Statement before the                Glenn A. Walsh

     Council of the                             P.O. Box 1041

  City of Pittsburgh:                  Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15230-1041 U.S.A.

      Expansion of             Telephone: 412-561-7876

   Dinosaur Hall at          Electronic Mail: < >

 Carnegie Museum          Internet Web Site: < >

                                                                        2005 June 14


Good afternoon. I am Glenn A. Walsh of 633 Royce Avenue, Mt. Lebanon. Today, I am representing no formal organization.


First, I want to thank Councilman Bill Peduto for his efforts to provide for this public hearing as well as to ensure that plans for this expansion were available to the public, at the City Clerk's Office, before the hearing.


I did review the plans last week. From these plans, along with other information on the Carnegie Museum web site, it seems like a very good project that will maintain Carnegie Museum's reputation for one of the best dinosaur exhibits in the world!


Now, I had several questions (attached to this statement), which  I had  e-mailed to Craig Dunham of Carnegie Museum. He replied that he would prefer to answer the questions at the public hearing. I certainly understand that Mr. Dunham is busy with his job. However, it makes no sense to make architectural drawings available ahead of time, which few average citizens can understand, then decline to answer questions ahead of time. How, then, can the average citizen intelligently comment on the project at a public hearing?


A better strategy would have been to have Carnegie Museum provide a special public session as the Port Authority often does, perhaps in the Carnegie Lecture Hall, where drawings could have been viewed by the public and questions answered by Carnegie officials. Then, once the public hearing date arrives, the public would be able to discuss the project intelligently. City Council and The Carnegie should implement such a strategy for future projects.


Although I see no real problems with this plan, what would happen if information was revealed at this public hearing that City Council did have problems with? With the passage of Bill 1367 on May 31, Carnegie Museum would have no obligation to change their plans; they already have the legal right to follow-through with their project as they see fit. This public hearing should have occurred prior to the passage of Bill 1367.


In Bill 1367, it states: “the Museum, acting on behalf of the City, entered the Land and built the Museum Property;…” Yet, the Preamble to the agreement states that the Museum was not legally created until March 2, 1896, nearly four months after the building was completed, dedicated, and donated to the City of Pittsburgh!


Let there be no doubt in anyone’s mind that, as with the neighborhood branch library buildings, the Main Library and Museums building is owned by the City of Pittsburgh—not just the land the building sits upon. At the building dedication on November 5, 1895, Pittsburgh Mayor McKenna stated: “As Chief Magistrate of this, my native city, I am pleased to receive for the people this beautiful building which you, at great expense out of your abundant means, have erected and designated that it shall be "Free to the People."”