806 Western Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15233

PHLF: Today’s Best Perennials for Your Garden

PHLF Resource Center
Join us at the Landmarks Preservation Resource Center for our ongoing programs on house restoration, architecture, history and other aspects of historic preservation, community development, and urban planning.

Location: Landmarks Preservation Resource Center, 744 Rebecca Avenue
Date: Tuesday, March 21st
Time: 6:00 pm – 7:30 pm
Contact: or (412) 471-5808 ext. 527

Perennials are a mainstay of beautiful gardens. They return year after year, bloom reliably, and can offer other benefits, such as nectar and seeds for wildlife. Not all are created equal though. Come learn which perennials are the best ones for area gardens in terms of hardiness, flowering, deer resistance, and other attributes. Some might surprise you! New and improved varieties of old favorites will also be covered.

About the Presenter

Martha Swiss is a garden writer, designer, and speaker. She is a regular contributor to Pennsylvania Gardener magazine and the publications editor for the Pittsburgh Botanic Garden. Her articles have also appeared in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and Fine Gardening. She is a graduate of Chatham University’s landscape design program and a Penn State master gardener.

All lectures are free to PHLF members. Non-members: $10

RSVPs are appreciated: or (412) 471-5808 ext. 527

Check out for more PHLF tours and events.

Heroic Chinese Lawyer to Speak at City of Asylum

City of Asylum (2017)

Presented in partnership with Duquesne University and the World Affairs Council of Pittsburgh

Teng Biao

Tuesday, March 21st
8:00 pm

Teng Biao has been called one of China’s “unstoppable lawyers.” He is a prominent member of the weiquan, or “rights defenders,” movement, a loosely knit coalition of Chinese lawyers and activists who tackle cases related to the environment, religious freedom and freedom of speech and the press.

Teng was also one of the founders of gongmeng, the Open Constitution Initiative in China in 2003. In 2006 he was counsel for the blind activist lawyer Chen Guangcheng (who has presented twice at City of Asylum).

For his activism Teng was banned from teaching, forced out of a job, disbarred from practicing law, jailed and tortured. He is now free, but living in exile in the U.S. as part of Harvard’s Scholars at Risk program. He is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Religious Freedom and Rule of Law Defender Award, the Prize for Outstanding Democracy Activist, the Human Rights Watch Hellman/Hammett Grants, NED Democracy Award and the Human Rights Prize of French Republic.

We are honored to welcome Teng to City of Asylum to share his story with us and to take questions about China.

Reserve Your Free Tickets

Did you know that there is a restaurant in City of Asylum @ Alphabet City? During these events, Alphabet City will be set up so that you can have dinner during the event (or simply order drinks).

Reserve a Table for Your Visit

Speak up for Pittsburgh’s Oldest Park

Allegheny Commons Park Support

Action Alert: Support Pittsburgh’s Oldest Park, Contender for Important State Funding

Dedicated in 1930, Allegheny Commons Park is Pittsburgh’s oldest park. Steeped in history, this beloved Northside park is frequented by local residents as well as visitors to the National Aviary and Children’s Museum.

Right now, you can help Pittsburgh’s oldest park by speaking up for important state funding. Click the button below to find out how.

We’ve requested support for the historically significant Allegheny Commons Park through a competitive state grant. Your could help make the difference in bringing these important funds to Pittsburgh, since community support makes a big impact in this grant process.

Have two minutes? Take action to show your support.

Lend Your Support Now

Please pass this message along to others, and thank you for being a friend of the parks.

Heather Sage
Director of Community Projects

PHLF: Multiple Molding Making Methods

PHLF Resource Center
Join us at the Landmarks Preservation Resource Center for our ongoing programs on house restoration, architecture, history and other aspects of historic preservation, community development, and urban planning.

Location: Landmarks Preservation Resource Center, 744 Rebecca Avenue
Date: Thursday, March 16th
Time: 6:00 pm – 8:30 pm
Contact: or (412) 471-5808 ext. 527

In this workshop, we focus on a demonstration of a few methods for making replacement moldings in older houses.

About the Presenter

Regis Will is a woodworker, craftsman and owner of Vesta Home Services, a consulting firm on house restoration and Do-it-Yourself projects. He blogs about his work at The New Yinzer Workshop.

All lectures are free to PHLF members. Non-members: $10

RSVPs are appreciated: or (412) 471-5808 ext. 527

Check out for more PHLF tours and events.

Letter from the President – March 2017

So what are you doing on Tuesday evening?

You could join (and meet!) your neighbors for a brief gathering, enjoy some light refreshments, learn what’s going on in your community and help steer us on the path forward.

On the second Tuesday of each month, you have the opportunity to learn what’s happening AND to have your voice heard about what we can all be doing to make life here in Allegheny West better in every way. We’re at Calvary Church, on the corner of Beech and Allegheny, at 7:30 pm — use the Beech Avenue entrance. Hope to see you this Tuesday!

On March 31 of 1962, Jane and Ross Johnson sent a letter to a few other property owners in the area of the Northside that we now call Allegheny West. Jane had been born right here in the neighborhood, only a short time after it had ceased to be the City of Allegheny.

She and Ross lived at 934 Western Avenue, and also operated Allegheny Real Estate, on the next block. They were raising their children here, and in the decades to come would sell houses to some of our community’s early pioneer “newcomers”.

Jane especially was able to see this area not for what it was, or even for what it had once been, but for what it could become. She had a talent for imparting that vision to others — including this writer when he bought his first house from her in 1977. She would ultimately remain active in the Allegheny West Civic Council — frequently as a member of the Executive Committee — well into the late 1980s.

When Jane passed away only a few years ago, she had lived to see her neighborhood far surpass anything that she could have imagined. From the perspective of the 21st Century, it was easy to understand that she and all of those who followed had succeeded most in attracting new believers — decade after decade — who would then take up the torch and forge ahead.

But in March of 1962, Jane and Ross wrote to their neighbors:

The lower Northside in the immediate years ahead will undergo a major transformation. But what impact will these major improvements have on our particular area…?

The Lincoln-Beech-West Park section of the Northside has some unusual, if not unique, characteristics. There is its proximity to downtown; its orientation to West Park — the spacious and attractive section of the Commons. Here are some of the best residential structures built in a previous era…many of real period and architectural character.

However, Lincoln-Beech is now a 75-year-old community with some structures that are not just old, but have been neglected and abused and can be regarded as substandard. Regrettably, we have developed a reputation as being a second-rate neighborhood, perhaps a reputation we in part deserve.

Can anything be done to effect a general improvement?

Our purpose in sending this informal letter to about a half-dozen property owners is to ascertain if they would favor that we make an organized effort to improve the area and, if so, would join us and add their signatures to send a similar statement and invitation to a larger representative group pointing toward an organization meeting.

Jane and Ross mailed their letter, and waited to see if anybody would respond to the call.

John DeSantis
President, AWCC

AWCC Membership Meeting Agenda – March 14, 2017

Calvary United Methodist Church, 971 Beech Ave
Tuesday, March 14th at 7:30 pm

  • Visitors
    • Councilwoman Harris’s Office
    • Mayor Peduto’s Office
    • Zone One Police
  • Introduction: Jake Bier, new proprietor of Benjamin’s
  • New Neighbors & Guests
  • Minutes
  • Treasurer’s Report
    • Finance Committee Volunteers Sought
  • Membership
    • Bowling at Elks
    • March Mixer
    • AWCC 55th Anniversary Celebration (May)
  • Ways and Means
    • Wine Tour Update
    • Update on Five Year Plan with Calvary
    • Dates for Other 2017 Events
  • Friends of Allegheny West
    • Green Space
  • Housing and Planning
    • Trucks Through the Neighborhood
    • Stadium Events: Parking and Traffic
    • MCC: Blocks bounded by Western, Allegheny, Ridge, Bridge
    • Western Avenue Revitalization
    • Light of Life: Ridge Avenue Project
    • Film Guidelines
    • Historic District Enforcement Issues
    • Medical Marijuana Dispensary
  • Northside Leadership Conference
  • Other Business

Business Spotlight: Northside Yoga

Submitted by Karen Beer

Northside YogaIn August 2016, Allegheny West welcomed a new yoga studio — Northside Yoga — at 845 Western Avenue. Owners Lyndsey Fullen and Katie Mogilski, both Northside residents, noticed the lack of yoga studios in the neighborhood. They wanted neighbors to be able to practice yoga without having to cross the bridge into Downtown. With help from Diane Mercer of the Northside Community Development Fund, they found a beautiful old building on Western Avenue, the former site of the Used Textbook Warehouse.

Lyndsey and Katie’s mission is to provide fitness-based yoga classes for all levels to the Northside and neighboring area residents. The classes at Northside Yoga include personal attention and aim to empower practitioners to lead happy, healthy, inspired lives. Additionally, Northside Yoga strives to enhance the surrounding community by offering regular karma classes and other events that benefit a Northside area charity.

Class in SessionEvery Sunday at 2:00 pm, Northside Yoga offers a “Karma” Class. The class is donation-based, pay what you can, and all proceeds benefit a local non-profit. So far, Lyndsey and Katie have been able to donate to the Humane Society, Light of Life and City of Asylum. Until April, this class benefits the Northside Food Pantry. They recommend securing a spot online in advance, as the class has been filling up!

For more information and class schedules, please visit, or follow on Facebook and Instagram (@northsideyogapgh).

Remember, if you’re a local business owner and you’d like to tell your business’s story, please send information about your business, its mission, how long you’ve been in Allegheny West, why you chose the neighborhood and any important events or future plans you’d like your neighbors to know about. When space allows, one business per month can be featured in the Gazette. It’s a great way for the neighbors to connect to and support local businesses – and it’s publicity for you. Email information to Karen at Can’t wait to hear from you!

Casting Call for Vintage Homes in the Pittsburgh Area

The DIY Network is calling all homeowners with homes built before 1950. If you have a renovation project in the works, our professional team can help make it happen. We’re searching in the greater Pittsburgh area for couples and families that would like to complete a home renovation project before May or June 2017. Homeowners should already have the possible project mainly financed on their own. DIY Network will bring in experts to help with planning, work and budget. Please email your names, ages, contact info, a brief description of your project and photos of your home’s exterior, interior project and a recent family photo to Interested applicants should respond ASAP.

Allegheny West Wine & Garden Tour 2017


It’s Spanish wines and tapas for this year’s Wine Tour

The dates of the tour will be Friday, June 2nd and Saturday, June 3rd. We are finalizing the list of houses and will announce them soon. There will be properties never before featured on the Wine & Garden Tour. We are looking for volunteers, as well as sponsors. Please email if you’re able to help in either capacity.