WattleyEarlier this year I had the opportunity to participate in Leadership Development Initiative XXI (LDI), a program of Leadership Pittsburgh Inc. Because of thisprogram I was able to work alongside 40 emerging leaders in the Pittsburgh region to plan Bright Night: A Larimer Light Festival.  And while learning leadership was the goal, the experience also provided the opportunity to explore Larimer, a great Pittsburgh neighborhood that like many other communities in our region, is currently reinventing itself and preparing for future prosperity.

Located in Pittsburgh’s East End, Larimer is bordered by Highland Park, East Liberty, Homewood, Shadyside, Point Breeze and Lincoln-Lemington-Belmar. The neighborhood recently was selected as a U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Choice Neighborhood Initiative recipient, an award that will invest more than $30 million to revitalize the community. The investment will go towards high-quality mixed-income housing, improving educational/skills attainment, and creating an atmosphere for public and private partnerships. The funding will undoubtedly be a catalyst for additional public and private sector investment.

After DuskThroughout Larimer’s past struggles, its residents were the glue that kept the neighborhood together. It was the residents that galvanized support for the Larimer Plan and it is because of them that Larimer is positioned where it is today.  Furthermore, Larimer already has many existing assets that make it a special place – the Kingsley Association, the Larimer Consensus Group, the Larimer Village Green, the Environment and Energy Community Outreach Center – the changes in Larimer will no doubt be accelerated because of these assets. It is an exciting time to be in the Pittsburgh region, which received more than $2.4 billion in private sector investment last year, but for the region to continue to grow, places like Larimer must continue to revitalize themselves. Luckily, times are changing in Larimer and it is on the cusp of lasting change.

 

 

 

 

 

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