman Patrick Dowd’s term, which will run through 2015. Deb has a long history of community involvement, specifically with regards to her work with local non-profits and the arts.  For Deb’s full biography, take a look at her bio page on the new District 7 website.

We are also proud to announce the new installment of the D7 team, which consists of two familiar faces in newly expanded roles. Take a look at our meet the team page, and be sure to stay in touch!

Deb Gross hits ground running, gives D7 residents a voice in future of Strip District Produce Terminal building

The Produce Terminal is one of the Strip District’s architectural and historic keystones, and is at the center of one of the most integral sites to be developed under the comprehensive Allegheny River Green Boulevard plan. The Green Boulevard plan, perhaps the most comprehensive plan for development in Pittsburgh, will set the tone for Pittsburgh’s future, with its most dramatic impact occurring in District 7.

Since being elected to serve the residents of District 7, Deb has been a vocal advocate for a delay in the sale of the Produce Terminal building, and has been outspoken in her stance that any proposed alterations of the building should occur under the careful oversight of City Council. Stay tuned to the District 7 Facebook and Twitter pages for real-time updates on the fate of the Produce Terminal and how Councilwoman Gross is leading the charge to ensure that this essential piece of the Strip’s past is best utilized in comprehensive developments that will shape the neighborhood’s future.

Do you have a great idea for Deb and the new D7 office? Let us know!

With a new City Council representative and an updated staff, the District 7 office is excited to hear your suggestions about what changes or initiatives you’d like to see in your neighborhood. Hitting the ground running to serve D7 neighbors is Deb’s highest priority during the transition.

Please use the feedback form on the District 7 webpage to let us know what you’d like to see our office do to help your neighborhood. From bike infrastructure to zoning issues to economic development and public safety, Councilwoman Gross is excited to hear what you think!


Polish Hill Community Meeting January 7
There will be a public presentation regarding a proposed residential development in Polish Hill at the January meeting of the Polish Hill Civic Association, which will be held on Tuesday, January 7th in the basement of the West Penn Recreation Center at 6:30 pm.

Highland Park Community Council
Listen to District 7 Councilwoman Deb Gross talk with Highland Park neighbors at the January meeting of the Highland Park Community Council, which will be held on Thursday,  January 16th at  the Union Project at 801 N. Negley Avenue, beginning at 7 pm. Deb will discuss her progress representing District 7 since her swearing-in in early December, as well as talk with Highland Park residents and stakeholders about their ideas and requests for the district.

Learn about the Affordable Care Act at the Lawrenceville Carnegie Library
Would you like to learn more about the Affordable Care Act and how it will affect you? Join your neighbors at the Lawrenceville branch of the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh for an ACA information session and enrollment assistance seminar on Saturday, January 18 at 10 am. At the information session, you will be able to learn more about how health insurance works and what programs you and your family may be eligible for.


Did you know that Pittsburgh City Council elects the City Council President immediately following the swearing-in of newly elected and re-elected members? This year’s vote for Council President will occur on January 6th, immediately following the swearing-in ceremony for the new Council.

District 7 Newsletter – November 2013

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Election Day in District 7 — Today!

This year’s Election Day will include the opportunity for District 7 residents to vote for a representative to fill the currently vacant City Council District 7 seat. For information about Election Day, residents are encouraged to take a look at the Allegheny County Elections Division’s webpage, where information about registration, absentee ballots, and clarification regarding voter identification is available.

Need to find your polling place? Visit the Pennsylvania Voter Services website, where registered voters can enter address information to find their designated polling location.

Fall cleanup: how to dispose of leaves and other yard debris

While watching the leaves change is one of our favorite things about the fall months, cleaning up and properly disposing of leaves is an important basic quality of life issues in our neighborhoods during the fall season.

To better serve District 7 constituents, we’ve put together this blurb about special DPW fall yard debris pickup dates, yard debris drop-off center locations and requirements.

Follow this link to access the leaf and yard debris disposal article hosted on the District 7 website. 

Allegheny CleanWays to clear illegal dump site at Butler St. border of Stanton Heights, Morningside

The Office of City Council District 7 is excited to announce that Allegheny CleanWays’ Dumpbusters will be clearing one of the illegal dump sites in the Allegheny River Greenway* which we reported to them this summer.

Dumpbusters’ experienced volunteers are preparing the site for clean-up now and are looking for additional neighborhood volunteers to join them in a major effort on Saturday, November 9th.  This is a steep site, so volunteers should be sure-footed, adventurous and at least 16 years of age (those under 18 must bring the attached waiver signed by a parent.)

The clean up will be held on Saturday, November 9th from 9:30am to 1:00pm.  This includes a training at the start and pizza at the end.

For more information and to register with Allegheny CleanWays, visit this link.

For questions, contact Leah Thill at 412-381-1301 or email

*The Allegheny River Greenway is the preserved green space on the edge of Stanton Heights and Morningside near Butler Street.


Community Events

The 9th annual Lawrenceville Artist’s Studio Tour will be held on Saturday, November 2nd from 10 AM until 6 PM. This year’s self-guided tour is the largest ever, and includes 17 studios and 42 artists. For a list of studios and a tour map, take a look at the Lawrenceville Artist’s Studio Tour 2013 Facebook page, or call 412-683-6488.

The Zone 5 Public Safety Council will hold its November meeting on Tuesday, November 12th at 7 PM at the Union Project at 801 N. Negley Avenue. A special guest speaker from the of City of Pittsburgh’s Department of Public Safety  will be on hand to talk about a plan to increase the number of cameras used to improve public safety in Zone 5.

On the evening of Thursday November 21st State Senator Jim Ferlo, Highmark officials, and West Penn Hospital staff will host a Town Hall Meeting at the Teamsters Temple (4701 Butler Street) from 6-8 PM. During the meeting, Highmark and West Penn officials will report on their progress in promoting health and sustaining vital medical services to insure the success of West Penn Hospital. The meeting is free and open to the public.

Did you know?

Because the November 5th election to fill the vacant District 7 City Council seat is a special election, its winner could be sworn in once the election results are officially certified by the Allegheny County Elections Division. This process generally takes about two weeks after Election Day results are collected.

Excerpts from the District 7 Newsletter – October 2013


Happy Halloween from the District 7 office

Get ready for another spooky Halloween season in Pittsburgh! The official trick-or-treat hours in the City of Pittsburgh will be held on Thursday, October 31st from 5:30-7:30 p.m.  Check out the Department of Public Safety on the City’s official Halloween information page .

Planning Commission to review Produce Terminal historic designation nomination

On October 15, 2013, the Pittsburgh Planning Commission will hear and review the Historic Review Commission’s briefing on the Produce Terminal’s nomination to be designated an historic structure by the City of Pittsburgh.

There will also be an opportunity during the meeting for public comment. The Planning Commission meeting will begin at 2 PM on the first floor of the Robin Civic Building located at 200 Ross Street in Downtown Pittsburgh. Take a look at the Planning Commission’s website for more information about the Commission and its responsibilities.

City of Pittsburgh fall seasonal yard debris collection day

Clean up your yard and garden this fall by taking advantage of the Department of Public Works’ Environmental Services Division’s fall 2013 yard debris collection day to be held on Saturday, November 9th.

Please note the following guidelines for debris collection:

Bag Leaves for Collection: Residents must bag leaves in paper bags only and place them out at your normal refuse collection site. Bags should NOT exceed 35 pounds.

Leaves in plastic bags will not be accepted. Paper yard debris bags can be purchased at local hardware or department stores.

Tree Branches and Bushes: Cut, bundle and tie branches and bushes in lengths not exceeding 5 ft. in length. Tree branch diameter should not exceed four (4) inches.

Please note that City crews will NOT collect dirt, rocks, stones or cement. Yard debris left at the curb by contracted lawn care workers or independent contractors will not be collected by city crews.

Yard debris not meeting the collection guidelines will not be collected by city crews.

If you have any questions please contact Environmental Services at (412)-255-2631 or (412)-255-2773.


Council to Go

Join District 7 staff for Council to Go, City Council District 7’s mobile district office, where residents are encouraged to voice their concerns, ideas, and questions related to city government and services.

Polish Hill – Wednesday, October 9th, 7pm-8pm, Polish Hill Civic Association, 3060 Brereton Street

Community Events

There will be a public meeting regarding the liquor license application of a proposed business, Beer on Butler, to be located at 4811 Butler Street in Lawrenceville. The owners of the proposed business will be on hand to speak with the community about any questions or concerns related to the business or its liquor license application on Thursday, October 10th at the Boys and Girls Club (4600 Butler Street) at 6:00 PM.

It’s almost time for the Polish Hill Civic Associations’ fall yard sale, which will be held on Saturday, October 12th from 10:30 AM to 6 PM.

Yard sale donations will be accepted from Monday, October 7th through Friday, October 11th. The PHCA is looking for useful things, odd things, and old things; household items, tools, books, records, toys, art and craft materials, and more. Appliances must work, and furniture must be in good shape. The PHCA cannot accept clothing, shoes, or upholstered furniture.

[PHCA note:  It’s a bake sale too, so we’re also seeking donations of cookies and other tasty items]

For more information, call the PHCA at 412-681-1950, or email

Did you know?

The voter registration deadline to vote in the upcoming municipal election (which includes the race to fill the current City Council District 7 vacancy) is Monday, October 7th.

Individuals needing to register to vote may apply in person Monday through Friday between the hours of 8:30 AM and 4:30 PM at the Office of the Registration Commission in Room 609 of the County Office Building located at 542 Forbes Avenue in Downtown Pittsburgh. The Elections Division will remain open until 5:00 PM on October 7th to accept hand-delivered voter registration forms. For more information  about registering to vote, take a look at the Allegheny County Elections Division’s website.


Call for volunteers: help distribute the Polish Hill Voice

The neighborhood newsletter, the Polish Hill Voice, is mailed to PHCA members and is also available at some local businesses and at the church.  But many residents still don’t see the newsletter, and many who aren’t online don’t see Blogski or receive the e-blast — other places where we provide updates on neighborhood happenings and PHCA projects.   We would like to help keep more residents informed about neighborhood news and developments.  To that end, the PHCA is now working to get funding to print and mail copies of the Voice to every household in Polish Hill.

Until that funding is in place, we’re calling for volunteers to help us distribute the November issue of the newsletter.  This is something that volunteers can do at their own, and a number of people have stepped forward to help out.  But there are still a number of streets left for distribution.  If you have an hour or two to spare sometime in the next several days, and would be willing to help out, please contact us.  Call 412.681.1950 or email

Here is the current (November) issue of the Polish Hill Voice, and here is the page with more back issues.

District 7 Newsletter for June 2012

News and Updates

Councilman Patrick Dowd Appointed to the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh Executive Board

The Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh (CLP) Board of Trustees has appointed City Council District 7 representative, Councilman Patrick Dowd, to serve as a Public Representative on the Executive Committee of the CLP’s Board of Trustees. In the Carnegie Library’s May 14, 2012 Board of Trustees meeting the Board entertained candidates for election to the CLP Executive Committee, which acts as the primary steering committee for the CLP Board of Trustees.

Movies in the Park Comes to Highland Park

Thanks to a Highland Park constituent request, Councilman Dowd and the District 7 office worked with Pittsburgh Citiparks to bring Pittsburgh Citiparks “Cinema in the Park” series to Reservoir Drive in Highland Park. The popular summer series will also be returning to Lawrenceville’s Arsenal Park. Click here to find the lineup of family-friendly popular films to be shown free of charge in two of District 7’s best summer venues.

PRESERVEPGH Holding Public Forum

Join PRESERVEPGH on June 13th from 6:00pm-8:00pm at Bakery Square, 6425 Penn Avenue for a public forum and voice your opinions about the program and its goals. PRESERVEPGH is a program run through the City of Pittsburgh Planning Department focusing on putting together a master plan for the City while also preserving important pieces of historical architecture. More information about PRESERVEPGH is available at

District 7 Welcomes New Staff!

District 7 is very excited to welcome Nathaniel Hanson as the District 7 team’s new Communications and Administration Manager. Nate, a District 7 resident, lives in Lawrenceville and already loves working in the District 7 office.

May Proclamations

During the month of May, Councilman Dowd presented the following proclamation to City Council for approval:

Mrs. Karen Barry for dedicating over 40 years of her life to positively impacting students from Bloomfield and the surrounding neighborhoods as a kindergarten teacher at Immaculate Conception School in Bloomfield. Mrs. Barry was nominated to receive City recognition by Immaculate Conception School 8th grade student, Rebecca Pietropaolo.

Upcoming Events and Meetings

Council to Go

Join Councilman Patrick Dowd and his staff at Council to Go, his mobile district office, to voice your concerns, ideas, and questions about local government and services.

Morningside – Thursday, June 7, 7:00pm-8:00pm – Meet at the Intersection of Greenwood and Chislett Streets and join Councilman Dowd and his staff on a walk through Morningside.

Lawrenceville – Friday, June 15, 7:30am-9:00am – Perk Me Up, 4407 Butler Street

Community Events

June 6th-9th, 321 Edmond Street – Join Immaculate Conception and St. Joseph’s for their Parish Festival from 6 to 10:30 pm for games, rides, and food . Dinner will be served from 4-7pm. Call 412-621-5199 with any questions.

June 12th, 6:30pm, Lawrenceville Goodwill, 118 52nd Street – Lawrenceville United will be holding its General Membership Meeting, where Lawrenceville residents will be able to renew their LU memberships and find out about happenings throughout Lawrenceville.

June 16th, 11:00am-4:00pm – Join fellow garden lovers for the Lawrenceville Garden Tour. The tour is free of charge and open to the public, providing a fun filled afternoon beginning at the Lawrenceville Organic Community Garden, located in the Allegheny Cemetery near the Butler Street entrance.

Pittsburgh Public Pools

City public pools are set to open on June 14th. Daily admission cost is $3 for children ages 3-15 and $4 for individuals 16 and older. Season passes are also available for children, adults, and families. Pools are open Monday-Friday, 1:00pm-7:45pm and Saturdays, Sundays, and Holidays, 1:00pm-5:45pm. Public pools in District 7 are the Bloomfield Pool, Highland Park Pool, and West Penn Pool (in Polish Hill). More information about pool hours and season passes is available here.

Did You Know?

The average person in the United States uses anywhere from 80-100 gallons of water per day. Flushing the toilet actually takes up the largest amount of this water. Conserving water in the hot summer months goes a long way towards environmental health, while also helping to cut everyday costs. By installing more efficient water fixtures and regularly checking for leaks, households can reduce daily indoor per capita water use by about 35% to about 45.2 gallons per day.

In Pittsburgh, the Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority compiles a report detailing the quality of Pittsburgh’s drinking water. The report outlines where drinking water comes from and how it is treated. Read the report here to better stay informed about each and every drop of your 80-100 gallons.

District 7 Newsletter- May 2012

News and Updates

2012 Paving Season Begins!

The Department of Public Works has begun the 2012 paving season. This year’s $11.3 million budget will allow the City to pave about 60 miles of City streets. Based on environmental conditions, the street paving work season is performed between April 15 and November 20.  To find out which streets in District 7 are being resurfaced this season and how streets are prioritized, visit the City’s PAVEMENT PLAN . You can also follow “@CityPGH_DPW” on Twitter, or call the Mayor’s 3-1-1 response line for more details.

April Proclamations

During the month of April, Councilman Dowd presented the following proclamation to City Council for approval:

Comcast for their 11th annual Comcast Cares Day which included a clean-up project in Stanton Heights to make way for a proposed community green space, as well as other important projects in the West End and the North Side.

District 7 office bids farewell to Jen, Hello to new staff!

This month brings change to the District 7 office as our Director of Communications and Administration, Jennifer Thoma, leaves to fill a position at Chatham University. We will miss Jen dearly and thank her for all her hard work and dedication to District 7! Also, the District 7 office welcomes Moira Egler to the team as Constituent Services Assistant. Stay tuned for an update on our new Communications and Administration Manager!

Upcoming Events and Meetings

Council to Go

Join Councilman Patrick Dowd and his staff at Council to Go, his mobile district office, to voice your concerns, ideas, and questions about local government and services.

Polish Hill – Wednesday, May 9, 7:00pm-8:00pm – Polish Hill Civic Association, 3060 Brereton Street

Highland Park – Thursday, May 24, 7:00pm-8:00pm — Enrico’s Tazza D’Oro, 1125 N. Highland Ave

Community Events

May 12th& 13th,  Butler Street, Staring at 10am and continuing throughout the day, take a stroll down Butler Street during the 2012 Lawrenceville Blossom Tour: A Celebration of Spring and Lawrenceville’s dedication to local goods and services! For a list of participating businesses and more information, please visit

Saturday, May 12th, 11:00am-4:30pm, Baum Grove, — At the intersection of Harriet, Fairmount, and Roup Streets in Friendship will be the Friendship Flower and Folk Festival for music, fresh flowers, food, raffles, and demonstrations. Locally grown flowers, vegetables, and perennials will be for sale to support the mainternance of Baum Grove. There will also be demonstrations on sustainable practices, gardening, and fitness.

Thursday, May 17th, 6:00pm, Teamster Temple, 4701 Butler Street — The Zone 2 and Zone 5 Citizens Public Safety Councils, with the support of the Zone 4 command, are excited to announce a city-wide public safety meeting for Pittsburgh residents on “Summertime Safety for Youth”.  This meeting will cover various city programs and policies to keep our youth safe and out of trouble in the summer, as well as general updates from our Public Safety divisions and a special presentation from the Mayor’s Office.  Your RSVP by Thursday, May 10th would be appreciated for food orders. Questions and RSVPs can be sent to Melanie Brown at

Summer Farmer’s Markets


Mondays 3:30-7:30pm, East Liberty, Penn Circle West (Opening May 14th)

Thursdays 3:30-7:30pm, Bloomfield, Immaculate Conception School Parking Lot, Cedarville St & Friendship Ave. (Opening May 17th)

Lawrenceville United & District 7 Office

Saturdays 12:30-4:00pm, Lawrenceville, 118 52nd St (Opening June 2nd)

Did You Know?

Each Department of the City of Pittsburgh is responsible for archiving their own historic documents, whether they are old maps from City Planning, past Council archives and legislation in the City Clerk’s Office, or essential documents from the City Controller’s Office. The Pennsylvania State Code requires all municipalities and counties that are NOT first and second class cities care for their historic documents in an archive maintained by the governing body. Municipalities or counties that are not able to adequately care for their documents are required to hand them over to the state’s Historical and Museum Commission.

District 7 April Newsletter


SOUNDWAVES Applications Due April 2
The Union Project, in partnership with the Kelly Strayhorn Theatre, is now accepting applications for SOUNDWAVES, a new steelband ensemble for teens. Participation is free, but registration and an audition are required. Students who are 13-18 that have a passion for playing music are encouraged to apply. A small instrumental rental fee will be charged. The six-week program will culminate in a public performance at the theater, while rehearsals will be held at Union Project in Highland Park. Applications are due on Monday, April 2. View the application here or learn more about SOUNDWAVES here.

Clean Up Scheduled on Earth Day in Stanton Heights
The proposed Stanton Heights parklet will be one of the sites of a Comcast Cares Day on Saturday, April 21, 2012. Allegheny Cleanways and Comcast Cares are partnering to clean up the site at the corner of Stanton Avenue and Woodbine Street in preparation for consideration of developing a passive park on this property in Stanton Heights. The proposed park will incorporate a short walking trail, native plantings, local art and historic interpretation. For more information on the park or Comcast Cares Day please contact

Polish Hill Loves its Blocks
The Polish Hill Civic Association is the recipient of one of Mayor Luke Ravenstahl’s Love Your Block grant awards. Love Your Block is an innovative partnership between the City of Pittsburgh, The Home Depot Foundation and local residents that works to revitalize Pittsburgh neighborhoods – block by block.  Polish Hill will use their $500 award to purchase supplies and equipment to beautify two vacant lots by planting gardens and improving the surrounding area.

February Proclamations
During the month of March, Councilman Dowd presented the following proclamations to City Council for approval:

Forbes Hospice and all of their social workers for their compassionate and dedicated service; in recognition of National Social Work Month.

Pat Bigley, Thomas Donnelly, Dennis Gillenberger, Mitchell Hovanec and Chuck Zezza for preventing a potential tragedy stemming from a significant gasleak near Peabody High School through their leadership, resourcefulness and initiative.


Council to Go

Join Councilman Patrick Dowd at Council to Go, his mobile district office, to voice your concerns, ideas, and questions about local government and services.

Lawrenceville — Friday, April 20, 7:30am-9am — Perk Me Up, 4407 Butler Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15201.

Morningside — Thursday, April 26, 7pm-8pm — St. Raphael’s Multi-purpose Room, 1118 Chilett Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15206.

Community Events

Saturday April 7, 9:30am-8pm — The Union Project will be hosting a Monster Open House; a full day of family freindly, monster-themed activities featuring artmaking, collaboration,learning opportunities and an evening dance aprty.Visit for more information.

Friday, April 20, 10am-1pm — Job Fair – Ross Community Center, 1000 Ross Municipal Drive, Pittsburgh, 15237. Come meet with local, state, and federal employers who are currently hiring. Applications will be accepted on site. Those attending are encouraged to bring several copies of their resume. Free and open to the public. Organized by Representative Dom Costa. 412-361-2040 for more information.

Saturday, April 28, 9am-12noon — Representative Dom Costa will be holding a Shredding and eWaste Recycling event at St. Raphael’s parking Lot at 1154 Chislett Street. Bring All documents you no longer need that contain personal information, including Social Security numbers, credit card numbers and bank account numbers, etc.. Accepted eWaste includes desktop and laptop computers, computer accessories, TV’s, VCR’s, Cell Phones, etc. Free and open to the public. 412-361-2040 for more information.

Saturday, April 28 & 29 – 15th Annual Art All Night at Willow Development, 4001 Willow Street in Lawrenceville. Art All Night is a grassroots event staged by an all-volunteer crew. A celebration of the arts and community, the show grows in popularity each year, bringing thousands of people from all over the region into Lawrenceville. In 2011 Art All Night Lawrenceville featured work by 1280 artists and was attended by over 12,000 guests. Free and open to the public. For more info, please contact

If you know of any community-oriented events in your District 7 neighborhood that we should publicize through our monthly newsletter and District 7 website, please email Jennifer Thoma by the 1st of each month.


As Sping has sprung, we thought we’d remind you that no matter what direction you drive from Pittsburgh, you can get away to any of these state parks in close proximity to the City. They offer visitors swimming, boating, fishing, hunting, nature programs, and hiking and biking trails. Take some short trips this year to renew, refresh and re-engage your spirit. A few ideas:

Prince Gallitzin State Park

Prince Gallitzin State Park, located in Cambria County, Pennsylvania, east of Pittsburgh, features 1600-acre Glendale Lake, a large campground, and plenty of trails, scenic vistas and other recreational opportunities.

McConnells Mill State Park

McConnells Mill State Park, located in Butler County, Pennsylvania, north of Pittsburgh, features the 3225-acre Lake Arthur for fishing, sailing, swimming and boating, plus hiking and bicycling trails, picnic areas and hunting.

Moraine State Park & Lake Arthur

Moraine State Park, located in Butler County, Pennsylvania, north of Pittsburgh, features the 3225-acre Lake Arthur for fishing, sailing, swimming and boating, plus hiking and bicycling trails, picnic areas and hunting.

Ohiopyle State Park

Ohiopyle State Park is arguably one of the most scenic state parks in the state of Pennsylvania. Learn about its many attractions, including whitewater rafting, hiking, biking, camping and waterfalls, and get the information you need to plan your Ohiopyle visit.

Point State Park

Point State Park, located at the point where three rivers meet in downtown Pittsburgh, provides a nice oasis for downtown workers and visitors. Learn about the interesting attractions of this tiny city park.

Raccoon Creek State Park

Raccoon Creek State Park is one of the largest and most beautiful state parks in Pennsylvania, and features the 101-acre Raccoon Lake. Learn about its many attractions, including boating, fishing, hiking, biking and camping, and get the information you need to plan your visit to Raccoon Creek State Park.

Hillman State Park

Hillman State Park, located in Washington County, is primarily maintained for hunting, and also offers hiking trails.

Jennings Environmental Education Center

This wonderful education center in Butler County covers approximately 300 acres and offers hiking and other nature related programs, including a relict prarie.

Ryerson Station State Park

Located in Greene County, southwest of Pittsburgh, Ryerson Station encompasses over 1,000 acres near the West Virginia border. The park offers camping, picnicking, hunting, fishing, boating, hiking, swimming, sledding, ice fishing, snowmobiling and cross country skiing.

Resource: About Pittsburgh

District 7 Newsletter for March 2012


PWSA release RFP for Management Consulting

The Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority (PWSA) issued a Request for Qualifications and Request for Proposals (“RFQ/RFP”), for the provision of Interim Executive Management Services. The contractor will provide Interim Executive Management Services to PWSA and will essentially serve as Executive Director for one year. As such, the contractor will oversee day to day operations as well as provide strategic vision and direction required for effective, timely, and transparent management of the PWSA.

The scope of services for the contract includes: the provision of Interim Executive Management Services; general administration and management consulting; financial analysis; infrastructure maintenance and replacement consulting; operating and capital budget development; and miscellaneous responsibilities. The term of the contract is for 12 months, not to exceed 18 months. Follow the link to view official RFQ/RFP . The Authority hopes to have the chosen firm on board by July 1, 2012.

Summer Camp Returns for Youth in Lawrenceville

Lawrenceville United will once again host a free summer camp (Summer Celebration) with new and exciting environmental activities for Lawrenceville youth thanks to new and generous support from the Verizon Foundation and continued partnerships with the City of Pittsburgh, Arsenal Middle School, and local private and public youth service and program providers. For more information, please go to Lawrenceville United Summer Celebration Day Camp.

TreeVitalize Deadline Approaching

TreeVitalize supports street tree, park and riverfront trail plantings in the region. The application process for Fall 2012 TreeVitalize plantings is now open for communities in the City of Pittsburgh and Allegheny County.  All applications are due by 4pm on Friday, March 23, 2012. City of Pittsburgh Tree Request Forms are required.

February Proclamations

During the month of February, Councilman Dowd presented the following proclamations to City Council for approval:

Carnegie Library Customer Appreciation Week – to celebrate the restoration of hours and all that the Library has to offer, several Friends of the Library groups hosted Customer Appreciation Open Houses at their respective neighborhood libraries during the week of February 20.

Center for Victims of Violent Crime Peace It Together Day – City Council named Wednesday, February 22 after this event which recognizes awardees and their commitment to resolve conflict, restore relationships and build peaceful communities. 2012 Peace Partner Award honorees include: Dr. Mary Carrasco, Matthew Fidel, Fred Rogers (posthumously) and the Sisters of St. Joseph of Baden, PA.

Mike and Robert Perry-Nichols Day – 2012 marks the twentieth year that Mike Nichols has served the youngest learners in the Pittsburgh Public School system through his community self-designed reading program and the first anniversary of his son Robert surviving a double-lung transplant–the first ever done in Pittsburgh on a sickle cell patient.


Council to Go

Join Councilman Patrick Dowd at Council to Go, his mobile district office, to voice your concerns, ideas, and questions about local government and services.

Polish Hill — Wednesday, March 14, 7pm-8pm — PHCA Office, 3060 Brereton Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15219. Special Guest: Gerald Akrie, Supervisor of Animal Care and Control.

Highland Park — Thursday, March 29, 7pm-8pm — Enrico’s Tazza D’oro, 1125 N. Highland Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15206.

Community Events

Wednesday, March 14, 1pm-3pm — City Council Chambers, 414 Grant Street, 5th Floor, Pittsburgh — Cablecast Post Agenda regarding the resolution authorizing the Mayor to enter into negotiations for an agreement with the Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority granting the Authority the rights and responsibility relative to stormwater management in the City of Pittsburgh. Free and open to the public.

Thursday, March 15, 6pm–8pm — Grey Box Theatre, 3595 Butler Street, Lawrenceville — Allegheny Riverfront Green Boulevard Plan Community Meeting. Free and open to the public.

Thursday, March 15, 7pm–8pm — Canterbury Place’s McVey Auditorium, 310 Fisk Street, Lawrenceville — Lawrenceville Historical Society will host Sandra Baker, of the Senator John Heinz History Center, who will speak on the topic: Taming the Tomato, The History of the H. J. Heinz Company. Free and open to the public.

Thursday, March 22, 6:30pm-8:30pm — Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh Main Lecture Hall, Oakland — Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh Annual Meeting. Free and open to the public.

If you know of any community-oriented events in your District 7 neighborhood that we should publicize through our monthly newsletter and District 7 website, please email Jennifer Thoma by the 1st of each month.


Attention: Port Authority Comment Deadline Approaching

If you are unhappy about proposed transit cuts in the East End and throughout the city,  now is the time to let the Port Authority know. The Port Authority Board will vote on the cuts on April 27, but the public comment period ends March 9. To make your voice heard, send written comments to Port Authority, Fare & Service Proposals, Heinz 57 Center, 345, Sixth Avenue, Floor 3, Pittsburgh, PA 15222-2527. You can also visit their online comment page. To learn more about their current funding crisis, please go to 2012 Proposed Service Reduction Information.

City Council District 7 Newsletter – February 2012


Announcing the New District 7 Website

With the assistance of our City’s excellent webmaster David P., District 7 has just completed the content of their new website which was launched January 31, 2012. Within it you will find up-to-date stories and links to media articles about the District and initiatives promoted by Councilman Dowd. You can also find media releases, upcoming events, District 7 projects, contacts for community groups and city offices, and reports that impact our neighborhoods.

Please take the time to peruse the new site, which is part of an ongoing effort to update all of the City’s web pages. Our new address is

We have also taken this opportunity to feature photos unique to our neighborhoods and submitted to us from around the District. If you are a shutterbug and would like to see your work online, please submit your own photos for posting to  All photos will be credited to the photographer.

2012 and 2013 County Property Reassessments – Update

An improved website for 2013 court-ordered reassessment values for the City of Pittsburgh and Mt. Oliver is now available. The site includes full information on each property, including general information, building information, images of the property, and comparables used to set the value. It is accessible from Allegheny County’s website.

A court order handed down on January 12, 2012, ensures that your current base-year value will be used to calculate your county, municipal and school district real estate taxes for 2012. It is the value listed under “CURRENT” on the notice you received in the mail. You may also view this value by searching for your property on the Allegheny County Real Estate website. The new assessment values will not be used until 2013.

Should you have any further questions regarding your 2012 or 2013 assessment, please go to the County’s FAQ. There you will find answers to many common questions as well as how and why to schedule informal or formal reviews of your case if you disagree with either assessment value.

Fundraising for Bernard Dog Run in Full Swing with Lawrenceville Gourmet Spaghetti Dinner

The Lawrenceville Gourmet Spaghetti Dinner, founded by the Boys of Lawrenceville in 2004, marks its return on Friday, March 2, 2012 at the Teamster’s Temple in Lawrenceville. This event will benefit the Bernard Dog Run community initiative, aimed at building an off-leash dog park for the residents of Lawrenceville.

The Bernard Dog Run initiative started in 2008 with the mission of establishing a community-based, off-leash dog park that is well-maintained, safe and enjoyable for the dogs and dog owners of Pittsburgh’s Lawrenceville neighborhood. The initiative, supported by Lawrenceville United, District 7 Councilman Patrick Dowd and the City of Pittsburgh, is continuing its momentum as all clearances and approvals have been secured; now, raising funds to cover construction and maintenance costs remains as the final step in launching this much-needed community asset.

The off-leash exercise area will be named in honor of the late Jay Bernard, a Lawrenceville resident, businessman and abandoned dog advocate. Mr. Bernard pioneered neighborhood involvement in Lawrenceville, serving as a catalyst for community activities including Art All Night, the Joy of Cookies Tour and the Lawrenceville House Tour. He founded The Boys of Lawrenceville, a benevolent organization of gay men in Lawrenceville, and created its Gourmet Spaghetti Dinner fund-raiser to benefit local families and organizations.

February 20th-25th Marks the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh Customer Appreciation Days

Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh customers will now have greater access to programs, materials and facilities. Beginning Monday, February 20, most Pittsburgh library locations will have expanded hours, opening more evenings, after school and weekends for customer use. In total, library customers will gain an additional 119 hours per week, with all neighborhood libraries open for service Mondays and Fridays. Hours at CLP – Main in Oakland, CLP – Downtown & Business and the Library for the Blind & Physically Handicapped will remain unchanged.  The new hours are in direct response to feedback from customers who were previously affected by cuts in library service due to budget constraints and shortfalls.

To celebrate the restoration of hours, several Friends of the Library groups will host Customer Appreciation Open Houses at their respective neighborhood libraries during the week of February 20.  For event details and to locate hours of operation for all Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh locations please visit members Patrick Dowd, Bruce Kraus and Natalia Rudiak will soon sponsor a proclamation in honor of the restoration of services at the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh.


Council to Go

Join Councilman Patrick Dowd at Council to Go, his mobile district office, to voice your concerns, ideas, and questions about local government and services.

Lawrenceville — Friday, February 17, 7:30am-9am — Perk Me Up, 4407 Butler Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15201

Bloomfield — Tuesday, February 21, 7pm-8pm — Big Idea Bookstore, 4812 Liberty Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15224

Morningside — Thursday, February 23, 7pm-8pm — St. Raphael’s Multi-Purpose Room, 1118 Chislett Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15206

Community Events

Friday, February 3 – Penn Avenue Arts Initiative Unblurred – 4800-5500 Penn Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15206. 6pm-11pm. Walkable gallery and venue tour featuring artists and performers along the way. FREE to the public.

Saturday, February 4 – Night at the Races – St. Mary’s Lyceum, 330 45th Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15201, Lawrenceville. 7pm-10:30pm. $10 entry fee benefits Lawrenceville’s 68th annual Fourth of July Fireworks Celebration.

Tuesday, February 14 – 100.7 STAR and the City of Pittsburgh present Valentines on Ice – Schenley Park Skating Rink, Overlook Drive. 7pm–10pm. $4 per couple includes a rose to the first 200 couples compliments of Alex’s Flowers in Oakland; assorted chocolates to first 200 couples courtesy of Betsy Ann Chocolates; mini-massage compliments of Massage Envy of Squirrel Hill; free dance lessons courtesy of Jeff & Colleen Shirey of Salsa Pittsburgh; chance to compete in “Go for the Heart” puck shooting contest; free slice of pizza compliments of Lucci’s Pizza in Squirrel Hill; and a keepsake photo with your sweetheart.

Tuesday, February 14 – Zone 5 Citizen’s Public Safety Council – Union Project, Stanton and Negley Avenues, Pittsburgh, PA  15206 (please use side entrance on Stanton). 7pm. The primary purpose of the Zone 5 Public Safety Council is to enhance the quality of life within the geographic area covered by the Zone 5 Bureau of Police and associated public safety personnel.

February 20-25 – Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh Customer Appreciation Days – Check out their website for specific events at the libraries in East Liberty and Lawrenceville.

Friday, March 2 – Lawrenceville Gourmet Spaghetti Dinner – Teamster’s Temple, 4701 Butler Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15201. 4:30pm-9:30pm. $11 advance ticket price; $13 at the door. Children under 10 FREE. To benefit Lawrenceville’s Bernard Dog Run.

If you know of any community-oriented events in your District 7 neighborhood that we should publicize through our monthly newsletter and District 7 website, please email Jennifer Thoma by the 1st of each month.


Attention: Women of District 7

During February, many of us celebrate romantic affairs of the heart— with our spouse, partner, children, family and friends. But this February, District 7 asks that you also love yourself by considering the physical affairs of your heart. Heart disease kills more women than all forms of cancer combined. This means women — mothers, sisters and friends — are dying at the rate of one per minute. Unfortunately, this killer isn’t easy to see. Heart disease is often silent, hidden and misunderstood.  But you can do something to make a difference.

February 3 marks National Wear Red Day sponsored by the American Heart Association in partnership with Macy’s and Merck. This event is part of the Go Red for Women Campaign, a social initiative designed to empower women to take charge of their heart health. For every free Valentine heart sent from Macy’s Facebook page through Feb. 14, Macy’s will donate $2 – up to $250,000 – to help fight heart disease in women.

Know the risks for heart disease and take action to reduce personal risk by visiting your doctor regularly and by learning more at the American Heart Association website.

For information on District 7 concerns, contact:  Jennifer Thoma, Administrative and Communications Director
at 412-255-2140 or Email