PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — The Pittsburgh Penguins have hoisted the Stanley Cup to the delights of their fans.
But the organization’s lack of progress in redeveloping the old Civic Arena site hasn’t won any prizes with Mayor Bill Peduto, who threatened in May to rescind their rights to the site.
“Well, we’ve been working with them now for two years, and I would have hoped by now to have seen something actually under construction,” said Mayor Peduto.
But, on Wednesday, emerging from an hour and half meeting with the mayor, Penguins’ President David Morehouse said plans are on track to fill the site with residence, office and entertainment development.
“We’re still on the same page and we’re moving forward,” said Morehouse. “We have some challenges that we have to get around, but we’re very happy with where we are and we think we’re still on track to accomplished.”
The mayor’s office agrees.
“I think we’re all confident that we have a path to deliver this development in a manner we’ve all been in agreement with for some time,” said Peduto’s Chief-of-Staff Kevin Acklin.
The Pens say they will try to stick to an October deadline to begin the construction of residential units; although, the city and the team are still talking about subsidizing affordable units which are part of the agreement with the hill district community.
“It’s always been our intention that we recapture and rebuild and reconnect their neighborhood to downtown. That’s still the core reason why this is a top development project of Mayor Peduto,” said Acklin.
Morehouse says the Pens are also talking to three companies about locating their headquarters on the site.
“It’s going to be one of the best developments in the city,” said Morehouse. “It’s 28 acres of prime land, adjacent to the Central Business District. It’s going to bring a lot of tax revenue to the region; it’s going to create jobs.”