November 2017 Update 2

Roadway is Not Needed or Wanted

Pittsburgh City Council
Public Comments
November 29, 2017

By Carlino Giampolo

I am here because the city of Pittsburgh, in collusion with CMU, Pitt, and the foundation owners of the old Almono site in Hazelwood, is once again attempting to build a roadway through the neighborhoods of Four Mile Run and Panther Hollow.

It is well-documented that the city’s first attempt to do so resulted in protests at CMU, Heinz Hall, and Benedum Center, and was brought to the attention of the district attorney and other entities outside of the city. During that period, although the reasons are unknown, the city lost the Smart City Challenge, and the president of CMU resigned in a shroud of mystery.

The ill-advised decision of city leaders to once again attempt to build a roadway through these two neighborhoods may place them on a path of selfsabotage in their efforts to make the city the site of Amazon’s second headquarters.

We strongly recommend the city to indefinitely suspend any plans for a roadway. The mayor has in his possession a petition signed by 462 powerful individuals who are adamantly opposed to this roadway, and who have emphatically stated that this roadway is not needed or wanted. The opposition to the roadway now will be in greater numbers, and extend to more venues.

Three minutes is not enough time to detail all that needs to be said, but let me highlight a few key points. In the bigger picture, we are faced with this issue because of the uncontrolled growth of Pitt and CMU that has devastated the residential and business districts of Oakland, and, like a cancer, the effects of that uncontrolled growth have now spread to the communities of Four Mile Run and Panther Hollow.

Communities get destroyed when good people choose to do nothing. These good people may also be referred to as enablers – individuals who are well aware of the injustice but remain silent anyway. They include the thousands of faculty members of these universities, the media, and this council. We are asking this council to break its silence, and form an alliance with our two communities to put an end to any plans of a roadway through our two neighborhoods.

We are also asking the same of Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald whose mother-in-law was born and raised in Panther Hollow. On November 1, in a television interview with KDKA, he referred to the Kaufman building downtown. He said, “Moving into the future while still preserving the past. That’s who we are in Pittsburgh.” Belief precedes experience and we ask that he extend his belief about buildings to also include neighborhoods.

The leadership of Pittsburgh will not be remembered by how many thousands of robots are manufactured at the old Almono site in Hazelwood. Rather, the leadership will be remembered more fondly if they make human dignity their highest priority.

Robots never have, and never will be, made in the image and likeness of our Divine Creator.