Public Statement: Pittsburgh City Council Public Hearing on Future of Allegheny Regional Branch, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh By Steve Pietzak

New Hazlett Theater, Carnegie Hall, Allegheny Square, North Side: December 18, 2007


How the CLP Library Administration could allow a landmark and beautiful library building at the Allegheny Regional Branch, on the North Side, sit empty is a travesty and is dumbfounding? The Allegheny Library, in the Allegheny Center Mall area, was repaired in the Spring 2007 and was ready for operational use, yet library service to the North Side has not been restored for nearly 1 1/2 years?

Andrew Carnegie said "Allegheny was my first love," so the Allegheny Library became the first publicly supported Carnegie library in the U.S. The Allegheny Library was designed by Smithmeyer and Pelz, the architects of the Library of Congress in Washington, DC.

U.S. President Benjamin Harrison dedicated the library in February 1890.
In the heart of the North Side, which was "Old Allegheny City," the Library was always an inviting amenity and was within minutes to most North Siders. Virtually all of the North Side buses pass within 2 blocks of the library.
The Allegheny library's tall steeple had 4 clocks at the top--which was the timepiece of everyone of the North Side city for years. This Library Clock was the "Big Ben" of the North side.

The Allegheny Library could also serve as a "premiere showcase" of our history and our libraries to Pittsburgh visitors, since the Allegheny Library building is within minutes of PNC park, Heinz Field, Andy Warhol Museum, National Aviary, Mattress Factory, Children's Museum, Community College of Allegheny College and the Carnegie Science Center.

Residents and visitors always found the library a pleasant and welcome respite to daily activities as well as augmenting one's education.
Just as PNC Park and Heinz field showcase Pittsburgh of today--
the granite library building could showcase Pittsburgh and Allegheny City with historical pictures, maps, drawings and a state of the art library.

Please reopen the "Old Allegheny" Regional Library and allow the North Siders to have their last piece of Allegheny City -- and allow the Allegheny Library to showcase Pittsburgh and its libraries to the World.

S. Pietzak


Stephen Pietzak

403 Mountain Street

Pittsburgh, PA 15210