Councilman Patrick Dowd — July 2010 newsletter

Office of Councilman Patrick Dowd — July 2010

News and Updates

Councilman Patrick Dowd will host a community meeting on Thursday, July 1, 7pm at the Union Project, regarding the proposed creation of a greenway running through portions of Stanton Heights and Morningside. The hillsides, which are some of the City of Pittsburgh’s greatest assets, provide a beautiful “wall of green” for residents and visitors to enjoy. Other significant benefits to creating an urban greenway include passive recreation opportunities, storm water management, and stabilizing or increasing property values. Please consider attending this meeting in support of this important opportunity for the Stanton Heights and Morningside neighborhoods.

The historic designation of the Iron City Brewery in the City’s Lawrenceville and Polish Hill neighborhoods was passed unanimously and with excitement in City Council on June 29. “This site, just from a location standpoint, is extremely attractive and I would argue it is the most important next generation development site in the city of Pittsburgh,” Councilman Dowd said recently. A master planning process has begun incorporating all stakeholders. Stay tuned for more details.

Councilman Patrick Dowd, accompanied by Councilman Daniel Lavelle, council staff and environmental organization representatives, was given an overview of the Marcellus Shale sites of Hickory Township in Washington County, PA, this past Monday. The Councilman has recently introduced legislation utilizing zoning regulations to ensure that any drilling operation will be controlled as to offer reasonable protection to neighborhoods and citizens.

The Leslie Park Pool in Lawrenceville will be brimming with activity this summer, and none of it includes swimming. The once dormant pool is becoming a hot spot in the community as a recreational and party space worthy of the spotlight. The work done up until now by a dedicated group of volunteers led by Susan Englert and Deborah Knox has become a three event series called Deep Summer, which includes the following events: Spillapalooza, July 10 12:30-7 p.m.; Deepend, July 24 6 p.m.-dusk; Deep Sky, July 25 8-11 p.m.

Upcoming Events

Council to Go

Thursday, June 15: From 6:30 to 8:00 pm, Councilman Dowd and staff will be in Polish Hill at Lili Cafe, 3138 Dobson Street.

Thursday, July 22: From 6:30 to 8:00pm, Councilman Dowd and staff will be at Highland Park’s Tazza D’Oro, 1125 North Highland Avenue.

Community Events

Thursday, July 1, 7pm: Stanton Heights/Morningside Greenway Meeting at the Union Project, 801 North Negley Avenue, Highland Park.

Saturday, July 3, 12noon – 10pm: Lawrenceville’s Independence Day Celebration, Arsenal Park.

Saturday, July 17, 10am-12noon. Carnegie Library Community Meeting, Stephen Foster Community Center, 286 Main Street in Lawrenceville.

Thursday, July 22, 6:30pm: Zone 2 Public Safety Meeting, Hill House, 1835 Centre Avenue, Hill District.

Did You Know?

Hydraulic fracturing —fracking— is a means of natural gas extraction employed in Marcellus Shale—deep natural gas—well drilling. Once a well is drilled, millions of gallons of water, sand and proprietary chemicals are injected, under high pressure, into a well. The pressure fractures the shale and props open fissures that enable natural gas to flow more freely out of the well.

The average Marcellus Shale natural gas well is up to 8,000 feet deep. The depth of drinking water aquifers is about 1,000 feet. When problems arise, they may stem from poor cement well casings that leak natural gas and fracking fluid into water wells. Generally 1-8 million gallons of water may be used to frack a well. A well may be fracked up to 18 times. For each frack, 80-300 tons of chemicals may be used.

Presently, the natural gas industry does not have to disclose the chemicals used, but scientists have identified volatile organic compounds (VOCs) such as benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene and xylene. You can find out more about this issue at You can find specific information about PA state regulations on the PA Dept. of Environmental Protection Oil & Gas Management Program webpage.