The Lower Hill District, before and after the Civic Arena

The fate of the Civic Arena continues to be a contentious issue, due in part to the devastating effect the facility’s construction had on the Lower Hill District neighborhood.  A recent feature on The Pittsburgh Post Gazette‘s website overlays a present day image of the Arena with an image of the neighborhood from the 1950s, illustrating just how drastically the project altered the surrounding landscape.

The Lower Hill District circa 1956

The historic image is from the Allegheny Conference on Community Development Photographs, a collection that offers rich documentation of the city’s Renaissance I & II redevelopment efforts.  The collection also contains images of the construction of Point State Park, Gateway Center, and the Pittsburgh International Airport.


About Matthew Strauss

Chief Archivist at the Senator John Heinz History Center in Pittsburgh, Pa.
This entry was posted in Digital Collections and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to The Lower Hill District, before and after the Civic Arena

  1. Pingback: Construction of the Civic Arena | Heinz History Center Library and Archives

  2. Tom says:

    It was a very difficult time for the ethnic groups to be driven from their homes. Many of them (my Italian family) reluctantly had to move into different areas. They lost their Church (St Peter of Fernando Street), their close knit community, friends and family members that they arrived from Italy with, and like the other immigrants, a loss of their identity and comfort/security. No doubt, the other ethnic groups (Jewish, Greek, and Syrian/Lebanese) also had the same feelings.
    Very good article. You need to interview the elders of that time who are still alive. It would be a great story.

  3. Pingback: Pittsburgh: Progress and Potholes | The Metro Stories

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