Pittsburgh's only operational dairy is now the center of redevelopment in Carrick.
Community leaders launched the new Dairy District effort—a planning and design initiative—on Monday at Colteryahn Dairy
, where they hope the corridor can be transformed into a destination with quality retail, dining and office space. The dairy, founded in 1893, is located at 1801 Brownsville Road.
The dairy is partnering in this effort with Economic Development South
(EDS), a non-profit community development corporation that works across municipal lines and whose focus is on corridor-based development. EDS serves the Boroughs of Brentwood, Whitehall and Baldwin and the City of Pittsburgh neighborhoods of Carrick and Overbrook.
EDS Executive Director Greg Jones envisions ice cream shops, restaurants and other complimentary businesses opening in historic storefronts surrounding the dairy.
"We're trying to create more of a regional destination along a stretch of Brownsville Road that hasn't had investment in quite a number of years," Jones says.
The effort is funded in part by a $50,000 grant from the Pittsburgh Neighborhood Renaissance Fund (NRF). NRF is a program that provides community groups with resources to create a development vision plan, and was created by Mayor Luke Ravenstahl, the Urban Redevelopment Authority and the Design Center. Councilwoman Natalia Rudiak has given additional funds to the Carrick Community Council for the project.
Desmone & Associates Architects
has been hired to design streetscape improvements and to develop a vision for revitalizing existing storefronts through a community planning process.
According to Rudiak, depending on the outcome of the design process, Colteryahn Dairy is prepared to invest private funds in future improvements to the streetscape. She says a highlight of the process would be to reopen the former Colteryahn Dairy storefront to sell ice cream and other products.
"It doesn’t have to be complicated," Rudiak says. "Sometimes all you need is a new coat of paint and a new sidewalk, and something can look brand new. But we are looking for something different, something creative."
In 1998, Colteryahn Dairy invested in a $5 million upgrade to their plant in Carrick. Though there were once numerous dairies throughout Pittsburgh, Colteryahn's is the last operational facility within city limits.
The Dairy District Project is a joint initiative of Economic Development South (EDS), the Carrick Community Council and the Colteryahn Dairy management team. It is one of several studies and ongoing redevelopment projects currently targeting the several-miles-long Brownsville Road corridor.
Writer: Andrew Moore
Source: Councilwoman Natalia Rudiak; Greg Jones