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Discussion on the Allegheny Commons Master Plan 2018 Update

Submitted by Tim Zinn

The Housing and Planning Committee has identified several areas of concern in the 2018 Allegheny Commons Master Plan. Although this topic has been discussed at past general membership meetings, the committee would like to revisit these concerns at the October 9th meeting in order to form a consensus opinion for submission to the Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy. The committee has identified the following concerns with the current master planning document:

West Commons and the Grove

  • The introduction of a “water feature” in the historic location of the West Commons fountain — we continue to advocate that the original fountain be restored. We will not support a wet play area, splash pool, or bog area.
  • Family sized shelter to be constructed in place of center tennis court.
  • Expansion of the play area–we agree that the existing play area is in need of drainage improvements.
  • Introduction of meadow plantings that will diminish the lawn feature of the park, which has been, since its inception, an important character-defining feature of the commons.

North West Commons and Lake Elizabeth

  • Additions of plantings inside the border of Lake Elizabeth
  • Lowering of water level of Lake Elizabeth
  • Storm water management of street water runoff discharging into the park including into Lake Elizabeth.
  • Construction of new Lake Elizabeth pavilion at the south corner of the lake with amenities such as a cafe. There should be no destination restaurants in the park. If a pavilion is to be constructed, it should be in the historic location of the Lake Elizabeth boathouse, which was between Lake Elizabeth and the Aviary, and should be a faithful reconstruction of that building.
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