PITTSBURGH – March 14, 2023 –Thanks to a generous grant from Duquesne Light Company (DLC), the Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy – in collaboration with the City of Pittsburgh, community organizations, and key partners – will soon begin the next phase of construction on the North Promenade in historic Allegheny Commons Park on the Northside.
The new phase of construction, which will stretch from Federal Street towards the George Washington Monument, is slated to begin this summer and will build on the progress from the first phase completed in 2021.
“Having spaces where community members can safely gather with family and friends is one of the many great amenities that Pittsburgh has to offer,” said Christine Waller, vice president of communications and corporate responsibility at DLC. “Our vision of a clean energy future for all starts with making our region a cleaner, healthier and safer place to live, work and play. We’re honored to continue partnering with Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy in enhancing one of Pittsburgh’s most beloved parks and making it more accessible for all members of the community.”
A longtime partner of the Parks Conservancy, DLC previously contributed to the installation of holiday lighting at Mellon Square Park and the first phase of the Allegheny Commons North Promenade restoration. This contribution will support the next phase of the North Promenade project, which will include improvements such as pathway resurfacing, canopy tree planting, bench installation, new trash receptacles, and mobility and pedestrian upgrades will enhance the experience of park users. In addition, the installation of 16 new historically appropriate light posts featuring energy-efficient and dark sky-compliant lighting and a planted traffic-calming median will promote safety in and around the park.
In addition to the $1M investment from DLC, these upgrades will also be supported by an $800,000 allocation from the City of Pittsburgh Parks Tax Trust Fund directed to the Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy. Catherine Qureshi, president and CEO, Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy, explained the impact of public-private partnerships on creating safer, healthier, and more accessible parks, like Allegheny Commons.
“We are very excited to embark on the next phase of revitalizing the Promenade and are grateful for DLC’s generosity,” Qureshi said. “Our ability to pair their generous gift with Parks Tax Trust Fund dollars is the perfect example of how the Parks Conservancy can unlock private funding that helps to enhance public park improvement projects.”
The rehabilitation project will have a direct impact on the diverse and vibrant Northside communities surrounding the park – all of which are defined by the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) as Environmental Justice Areas – with 20% or more of the population living in poverty and 30% or more identifying as a minority. Community members will enjoy a brighter, safer, and more accessible experience in Pittsburgh’s oldest park, which has been fundamental to the health and well-being of its neighbors since 1789.
Pittsburgh Mayor Ed Gainey further underscored the importance of rehabilitating Allegheny Commons Park.
“When we invest in our city parks, we invest in entire communities," said Gainey. "These critical investments into Allegheny Commons Park will help make the park safe and welcoming for everyone who visits this historic park.”
In addition to the Parks Tax dollars and private funding, this phase of the project has been made possible through a grant from the Commonwealth Financing Authority Greenways, Trails, and Recreation Program (GTRP). The grant was delivered through the critical support of State Senator Wayne Fontana and State Representative Aerion Abney.
"It is wonderful to have Duquesne Light invest $1 million in Allegheny Commons - the city's oldest park and a vital asset to the Northside community,” said Councilman Bobby Wilson. “I am proud to have worked with my colleagues to ensure that Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy secured the necessary funding to complete the North Promenade Project. On behalf of the Northside, we are looking forward to seeing the fruit of these investments in this park."
In 2021, the Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy completed the nearly $1million first phase of the Allegheny Commons North Promenade Project, stretching from the recently rehabilitated Patricia Rooney Memorial Fountain to Federal Street.
To learn more about the second phase of the Allegheny Commons North Promenade project, visit pittsburghparks.org/north-promenade-project.
Contact: Alana Wenk
Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy
About Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy
Recently celebrating its 25th year, the Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy was founded in December 1996 by a group of citizens concerned with the deteriorating conditions of Pittsburgh’s historic city parks. A non-profit organization, the Parks Conservancy works closely with the City of Pittsburgh under an official public-private partnership agreement to restore and improve the city’s park system to its full potential. To date, the Parks Conservancy has raised more than $130 million and completed 22 major park improvement projects. The Parks Conservancy works with thousands of volunteers, hosts hundreds of events, and provides programming for more than 7,500 children annually.
About Duquesne Light Company
Duquesne Light Company (DLC) is committed to more than keeping the lights on; we power the moments in our customers’ lives. As a next-generation energy company based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, DLC’s 1,700-plus employees are dedicated to providing safe, reliable, resilient and affordable power to more than 600,000 customers across southwestern Pennsylvania, including the city of Pittsburgh. To learn more, visit DuquesneLight.com.