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Observatory Hill


Observatory Hill is a neighborhood at the northern edge of Pittsburgh’s North Side, an area that originally was part of the old city of Allegheny, Pennsylvania. The beautiful Allegheny Observatory sits atop one of the hills there in Riverview Park, but the neighborhood includes a variety of great old Pittsburgh homes in many different styles, including a number of huge old mansions along what’s known as “Judges’ Row” on Perrysville Avenue.

As we began to work on this program, we asked Rob Owen, TV Editor of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, if he would mention the upcoming show in his column and invite readers to submit ideas, especially if they loved their own neighborhood and would like to see it included. Maggie Oberst saw the article in the paper and sent an email inviting us to come and check out her beloved neighborhood of Observatory Hill. We went and spent a day there, walking around with Maggie and her son Liam, talking to Tom Snaman who knew some history of Maggie’s house and neighborhood, and we drove into the small “business district” to get a few shots there.

As so often in this show, we found that Pittsburghers can be remarkably proud of the places where they live.

Click on the button to hear Maggie explain some of the joys of the Observatory Hill business district.


It’s a neighborhood with a website.

And it’s obviously a local favorite with neighborhood groups.

And it’s part of Pittsburgh City Council District One (although on the city’s maps, its streets are shown only as parts of Perry North and Summer Hill.

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