Protesters Block Intersection In Support Of Displaced Penn Plaza Residents

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – A group of protesters took to the streets to show their support for Penn Plaza tenants facing eviction.

Dozens of people gathered at the intersection of Penn and Centre Avenues in East Liberty Thursday afternoon.

In the middle of the road, protesters set up a “living room” complete with couches and other furniture.

Penn Plaza tenants are facing eviction at the end of the month and some do not have new housing lined up.

“We have until the 31st of March, the 31st of this month to get out, I haven’t found a place yet. There’s a lot of places that don’t take Section 8,” said Myrtle Stern. “I’m 76 years old…I might be homeless by the 31st of the month.”

Many of Penn Plaza’s remaining residents are elderly or in poor health. They’ve lived in East Liberty for their entire lives and they can’t afford the thousands of dollars a month in rent that new luxury apartments are charging.

“Tearing the place down around us,” said Mabel Duffy. “If we stick together in groups, we might make it.”

The protesters are calling on developers to provide long-term affordable housing to those being displaced.

“We’ve been told we can take a voucher and move any place…why can’t we take a voucher and stay here?” one person asked.

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