Pittsburgh is the second largest city in Pennsylvania with nearly three million people. This industrial giant is known by many as Steel City. What few know is that it is also known as the City of Bridges; Pittsburgh, with its 446 bridges, holds the world record for bridges. The history of Pittsburgh is almost as colorful as its promising future as a city of industry and innovation.
Housing is always a tricky business. In some places, it's better to rent to own than to buy outright, while in some places it's better to find houses to rent and never buy. The best way to determine the right situation for you is to arm yourself with as much information as possible. In Pittsburgh, the average listing price is $237,489 with the median home sale price coming in at $145,000. The number of home sales is 1,852. slightly more than half the population -- 51.35% -- owns their home, while the rest rent. Of those that rent, the apartment vacancy rate is around 15.97%.
Sports fans have plenty to love about Pittsburgh. Three professional sports teams -- Pittsburgh Pirates (baseball), Pittsburgh Steelers (football) and Pittsburgh Penguins (hockey) -- call Pittsburgh home. All three share the city's official colors of black and gold. In addition, there are several semi-professional and amateur sports teams that are based in the city, including:
At the college level, the University of Pittsburgh and Duquesne both have football teams while Robert Morris University has hockey. If basketball is more your game, The University of Pittsburgh, Duquesne and Robert Morris University all have Division I teams. Golf also has a proud history and is represented well in this city with several outstanding golf courses including the prestigious Foxburg Country Club. Foxburg has the distinction of being the oldest golf course in continuous use in the nation.
The problem with tourists attractions in Pittsburgh is that there are so many to choose from! The National Aviary has over 600 of the most beautiful birds in the world. Not interested in birds? How about the Carnegie Museums of Art and Natural History? If history isn't your interest, maybe you are looking for a thrill? Take a trip on one of the inclines to the top of Mt. Washington. That should take your breath away! Try taking the trip twice, once during the day and once at night. The view of the city after dark is absolutely magical. If none of that entices you, then take a stroll on The Strip and visit a massive shopping gallery. If you happen to be a fan of comics and cartoons, you might want to stop in at the The ToonSeum, Pittsburghs Museum of Comic and Cartoon Art. Here you will find a history of the medium as well as hands-on workshops and exhibitions of original art.
With almost 100 neighborhoods, Pittsburgh is sure to have the perfect community for every new resident. Here are just a few of the most notable and well-known neighborhoods.
Downtown: Also known as the Golden Triangle because it is bounded by the rivers Allegheny and Monongahela, and the Central Business District because of the sheer amount of businesses located here. The urban area is an affluent community of mostly renters in both apartments and homes.
Shadyside: Densely urban, rental and home costs in this community are modest for the city, while still being higher than most places throughout the state. Most of the renter-occupied homes and apartments were built before 1940, making the area one of Pittsburgh's most historic. Stroll down Walnut Street to shop at major retailers and dine at local restaurants.
Oakland: Located just three miles east of Downtown, Oakland is the city's academic and cultural center with many of the museums and universities located here, making the area popular with renters and college students. It's home to the sprawling collection of Carnegie buildings, which include the Museum of Natural History, Museum of Art and the Carnegie Music Hall. Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood was taped in Oakland in the studios of the city's PBS station (and the first in the US), WQED.
South Side Flats: Right across the river from Carnegie Mellon University, South Side Flats is home to a majority of the city's nightlife and bars. It also has one of Pittsburgh's highest concentration of 19th century homes, which are mostly occupied at a reasonable rate by renters.
Squirrel Hill: You can feel like you're living on Main Street USA in Squirrel Hill, which has a nice mixture of renters and owners. Finding a rental home shouldn't be too difficult in this community. Many nonprofits are headquartered in Squirrel Hill including the Children's Institute of Pittsburgh and the Jewish Community Center of Pittsburgh. Schenley and Frick parks and the Chatham University Arboretum contributed to the neighborhood's small-town feel.
Allentown: Billy Joel might have made the steel-mill community famous in his song of the same name, but today the area is a mostly-residential area and is a mix of owners and renters. The neighborhood is described by locals as a "close-knit, family-oriented" community, although the vacancy rate is a high 29%.
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