without exception the blackest place which I ever saw.É
As regards scenery, it is beautifully situated, being
just at the juncture of the two rivers, Monongahela and
Allegheny... Nothing can be more picturesque than the
site.... Even the filth and wondrous blackness of the
place are picturesque when looked down upon from above....
Anthony Trollope, 1860
the land shaped us: mountains impeded travel and
rivers eased it. Then we shaped the land: leveling mountains,
filling valleys with new transportation and construction
technologies. Our current challenge is making peace
with our environment.
studies, geography, earth science, environment, math, technology
levels: Adaptable 3-12 grades
our neighborhoods and city, it is hard to imagine what the land looked
like without all those houses and shopping malls, without the highways
and side streets, without the bridges which cross the region's rivers
We have become
so accustomed to the way the city has shaped the landscape that one
could easily forget, once upon a time, that it was the other way around:
The landscape created the shape of the city.
the landscape still does. Although it may be less overt than in the
days of pioneers, Western Pennsylvania's hills, valleys, and waterways
determine where we live, how we travel, and the ways we work.
is a city so defined by its natural features that many local businesses,
charities, and professional organizations bear the name "Three
Rivers." Think of Three Rivers Stadium, the Three Rivers Regatta,
the Three Rivers Shakespeare Festival, and companies such as Three Rivers
Fencing. It is a fitting tribute to the dramatically beautiful geography
of Western Pennsylvania, shaped by the forces of nature over hundreds
of thousands of years.
our green hills and blue skies can also help remind us that one Pittsburgh
tradition we can't afford to keep alive is the disregard of the health
of our air, water, and land. Today's economic growth doesn't have to
be at the expense of or environment.