Pittsburgh URA nears consultant deal to analyze Produce Terminal options
The city's Urban Redevelopment Authority is close to finalizing a deal with a North Side consultant to evaluate alternatives to demolishing part of the Strip District's Produce Terminal, officials said Tuesday.
The URA plans to vote Thursday to hire Fourth Economy Consulting to study proposals from developers, including at least two in Pennsylvania and others from Ohio and Texas, said Timothy McNulty, spokesman for Mayor Bill Peduto.
The authority would pay the consultant up to $35,000 for the work.
“It is not uncommon for the authority to engage third-party consultants to evaluate economic impacts, financial viability and market feasibility on major projects,” URA acting Director Robert Rubinstein said.
“Of course the URA has its own experts, but the mayor would like a neutral third party that can give another set of eyes to the building and its needs,” McNulty said.
Peduto reached a deal last month to get the Buncher Co. to halt its development plans for the Produce Terminal for six months so other proposals can be investigated. Buncher has a $1.8 million option to buy the former food distribution hub from the URA, which owns the building.
Buncher planned to tear down a third of the 1,500-foot-long building so it could extend 17th Street to riverfront property it owns. It would renovate the rest of the terminal. Peduto expressed concerns about the demolition plans, proposing ideas such as cutting several “pass-throughs” in the building instead.
Buncher is planning more than $450 million in riverfront development. Thomas J. Balestrieri, Buncher's president and CEO, has said work will continue during the six-month standstill, including construction of a road to run roughly parallel with Smallman Street behind the Produce Terminal.
Fourth Economy, founded in 2010, has done work for the URA before. In 2012, the URA awarded the firm a $9,000 contract to study the potential impact of the $104 million Gardens at Market Square development, Downtown.
Tom Fontaine is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-320-7847 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Crews battling Oakmont church blaze
- Bloodhound team searching for former athletic director, Greensburg official
- Botched FBI raid in Bellevue stings feds for $100K
- Judge denies request to lift gag order in Ford case
- Judge lifts order blocking racy state emails
- Crosby limited in early return to Penguins training camp
- Rossi: The series that will define these Pirates
- Steelers’ Timmons looks to reverse defense’s struggles
- Latrobe group cancels raffle, seeks ticket holders for refunds
- Penguins’ new 3rd jersey similar to early 1990s version
- Police investigate armed robberies in Lawrenceville