(PITTSBURGH) September 25, 2012 Mayor Luke Ravenstahl today announced that during its most recent annual conference, the International Downtown Association recognized Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership with a Downtown Merit Award for its work related to Project Pop Up: Downtown.
“Adding to the vibrancy of downtown Pittsburgh has been one of the great successes of the Project Pop-Up: Downtown,” said Mayor Luke Ravenstahl. “I’m happy to congratulate the people whose participation in the project helps to showcase the innovation and entrepreneurial spirit of our City.”
Project Pop Up: Downtown is a program of Mayor Luke Ravenstahl, in conjunction with the Urban Redevelopment Authority, Department of City Planning and Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership and generously funded by The Heinz Endowments, Colcom Foundation and an anonymous donor. Since 2011’s Light Up Night®, Project Pop Up: Downtown has been animating key Downtown vacant or underused storefronts and public spaces, improving the vibrancy, safety and economic health of Downtown.
“Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership’s project received the IDA Merit Award for delivering excellence in downtown management”, said David Downey, IDA President and CEO. “Each year the IDA Awards Jury recognizes organizations that utilize best practices in our industry. Project Pop Up: Downtown is a shining example of excellent downtown management that delivers real results.”
Project Pop Up: Downtown was recognized as part of the Events and Programming category which incorporates organizations working to further their City centers by completing the following:
• Focusing on programs and events that improved the image and vitality of downtown with events that promote downtown and attract visitors.
The launch of the program awarded 11 grants of up to $10,000 to turn vacant spaces into art and/or retail ventures for up to 12 months. "In addition to the grants awarded, the program was contingent upon the generosity of property owners who kindly donated their properties to the program participants for the six to twelve month pop-up term." said Bethany Tucke, Project Pop Up: Downtown, Program Director. Original program participants included Awesome Books, an independent book store; Dream Cream, an ice-cream shop that helps fund dreams of local residents; Boutique 208, a craft and artist co-op; and interactive installations, including Robot Repairs and Main Feature.
Since its inception, Project Pop Up: Downtown has also produced unique events including Project Pop Up: Bocce, a one-night-only bocce court, Project Pop-Up: Urban Forest where residents and visitors were able to escape the busy streets of Pittsburgh into an oasis of relaxation to sit amongst a variety of trees, and most recently, Project Pop Up: Night Market which transforms a Downtown parking lot into a marketplace featuring Pittsburgh’s most creative and independent vendors, artists and chefs. Guests are encouraged to stroll, eat and shop throughout the collection of vendors.
About the Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership
Office of Mayor Luke Ravenstahl
512 City County Building | 414 Grant Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15219
telephone: 412-255-2626 | facsimile: 412-255-2687