before the Glenn
Council of P.O. Box
The City of Pittsburgh,
Carnegie Library’s Electronic Mail: < firstname.lastname@example.org
Site: < http://www.andrewcarnegie.cc
Good morning. I am Glenn A.
Walsh of 633 Royce Avenue, Mt. Lebanon.
Today I am speaking as a private citizen representing no organization.
On December 27, the 134th
Pittsburgh City Council approved the sale of land, to Carnegie Library, which
will permit the abandonment of the historic Allegheny Regional Branch of The
Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh. This will have significant and negative financial
ramifications for the City of Pittsburgh.
In 1994, when The Carnegie
Science Center abandoned the original Buhl Planetarium building, for nearly ten
years the City of Pittsburgh had to maintain a “mothballed”
historic building in the core of the historic Allegheny
City business district, now known as Allegheny Center. Likewise, in 2004, when Carnegie
Library abandoned the historic Hazelwood Library building, since that time the
City of Pittsburgh has had to maintain a “mothballed” historic building only a
block from the Second Avenue business district.
Once a new library building
is finished and occupied on Federal
Street, Carnegie Library will completely abandon
the original Allegheny Regional Branch. Their primary reason for downsizing
library services on the North Side is to save money. Hence, they will not continue
to maintain two library buildings on the Lower North Side, just as The Carnegie
Science Center refused to continue to maintain two science museum buildings on
the Lower North Side. The older books on the second floor of the Allegheny
Regional Branch will be moved back to Oakland,
and the building will be turned-back to the City of Pittsburgh.
So, the City of Pittsburgh will have to
maintain a second mothballed library branch for an indefinite period of time.
But, unlike the Buhl Planetarium and Hazelwood Library examples, the Allegheny
Regional Library can only be partially mothballed.
Unlike Buhl and the Hazelwood
Library, the water pipes of the Allegheny Regional Library cannot be winterized
because two other tenants of the building, the New Hazlett Theater and the Senior Citizen
Center, require water
service. Consequently, heat in the Allegheny Regional Branch section of the
building can not be reduced much below +55 degrees Fahrenheit, lest water pipes
near the exterior walls risk being frozen and possible bursting. Particularly
considering the size of the Allegheny Regional Library building, which is
larger than both Buhl and the Hazelwood Library, this will add significant additional
costs to the City of Pittsburgh,
for maintaining the Allegheny Regional Library building.
I would ask that the 135th
Pittsburgh City Council reevaluate the advisability of allowing Carnegie
Library to abandon the Allegheny Regional Library building.