How bad is it that the presidents/CEO’s of 147 major American companies has to call the government on the line to enact common sense gun control legislation?  And major corporations taking the initiative to do sensible things like Walmart discontinuing to sell ammunition and Dicks no long selling certain guns?   Granted I do not answer to a corporate board (other than JR and Rayezette-who are basically rubber stamps for my initiatives).  I’m going to go out on a limb here, I don’t think there should be any assault style weapons in America that are not securely stored in a military type complex.  If you need an AK47 to shoot a deer, you shouldn’t be in possession of any kind of a fire arm.  If you want to boycott me  because of my view, please don’t book here in the future.  Besides the national polls showing 90% of Americans support common sense gun control laws and others I’ve read where taking a stand will generally give a very small set back for a company. Dicks saw that after they first tried doing the right thing with gun control voluntarily and there sales has actually gone up.

Pittsburgh received a Callery pear tree seedling viewed as survivor tree after being discovered still alive after the 9/11 trade center attacks.They brushed the poor thing off and nursed it back to health and have since been giving these saplings to placed that have experienced terror kind of attacks as we did at the Tree of Live Synagogue in Squirrel hill.  I’m assuming it will be planted somewhere around Tree of Life Synagogue.

I was born and raised until 6th grade at the end of Baldwin Borough right on top of the hill over Hays.  There was this wooded area from up on the other side of Glass Run Road, as a kid we would climb over the top passed abandoned strip mines and once on the top with a view of the city and the Monongahela River.  This area is referred to as Hays Woods.  The city bought the 600+ acres for $5M from some developer when he couldn’t get a casino license or mining license from the state for the land.  The city is considering setting some of it aside for some upscale housing development to recoup some of the $5M.  I can tell you from personal experience the entire edge of the property from the top of the hill down to the rail road tracks between Becks Run Road and Hays could never be developed, it’s as steep as the hill from Mt Washington to Station Square.  I was coming home from my parents house in Finleyville one night to my first house on South Side Slopes when I saw the fabled albino buck that lived in those woods.  He had gotten down the hill, across the tracks on to Carson.  He was spectacular!

The new owner of the old Wholey’s cold storage facility with the Icon smiling fish was sold to a developer who is considering building a office building possibly  at tall as 16 stories.  The new office building has a significant presence of Face book in it.  A lot of the old warehouses are currently being converted into office space and some residential.  The one story building on would you like a virtual tour of The Parador?  Follow this link if you do.

Also, big construction plans down in Chateau, the area on the Northside adjacent to tho Ohio River behind the casino.  Millcraft on a major development that will include a marina, lagoon and Ferris While like Navy Pier in Chicago.  Here’s a pic of an artist’s rendering of what it will look like:

New Chateau development

Millcraft in case you don’t know is the group that redeveloped the old Lazarus department store into high end condo’s and retail/restaurants on the first floor.  They also did the hotel/offices/retail/restaurants behind Market Square (the Hilton Garden Square), and are currently redeveloping that old NY lady’s clothing store on Smithfield Street.  Restaurants/retail first floor, parking first and upper floors and condos on the top (I think they bottom is pretty much complete and they are starting on the condos.

Besides being a slacker these days with my blog, I’ve been avoiding politics, but again I have to complain about our mayor, even though I like Mayor Peduto a lot and support a lot of his initiatives, he (like me) has faults that need addressed.  First of all I support building the city for the next 20-40 years and that time cars should pretty much be a thing of the past.  Although it’s a PIA for traveling and parking in the city, I like the foresight of creating bike lanes, expanded sidewalks removing parking spaces to do this and other initiatives.  He needs to stay here and slow down his globe trotting and take care of several things.  My biggest gripe is housing.  There are so many vacant/abandoned houses in the city (read not property tax paying) that are also detracting from the neighborhoods.  Now that city employee that sold himself a house in Beechview for $2,500 and I’m not talking about corruption and things like that, but the system in place is totally broken.  There are so many properties the city owns that could be turned into affordable housing if the city set up a workable program to do this. If he Mayor Peduto spent more time in the city maybe he could focus on this and clean it up.  My other gripe today is trash, he seems obsessive about reducing cost keeping the city clean.  He’s opting for a new state of the art trash cans that talk to a computer and tell Public Works it needs emptied.  I walk da kidz every day twice and am obsessive about picking up plastic and Styrofoam to keep it out of the oceans.  It’s getting harder and harder to find trash cans.  There used to be 10 – 20 on Western Avenue through the Commons Park, now there’s 2.  I’m almost to the point of carrying a plastic bag with me to handle all the trash when I leave the business district of Western.  Another PIA is the lady in charge of Recycling and they have set up glass only containers at the city recycle centers.  Though a PIA I know glass pollutes other recyclables and will modify my collection habits.

Oh and by the way Arlen of City Books and myself received a Humanitarian Award for our food drive that raised over 500 pounds of food in the business district this past summer from the Northside Common Ministries:

Humanitarian Awards

Well kidz that’s it for today, have a great one and we’ll talk again soon,





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