History of the Site
The Almono Site, formerly known as the LTV Steel Hazelwood Works, is one of Pittsburgh's last great brownfields.
A Brief History
Originally purchased in 1758 from Native Americans in the Stanwix Treaty, the site saw little development until 1861, with the first railroad through the area. Shortly thereafter, Jones & Laughlin Steel Company (J&L Company) built their first industrial plants along the Monongahela River in 1883.
With plants along both sides of the River, on the South Side and in Hazelwood, the site became an industrial hub. Further development of the area included important infrastructure investments, such as the construction of the Hot Metal Bridge in 1884 to connect the two plants owned and run by J&L Company. Two key artifacts will be carried forward with the site’s future use and programming: the Roundhouse and the Mill Building, built in 1887 and 1943, respectively. During its peak, J&L had roughly 12,000 workers between their South Side and Hazelwood sites, with the adjacent Hazelwood neighborhood growing to reach a peak population of 13,000 residents in 1960. Following the decline of Pittsburgh’s steel town heyday, Hazelwood Works employed only 3,600 workers when Ling-Temco-Vought Incorporation (LTV) purchased the site in 1974. Despite the sale, the plants closed and ended operations just over two decades later, in 1997, signaling the end of old industry on the site. By 1998, only 6,000 residents remained in Hazelwood.
Evolving from the 1999 Riverlife Task Force vision to create a master plan for Pittsburgh’s urban waterfront, the foundations realized an opportunity to ensure the success and revitalization of a huge portion of the city’s waterfront through the large, vacant brownfield site. In 2002, Almono LP was formed by four Pittsburgh foundations to purchase the Hazelwood site from a bankrupt LTV for $10 million.
Over the years, roughly a dozen studies, neighborhood plans, and vision plans have been developed for the site. In 2013, the City approved the Almono Preliminary Land Development Plan (PLDP). The PLDP was submitted as part of the creation of a Specially Planned (SP) district on the site, and also outlines the process and intention for development, as well as establishes four zoning districts, each with its own mixture of places, uses, and forms. The most recent plan created by Perkins + Will in 2015 builds upon the Rothschild Doyno Vision Plan that was used as the basis for the PLDP.
In late 2016 / early 2017, the Almono project transferred to new management (but not new ownership!). The new Almono Project Team - now led by Rebecca Flora as Almono's Authorized Agent and Project Director - is moving forward with finalizing the Perkins + Will plan for the site. In parallel, the Team is conducting a series of strategies (for sustainability, district energy, public realm, marketing & communications, connectivity) that will better inform solicitations for a development team and an integrated energy service provider in late fall of 2017.