Thursday, September 21, 2006

Stephen Pietzak's words against the moving of the FIRST Carnegie Library out of its historic home on the North Side

The resident, Stephen P., speaks from experience in a common-sense desire save a historic building's use in a valued spot in the city. City Council could and should move to tell the URA, the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, the world, and the North Side that those acts are not going to occur. And, City Council has the power to prevent such a move from happening.
Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh's Allegheny Regional Library: The Best Site Is Where It’s Located Now

I’m Steve Pietzak, resident of the South Side Slopes. I was main Reference Librarian at Allegheny Regional Library for 13 years.

Why keep Allegheny Regional Library at its present location?

The present location of the Allegheny Regional is in the heart of the North Side. It is easily accessible by most communities to the North, South, East, and West. The Library is the closest large branch to downtown Pittsburgh. The Allegheny Library is on the way to ANY location on the North Side. It HAS LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION!

Allegheny Regional Library is the first PUBLICLY SUPPORTED ANDREW CARNEGIE LIBRARY IN THE U.S. Some visitors to the City of Pittsburgh come to see the start of Andrew Carnegie’s Libraries, with more than 2,600 Libraries given to the World by Andrew Carnegie. Any major city would relish the "Cradle of Andrew Carnegie Public Libraries," and preserve, save and enhance this Library as a "Historical Time Marker."

The Allegheny Regional Library was so important to Carnegie that he invited U.S. President Benjamin Harrison, (along with Senators, Congressmen and the Governor) to come and dedicate the Allegheny Library on February 20, 1890.

The Allegheny Library is a very good and sturdy Library Building. The Library was designed and built by Smithmeyer and Pelz, the architects of the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. If the Allegheny Branch is considered to be a poor design, then we should also consider abandoning the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C., as a poor design.

The $20 Million mentioned as the price of Renovation is a "Rolls Royce" price to pay for renovation. The Carnegie Library Managers should obtain bids from 3 reliable architects to meet the moderate needs of the Library, and not the exquisite ‘Rolls Royce"needs.

Some decisions have to go past the "BUSINESS SENSE," and must take into consideration historical importance, heritage importance, and importance to the community and to the city.

Allegheny Library could be made into a showcase for the City of Pittsburgh. With the New Heinz Field and PNC Park in close proximity to the Allegheny Library—IT MAKES GOOD BUSINESS SENSE AND HISTORICAL SENSE TO TURN THE LIBRARY INTO A SHOWCASE FOR THE CITY OF PITTSBURGH -- To showcase to the World that we care about our History, our Heritage and our Libraries!

The New Proposed Allegheny Library site at 1200 Federal Street will ISOLATE the Library even further than it is now! This new location will NOT BE on the way to anything for most North Siders and it begs SERIOUS SAFETY ISSUES FOR CHILDREN AND YOUNG ADULTS.

The Allegheny Library is the last important historical vestige Of "Old Allegheny City" and Pittsburgh—IT IS IMPORTANT TO CONNECT OUR PAST, WITH OUR PRESENT TO OUR FUTURE!

Let future generations say that this was "OUR FINEST HOUR"—to save the "1st Publicly supported Andrew Carnegie Library in the United States" as a Public Library.


Stephen Pietzak
I agree fully with Stephen. The North Side Library should stay in the building it is in presently. They should do a fix-up of the existing site using insurance money. They should NOT move away from the site. And, the URA should NOT sell land for $1 to the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh for a new location for the North Side Branch.

Glenn A. Walsh presented to City Council too. See and hear his opinions by clicking the YouTube scree below (best viewed at 160x112 resolution).

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