I took this picture yesterday on a morning bike ride along the Great Allegheny Passage (GAP) bike trail:
That’s about 20 minutes outside Pittsburgh proper in a town called Braddock, where there is a functioning U.S. Steel factory known as Mon Valley Works. To the right, above the train tracks, is the outline of roller coasters – that’s a theme park called Kennywood.
Here’s a picture of the same spot, taken last summer, when the factory isn’t running:
And one more view – on a different day last summer – where, across the river, you can see a lick of open flame coming out of the top left of the factory:
In Braddock, across from the factory, is a fancy restaurant called Superior Motors. Here’s a picture outside the restaurant:
Pittsburgh’s urban redevelopment began after the steel industry collapsed in the 1970s. Before that, people called Pittsburgh “hell with the lid taken off” or “Smoky City” or “Smoketown”:
It’s amazing how much the city changed in less than 50 years – and amazing that there are places where it hasn’t changed.