Learning from our Neighbors: A Recent Trip to Aspinwall – by Jim Anderson

Just got back from Aspinwall. While there we ate at the Aspinwall Grille; great food and adult beverages, nice atmosphere. Next door there’s a bakery, and a number of other businesses. Directly across the street is a metered parking lot. After lunch we drove around the community. We saw many beautiful old homes, well maintained multi-famliy units and quaint brick streets. In general there was a small town feel while still being close to the heart of Pittsburgh. I saw a thriving community with a robust business district. If I squinted just a little bit, this place looked like Bellevue. What I didn’t see was blight, empty store fronts, or vacant/abandoned properties. Are there some ideas that we could borrow from Aspinwall? We obviously can’t keep doing what we’ve always been doing (we’ll just keep on getting what we’ve always been getting). The time for change is coming.


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3 Responses to “Learning from our Neighbors: A Recent Trip to Aspinwall – by Jim Anderson”

  1. Jim, Aspinwall is a very nice community but it is dissimilar to Bellevue in one important aspect. It has a far wealthier citizenry than Bellevue. You could say it is more like a suburb of Fox Chapel. A close example of a town like Bellevue is Verona which has a thriving, diverse business district. They even have a busy farmer’s market in Verona every summer down near the railroad tracks (We had one in Bellevue but it collapsed because it was very poorly managed and council for the most part did not support it).

  2. I HAVE LIVED HERE IN BELLEVUE FOR THE PAST 53 YEARS. MY CHILDREN STILL LIVE IN THE BORO. BELLEVUE MEANS BEAUTIFUL VIEW. IT IS NOT BEAUTIFUL TODAY. TAKE A WALK AROUND AND LOOK AT THE RUN DOWN HOUSE. THE OVER GROWN LAWNS. TAKE A LOOK AT THE BACK OF THE BUILDING WHICH HOUSES THE RUSTY NAIL FOR INSTANCE. THE HEDGES ON THE HOUSE AT 200 TEECE AVE. WHICH NOW ARE SO HIGH THEY ARE BLOCKING THE WIRES. THE HUNDREDS OF WIRES AROUND HOUSE, CABLE WIRES WHICH ARE NOT IN USE BUT NEVER TAKEN DOWN. CABLE WIRES WHICH HANG SO LOW THAT TRUCKS HIT THEM. HOMES WHICH HAVE SO MUCH GARBAGE ON PORCHES. WHERE IS THE CODE OFFICER WHO SHOULD BE ENFORCING LAWS TO HAVE THESE THINGS TAKEN CARE OF. ABOUT THE BUSINESS DISTRICK, MAYBE RENTS ARE TOO HIGH FOR A SMALL BORO. HOW ABOUT THE BUILDING WHICH WAS ONCE THE FIVE AND DIME AND IS NOW SITTING THERE WITH THE TOP FLOORS EMPTY. OLD BUILDINGS TORN DOWN, WE NEED PARKING, WE NEED ANOTHER FOOD SUPERMARKET. WE USED TO HAVE THREE MARKETS NOW WE HAVE ONE. HOW ABOUT MORE HEALTH BUSINESS. LIKE A PLACE WHERE ONE COULD GO AND WORK OUT OR HAVE CLASSES FOR ELDERLY AND YOUNG. YOU REALLY DONT HAVE TO SPEND BIG MONEY FOR AN EXPERT TO TELL YOU WHAT NEEDS TO BE DONE. WE HAVE TALENTED YOUNG PEOPLE WHO COULD DESIGN A NEW LOOK FOR OUR TOWN BUSINESS DISTRICK. WHAT IS WRONG WITH OUR TOWN IS THAT WE HAVE PEOPLE HOLDING MEETINGS AND DOING NOTHING TO FIX IT. PEOPLE PAID TO DO A JOB AND ARE NOT DOING IT. MAYBE WE NEED A WHOLE NEW CHANGE IN WHO RUNS THIS TOWN. I LOVE BELLEVUE AND SHALL BE HERE UNTIL I PASS BUT I SURE HOPE BEFORE I GO I SEE SOMEONE OF OUR MANY YOUNG PEOPLE REALLY SAVING OUR BEAUTIFUL VIEW NAMED BELLEVUE.

  3. Bill, yes Fox Chapel is located near by but so is Etna and Sharpesburg. We also have affluent neighborhoods close by, Ohio Township, Sewickly, Sewickly Heights. Aspinwall has the walking community and similar architecture. When I drive through Aspinwall and visit the excellent restaurants I see what B’vue could become. Is their governing body Fox Chapel? Also, Verona is located next to Oakmont, another affluent community. But the point is, Bellevue is not growing and will decline unless as a community we pull together and act now. Rose is correct change is needed!

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