Success of Strip District properties spawns ideas to add residential projects
By Sam Spatter
Published: Sunday, Dec. 1, 2013, 9:40 p.m.
The Strip District's two successful apartment developments — the 298-unit Cork Factory along Railroad Street and nearby 96-unit Lot 24 — are luring developers to work on at least three more.
They are encouraged by the 100 percent occupancy of the apartments; both have waiting lists.
Those successes during the past decade led Oxford Development Co. to plan Three Crossings, with 299 apartments, on the site of the Pitt-Ohio Express truck terminal on Railroad Street, between 26th and 27th streets. When the company moves to its Harmar facility in summer, the terminal can be demolished, said Chick Hammel, its president.
Hammel has encouraged residential construction in the Strip. He and Dan McCaffrey, of McCaffrey Interests of Chicago, and Bob Beynon of Beynon & Co., Downtown, turned the deteriorated Armstrong Cork factory into the complex. He and McCaffrey built Lot 24 as its continuation.
“When I bought the Armstrong Cork facility, I never considered turning it into apartments. But my partners convinced me that it would work, and it has,” he said.
The full occupancy helped Sampson-Morris Group of Monroeville discard plans to turn the New Federal Cold Storage building along Smallman Street into condominiums, offices, a hotel or a parking garage. Instead, the company plans a 144-unit apartment building.
Brian Schreiber expects to begin construction March 1 on 59 apartments on property he owns at Smallman and 11th streets.
Another development that could bring up to 750 units is part of Buncher Co.'s $450 million Riverfront Landing complex, between 11th and 21st streets, along the Allegheny River, the company has said.
Becky Rodgers, president of Neighbors In The Strip, a community organization, isn't surprised that developers are planning apartments there. It's easy to walk the neighborhood, and there's strong wholesale and retail activity.
“We are a vibrant neighborhood, one that is strategically located, close to Downtown, with easy access to the area from all sections of the region,” she said. “We have the Heinz History Center, along with the Pittsburgh Opera and Pittsburgh Ballet, both of which often provide weekend events that attract visitors.”
The $40 million Oxford project — apartments with one to three bedrooms — will include 186 interior and 84 off-site parking spaces, records show. There will be a courtyard with a swimming pool, fire pits and bocce, said Shawn Fox, director of business development. Tenants can walk the trail along the Allegheny River, he said.
“Oxford likes the multi-family market in Pittsburgh, and particularly the Strip District, where tenants can access the Strip's wholesale food and retail market and be close to Downtown,” he said.
The complex will be five stories, with the integral parking level half-underground, said Ben Kelley, Oxford's development manager.
“It will be the first project in Allegheny County's Green Boulevard Plan, and be Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certified,” he said.
Sam Spatter is a Trib Total Media staff writer. Reach him at 412-320-7843 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.
- South Fayette parents express dissatisfaction with handling of bullying
- Legal experts question prosecuting South Fayette boy for recording bullies
- South Fayette mother wants case against bullied son to be dropped
- For undercover officer who tried to nab Lawrence County flasher, work can be ‘drag’
- Leader guided changes at Robert Morris
- Methane emission levels by shale natural gas drillers disputed by EPA, researchers
- Defense experts tell of disease they say claimed 4-month-old from Castle Shannon whose father is charged with homicide
- Leader guided changes at Robert Morris
- Moon school hiring under fire
- Comedian Gallagher gets his money from North Versailles promoter
- Newsmaker: Dr. Jan Janecka