A few months ago I wrote a review on PNC Park for another site. As much as I enjoy having easily accessible MLBs available, I had to choose a little in the neighborhood.
There are restaurants and bars, but it’s a fairly compact area, so there aren’t many, and even then, the restaurants are geared more towards drinkers than eaters. … it’s a fun place to hang out both before and after games, but it could use a bit more restaurant variety if you put your heart on something other than standard dishes.
That state of affairs can change when a Columbus-based commercial real estate developer has their way. Michael Machosky of NEXTpittsburgh reports that Continental Real Estate Companies are planning to build an “entertainment space” next to a six-story building that will house apartments and retailers in the current parking lots next to PNC Park. The company will present its plans to the Pittsburgh City Planning Commission next Tuesday (November 9th).
From the article:
In the preliminary renders for the new location, the wall of the parking garage opposite the square is emblazoned with the decommissioned numbers of the pirate legends (and Jackie Robinson’s ubiquitous 42). Underneath is a sign that reads “Pirates Plaza Cinema Series” and indicates at least one idea about how the space can be used.
The square will feature a performance stage, a wooden pergola with tables, and a central grass public meeting room with a huge golden “P” -shaped seating structure in the middle. The grass is framed by tree-lined paths with three different brushed concrete surfaces.
These are not Continental’s first plans to develop the PNC area. A few years ago it proposed a mixed-use complex and square that the city essentially abandoned for reasons of development.
It’s not that PNC doesn’t have an outdoor scene or places to get more than a hot dog or a beer. Saturday games this summer were celebrated with block parties on Sixth Street next to Clemente Bridge, and there are good bars and restaurants. Unlike Cleveland, however, it could use a little more.
With many Pittsburgh visitors coming to the North Shore, be it for a Bucs game, a concert on Stage AE, or whatever is going on at Heinz Field, it makes sense that there should be more to do than there a parking lot to look left over from the Three Rivers Stadium.