From the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Pittsburgh is cleaning up and renovating a park on the city's North Shore (for those uninitiated with the city, it's where the stadiums are). At the center of the park will be a new, 10-foot statue of Mr. Rogers memorializing the city's favorite neighbor. Here's what it should look like:
One of the great things about Pittsburgh is that there is so damn much to commemorate, celebrate and recognize. Some cities just have sports, others just have arts, still more have nothing at all. But Pittsburgh has it all. To illustrate, take the aforementioned North Shore. In a couple years, you can start at one end of the riverfront at the new slots casino, go to the Carnegie Science Center, see a football game at Heinz Field (where streets surrounding the stadium are named after Art Rooney, the team's founder and legendary owner, and others), catch a baseball game at PNC Park (streets are named after legendary players like Bill Mazeroski), see statues to great Pirates players of yore like Honus Wagner, Roberto Clemente and Willie Stargell, pass by the entryway to the Roberto Clemente Bridge (another photo can be viewed here) on your way to the Andy Warhol Museum (and the adjacent Andy Warhol Bridge), sit with Mr. Rogers' statue, remember fallen veterans at the Korean and Vietnam War memorials, then cross the Rachel Carson Bridge (named after the Pittsburgh-native and marine biologist credited with launching the global environmental movement) into downtown Pittsburgh, all the while enjoying a pretty nice pedestrian walkway along the Ohio and Allegheny rivers.
Remaking the North Shore -- a previously dumpy, gray, concrete wasteland marked by overpasses and Three Rivers Stadium -- into this beautiful microcosm of Pittsburgh's cultural heritage is fantastic. And it's great that this stretch exists in Pittsburgh as a one-stop marker to what Pittsburgh has to offer in terms of sports, culture and the arts. A stretch like the North Shore remade this way can only be a benefit to the city. Tourists can come, walk the North Shore and get the annotated Pittsburgh, and that will hopefully (likely) translate into those people wanting to explore more of the city and them going back home and extolling the virtues of the Steel City.