By Jon Delano

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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Business is booming in Pittsburgh, and Wednesday, the city celebrated two new developments putting down roots.

“We keep moving ahead and inventing and developing and innovating new things, whether its autonomous vehicles or robotics or medical technology,” said Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald.

Kicking off the morning on Pittsburgh’s North Side, a big partnership going on at “Nova Place,” an urban redevelopment project inside the old Allegheny Center building.

Colab 18 will offer North Side nonprofits, businesses, groups, and organizations a place to meet.

“They came together with this vision on putting in a space, a problem-solving space for the community, so we can talk about transportation issues and technology and how do we get that into disadvantaged communities,” noted Juan Garrett, executive director of the Riverside Center for Innovation.

Colab 18 is named for the 18 neighborhoods that make up Pittsburgh’s North Side.

The space will have high-speed internet, tablets, work tables and meeting rooms, and it will give groups the ability to provide business training and youth groups a space to focus on teaching coding and programming.

“It’s an amazing thing for me today, because I actually have four ribbon cuttings or groundbreakings in one day. That’s what Pittsburgh has become right now,” said Fitzgerald.

Then, it was over to the Strip District where some exciting work is going on to bring new life to the robotics row along Smallman Street.

Back hoes were in place for a groundbreaking ceremony for a new office building called District 15.

“What we are trying to do is to create a facility where companies can recruit and retain the top work force,” said John Deklewa, the CEO of RDC Design+Build. “That gives them an edge in their business, and we are happy to be part of that.”

The building will include a fitness center, bike storage, car charging stations, and an outdoor patio space with two public plazas.

Deklewa says this is an exciting time to be developing in Pittsburgh and is working to bring together the old and the new.

“The Strip District has really been an incredible place, one of the top tourist destinations, didn’t want to lose sight of that, honor the tradition of the Strip District,” he said.

District 15 will take about 10 months to build and should have tenants by December.

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