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The Development Review Panel (“DRP”) is an 11-member body of residents appointed by organizations that represent social, faith-based, educational, cultural and residential communities within the Hill District. The main function of the DRP is to review proposals for new development, and provide feedback and recommendations for improvement. The goal is to facilitate development in alignment with the Greater Hill District Master Plan (GHDMP) by establishing a working mutual relationship between developers and the community. Receiving a letter of support from the DRP requires a cumulative score of 80% or higher.

In 2018, the DRP approved six development projects and declined two proposals.


Approved Development Projects

New Granada Square

The New Granada Square development project features 48 units of mixed-income rental housing, approximately 49,000 square feet of commercial and retail space, and the restoration of the historic New Granada Theater. This proposal was submitted to the DRP in September 2017. The project was approved with a score of 89% in February 2018.

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Wylie Bistro

The Wylie Bistro development project strives to be an anchor in the Centre of Culture by providing 2 mixed income housing opportunities and a commercial space to be utilized by Hill District restaurateur, Chef Claudy Pierre. This proposal was submitted to the DRP in February 2018, and was approved, with a score of 94%, in April 2018.  Both of the 2 rental units are finished and occupied.

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MOKA Art Gallery

The MOKA Art Gallery development project will be a 4,400 square foot communal space that will feature an art gallery and gathering space on the first floor, a visual arts and education studio on the second floor, a residence for visiting artists on the third floor, and Hill District residents and owners, Mbutu and Charlotte, will occupy the fourth floor. This project was submitted to the DRP in February 2018, and was approved in April 2018 with a score of 93%.

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Middle Hill Scattered Sites Townhomes

The Middle Hill Scattered Sites development project proposed 22 affordable, new construction townhome units throughout the Middle Hill in partnership between Amani Christian Community Development Corporation, Macedonia Development Corporation, Bridging the Gap Development, LLC, and the Housing Authority City of Pittsburgh (HACP).  All units will be available for lease-purchase.  This project was submitted to the DRP in April 2018. It was approved with a score of 82% in July 2018.

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Centre Avenue YMCA

The Centre Avenue YMCA development project is a renovation of the existing historic YMCA used as 77 single room occupancy (SRO) housing units. This renovation features a conversion of group bathrooms to individual ones, air conditioning, replacement of finishes, improvement of energy efficiency, and an elevator. The Centre Ave YMCA proposal was submitted to the DRP in June 2018, and was approved in October 2018 with a score of 89%.

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Western Restoration

The Western Restoration development project proposal is a repurposing of the former Tuberculosis Hospital buildings into a senior rental housing development. This rental housing will be comprised of 24 one bedroom apartments, all affordable at 60% of area median income, 10 of which will be fully accessible. This renovation will also include upgrading of common areas including parking lots and sidewalks, common area lighting, apartment kitchens and bathrooms, and a senior day center.  The project has since been expanded to include upgrades to units at both Western Manor and Milliones Manor.  This project was submitted to the DRP in March 2018, and was approved in October 2018 with a score of 91%.

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Declined Projects

43 Vine Street

The 43 Vine Street development project aimed to repurpose a former church to serve as a private parking facility for a business located in Uptown. The project was submitted in March 2018, and was presented to the DRP in April 2018.  The project was found to not sufficiently align with the Greater Hill District Master Plan (GHDMP) and scored only a 51%. The DRP offered to work alongside the developer towards better alignment, but the developer declined.

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Healthy Ride Bike Share Expansion

The Healthy Ride Bike Share Expansion project proposed the expansion of the Bike Share program to add 5-8 new locations throughout the Middle Hill. Because the project was a development activity rather than a traditional development project, it was exempt from presenting to the DRP and went directly before the community in April 2018 at which time the project scored a  63%.  Healthy Rides then tabled at the next community meeting in July of 2018, and presented again at a community meeting in October of 2018.  At that meeting the project scored a 75%, was declined by the DRP, and sent a letter of non-support.

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