Allegheny County Comprehensive Plan

For you planning geeks out there, here are some links of interest:

Allegheny Places: The Allegheny County Comprehensive Plan. It's a work in progress.

The most recent issue of Pittsburgh Economic Quarterly, a publication of UCSUR -- Pitt's University Center for Social and Urban Research. This edition of PEQ features an excerpt from "Allegheny County Economic Trends," a research report prepared as part of the Comprehensive Plan.

The PEQ site is here.

[Update posted 1/20: I corrected this post to read "Allegheny County," not "Allegheny Conference" as I wrote originally. Where is Dr. Freud when you need him?]


3 Responses to "Allegheny County Comprehensive Plan"

Bram Reichbaum said... 1/24/2007 9:52 PM

Thanks for all this. I just hacked through much of the trends report. I have two questions you may be able to shed light on.

"For over 30 years, Allegheny County has lost ground in personal income growth in comparison
to the Pittsburgh region, Pennsylvania and the nation. Population losses in Allegheny County
have exacerbated wage trends leading to Allegheny County lagging the region, state and nation
in terms of personal income growth in almost every decade since 1970. Only in the 1980’s did
Allegheny County’s personal income growth exceed that of the Pittsburgh MSA, reflecting the
depth of the recession in the suburban counties of the region. When adjusted for population
levels, Allegheny County’s per capita income levels fare much better. Allegheny County
maintains a concentration of relatively well paying jobs and a relatively low poverty rate which
contribute to it having higher per capita income levels than the region, state or nation."

I don't know if I understand this. Does this mean the middle class got squeezed here, moreso than elsewhere? Does it mean that as most of the unemployed fled the region entirely, more of the African-Americans stayed put, putting a special burden on our county?

Also: the bit about our electricity infrastructure struck me. Because of historic disadvantages that are not being redressed, are we essentially paying MORE than most for our energy, AND at the same time IMPORTING more of it? Should we be upset at Duquesne Light for giving us the short end of both sticks?

Anonymous said... 1/29/2007 9:14 AM

I was curious about a statistic as well. There is a quote in the text saying that Pittsburgh's economy in the sixties had a structure that did favor entrepreneurship. Has that changed substantively since? How does the level of entrepreneurship in Pittsburgh compare with the rest of the country?

C. Briem said... 1/30/2007 9:23 PM

"had a structure that did favor entrepreneurship"

I don't think it says that. can you give a cite. The history is that even in the 60's is when you get Ben Chinitz talking about how the industry structure here inhibited new company formation.

on the earlier comment.. Almost too much to address here. The electricity cost disadvantage of the region has come down just as the legacy cost of past infrastructure overbuilding has diminished...

on the rest.. always keep in mind whether the discussion is about the region or the county.. or the city in some cases. Lots of stuff going in that play into income trends over the long run here.

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Pittsblog 2.0 is written by Mike Madison, a law professor at the University of Pittsburgh. Send email to michael.j.madison[at] Mike also blogs at, on law and technology. Chris Briem of Null Space drops by from time to time.

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