Landmarks Housing Resource Center
The Housing Resource Center is an integral part of the Pittsburgh History & Landmarks Foundation’s restoration projects in Wilkinsburg and older historic neighborhoods. Located at 744 Rebecca Ave., in the shadow of the expansive Crescent apartment building—itself undergoing renovation—what was once an auto repair shop and luxury car showroom in years past was yet another empty and tattered building when PHLF acquired it in 2006.
With funding from the Allegheny Foundation, Hillman Foundation, and Fifth Third Bank, PHLF converted it into a state-of-the-art meeting space with a conference room, an expansive hall equipped with a computer hookup and video/ projection screen and a demonstration room.
Since its October 2010 opening, the Housing Resource Center has grown into a fulcrum of community engagement hosting a series of meetings and workshops that touched on crime and violence awareness, home maintenance and weatherization, urban gardening and a serial arts and crafts program for Wilkinsburg youths and their parents.
(Scroll through the photo gallery below for a look at some of the seminars, workshops and community meetings we have hosted at the LHRC since its opening.)
Perhaps the most important aspect of the Housing Resource Center is the fact that it stands as a complement not only to what PHLF has already done in Wilkinsburg to jumpstart community reinvestment— in the borough’s neighborhoods and business district — but also PHLF’s ongoing projects.
Over the next year or so, the foundation is investing nearly $12 million in the renovation of Crescent Apartments building at 738 Rebecca Ave, the Wilson house at 506-508 Jeanette St, and phase two of the Hamnett Place Housing Restoration Program.
Abandoned years ago, the crescent-shaped apartment building is currently being gutted and will be fully restored to house 23 units. The mix of one, two, and three-bedroom apartments will have a cap on rental rates and will be within range for low to moderate-income renters. The Wilson building will have four such units.
In addition, the second phase of the Hamnett Place restoration will see the renovation of three houses— 517 Jeanette St., 833 and 845 Holland Ave— all of which are single-family houses that will be sold at or below 120 percent of the area’s median income.