Home to historic districts, universities, health care facilities, and cultural venues, Pittsburgh's Oakland neighborhood is truly ‘a city within a city'; which made developing a long-term comprehensive plan with the participation of a diverse set of partners all the more difficult.
"It's a monster," said Wanda Wilson, executive director of the Oakland Planning and Development Corp. "I think the thing that's going to help [with implementation] is that we have these partnerships in place -- not that it's going to be a piece of cake."
According to Diana Nelson Jones, "[p]riorities include an Oakland bus loop; better pedestrian navigation and bicycle infrastructure; hillside restoration and other greening efforts; more attractive gateways into Oakland; the return of the Oakland Code Enforcement Task Force -- a resident-based network renamed Oakwatch -- and better town-and-gown relations with outreach and reclamation of student rentals in residential neighborhoods."
"Unlike most neighborhood-specific plans, Oakland's is likely to have regional implications, especially as transportation goals are implemented," says Jones.
"Obviously, as the third-largest employment center in the state, with cultural institutions that serve the region, Oakland has to plan with that in mind," said Jonathan Kline, co-principal at Studio for Spatial Practice. "At the same time, he said, there is a certain parochial feel to each of Oakland's neighborhoods."