What are Everyday Squares? They are 'catalysts that thrum life into neighborhoods every day in small, mainstream ways' as Diana Nelson Jones says in her Walkabout column from Tuesday Jan 15 2013.
There are ten that the Urban Design Associates have identified in Pittsburgh and Öthe Urban Gardener is one of them!!!
(Courtesy of Urban Design Associates)
Recognize us? This makes us look like we even planned it this way!
We love their premise - that the revitalization of a neighborhood may well come in small steps that don't require massive investment, or big box or national retailer dollars. And in fact, these small places often defy the criteria for success that developers of larger commercial projects require, and are what urban planners often overlook.
And yet, these "Everyday Squares" act as catalysts and attractions for other, usually small but often interesting, developments. Thatís actually one of the main reasons we started the Urban Gardener in the first place.
Since we opened here in 1997, we have seen:
The re-purposing of the building across the street from us on Kirkbride Street into an office and meeting space.
The Western PA Conservancy plant a garden at the corner of Brighton and California , which has been expanded and continues to be beautifully planted and maintained.
A new business established on a previously vacant lot across the street from us on Brighton Road.
Another vacant lot on the corner of Brighton, Charles and California transformed into a rain garden and public space.
The shuttered Columbus Middle School reopened as Propel Northside.
A private developer donate dozens of trees that Tree Pittsburgh has planted along California Avenue and Brighton Place.
And the City, Tree Pittsburgh and the Western PA Conservancy plant dozens of trees along Brighton Road, from North Avenue all the way up to the Union Dale Cemetery.
But what we like most about being an Everyday Square is that we are a place that people come to from all over and yet meet and talk - as gardeners will - as if they were neighbors. And we really love it when people unexpectedly run into old friends and acquaintances - it brings a smile to everyone's face.
You may want to visit the other Everyday Squares: Espresso a Mano, Farmers@Firehouse, Frick Park Market, Girasole, Make Your Mark, Village Park at Point Park University, The Porch at Schenley Plaza, Round Corner Cantina, and Tazza D'Oro. We are so pleased to be in such great company.