PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Luxury class apartments are springing up everywhere you look in Pittsburgh, being built for the young, single and upwardly mobile flocking into the city.
“For me I’ll never move back to the suburbs. I really love the city. I love the convenience we have here,” said Leslie Ogden, who just leased a loft apartment at Bakery Square.
Bakery Square is one of several mammoth apartment buildings under construction. Some 350 units are being built just across the street for Google’s Pittsburgh headquarters in East Liberty.
Just down the street there’s the 360 unit transportation center complex, in Bloomfield the 213 unit Morrow Park Apartments. In the Strip, there’s The Yards, a massive 300 unit complex on the Allegheny riverfront.
In the past three years, building permits show that close to 4,000 new apartments have been built, or are currently under construction, in the city. The construction is being done to accommodate a professional class.
Pittsburgh’s economy is now based on the technology as well as the health care industries: Carnegie Mellon, UPMC and others.
Todd Reidbord of Walnut Capital says his Bakery Square Apartments are more like a hotel providing high services and uncommon living.
Here the tenants can avail themselves of the gym and this lobby which features a ping pong table, swimming pool and communal lounging area for socializing.
“The average person who lives here doesn’t sit in their apartment all night long. They come down here they work out, work on their laptops and communicate with their friends,” Reidbord said.
But it doesn’t come cheap. Rents generally range from $1,500 to as high as $2,500 a month, well out of reach for the middle class and the working poor. This is raising concerns that some people are being priced out of neighborhoods like East Liberty and Lawrenceville, presenting a challenge to city leaders.
” What we’re looking for is balance,” said Kevin Acklin, the Mayor’s Chief of Staff.
In Lawrenceville, they just broke ground on another massive luxury apartment complex called The Foundry at 41st Street, offering the same kind of upscale living at the same kind of rent price.