Friday, January 16, 2009

South Hills High Transformed

After more than 20 years of standing vacant, the former South Hills High School in Mount Washington will become a senior housing complex.

The Urban Redevelopment Authority agreed to the sale and finance of the building yesterday. URA's Director of Real Estate Kyra Straussman says the structure, which was both large and old, was vacant for such a long time partly because of difficulties in finding a "good fit." There were also difficulties in finding proper funding for the project. Thanks to Senator Wayne Fontana's push and the approval of state housing tax credits, the project is now underway.

Despite the long period of time it went unused, Straussman says "the bones of the building are in pretty good shape." There will be some demolition and reconstruction that takes place, in order to make room for a parking lot and to eliminate unnecessary spaces such as an auditorium, but some areas of the school will be preserved. Straussman says these spots may be recognizable to South Hills High graduates.

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