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State grants support ballet, transit, Phipps projects

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Grant winners

Gateway Entertainment Studios, 31st Street Studios, $1.5 million

Borough of Millvale, Bennett Station Town Square and the redevelopment of the North Avenue Corridor, $500,000

Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens, Center for Sustainable Landscapes, $1.5 million

Eastside Limited Partnership III, East Liberty Transit Center, $2.5 million

Industrial Scientific Corporation, global headquarters expansion, $1.5 million

Island Studios, Exp. LLC, Island Studios expansion, $2.5 million.

Sports & Exhibition Authority of the City of Pittsburgh, Lower Hill infrastructure, $5 million

Newbury Development Associates, Newbury Market mixed-use development, $4 million

Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre, school expansion, Project III, $1 million

The Program for Offenders Inc., Community Corrections Alternative, $4 million

Westpointe Corporate Four, LP, Westpointe Corporate Center Four, $1.5 million

Aliquippa Tin Mill, LP, Aliquippa Tin Mill redevelopment, $3 million.

GC Industrial Developments Inc., EverGreene Technology Park-Phase III, $1.5 million

Central Allegheny Challenger Learning Center, learning center, $1.365 million

Mon Rivers Partners, LP/Mon River Industrial Group, LLC, Former Wheeling-Pittsburgh Allenport rehabilitation and revitalization, $3 million.

Tri-County Patriots for Independent Living, YWCA rehabilitation project, $1.5 million

Westmoreland Museum of American Art, museum expansion, $1 million

Source: Office of the Governor

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By Bill Zlatos
Monday, Dec. 23, 2013, 6:51 p.m.

More dance space for budding ballerinas at the Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre and extra room to prepare plants at Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens are among 17 causes receiving state grants, Gov. Tom Corbett announced on Monday.

The efforts are among 58 receiving more than $133 million in Economic Growth Initiative grants. The projects, chosen on the basis of their job-creating potential, economic impact and readiness to start construction, range from $500,000 to $5 million.

The Ballet Theatre received $1 million to help build a 17,000-square-foot annex with three dance studios next to its headquarters in the Strip District. Executive Director Harris Ferris said the expansion would allow the ballet to increase the number of students it serves from 1,000 to 1,600 over three years.

“We're not only training dancers but building future dancers and ballet enthusiasts,” Ferris said.

Phipps plans to use its $1.5 million grant to develop its lower campus, which includes the Center for Sustainable Landscapes. The grant will help pay for renovating the old public works building, which will be used for preparing plants for exhibition in the greenhouses.

“It's not all the money we need, but it gives us a good start for finishing this project,” said Richard Piacentini, executive director of Phipps. He said Phipps still needs to raise about $5 million of the $23 million cost for the entire project.

Bill Zlatos is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-320-7828 or

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