PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Despite the tragedy of last Monday, local residents know that Hazelwood is a whole lot more than police tape, shootings and death.

“If you’ve been reading the news lately, it’s been a tough week for Hazelwood,” said Councilman Corey O’Connor who represents the area on Pittsburgh City Council.

O’Connor said Hazelwood has been waiting 20 years for its break, and additional funding for the redevelopment of the 178-acre site of the former LTV J&L steel mill was long overdue.

“It’s great to see the economic development and the jobs that will be coming back to this neighborhood, so that the residents who live here now will continue to live here and see this community develop well into the future,” the councilman added.

On Wednesday, Gov. Tom Corbett pledged $10 million in redevelopment and transportation funds to create a mixed-use site of residential housing for 1,300 people, office space and amenities.

“An investment that will help the city, the county, and this area move forward,” said the governor, “an investment that I believe has the potential to return what was truly a wasteland before it was actually torn down and now is actually a beautiful green area into what will be a prosperous center of commerce and innovation.”

To address residents’ concerns that this “not” be another Waterfront that split the development from the homestead community, the project coordinator, RIDC’s Don Smith said, “We’re going to reconnect every street grid that we can, so we really try to integrate this with the neighborhood. And a lot of the residential development that you will see at the edges will pull Hazelwood into the site and the site into Hazelwood.”

If everything goes according to plan, construction will begin on this site in 2015 and some housing should be completed and ready for residents by 2016.

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