Pittsburgh Post G-20?

Once a steel-town, always a steel-town? Don't tell that to Barack Obama. Apparently, the president picked the home of Heinz ketchup and the Steelers for the G20 Summit because its mix of green manufacturing, medicine, and top educational institutions is a model for the revival of the American Rustbelt. If you're looking for hot real estate investments, you could do worse than buying or renting in Pittsburgh. (This 1 BR Victorian Pittsburgh goes for just $650-not too shabby.) RS asked property manager Holly Rubinoff of Pittsburgh's Franklin West to give us the lowdown on what's melting the Big P's steel these days.

Poppin' Pittsburgh, Pa.
  • Population: 370,000 in the city, 1.3M in the greater Pittsburgh area
  • Average Rental Prices: 1-bedroom, $850-$1200
  • Hot Neighborhood: Shadyside, a Victorian townhouse neighborhood with tree-lined streets just outside the college neighborhood of Oakland
  • Who Lives There: A mix of professionals working downtown, grad students from the University of Pittsburgh and Carnegie Mellon, and residents at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center
  • Hot Restaurant:Red Room Cafe, a leather-chair filled lounge with rooftop deck
  • Hot Shopping District: Walnut Street for shopping and Ellsworth Avenue for art galleries, also Bakery Square, the massive, old Nabisco plant being turned into a retail destination
  • Hot Shop: The Little Black Dress
  • Hot Spot: East End, Highland Avenue area, also Walnut Street, Ellsworth Avenue
  • Hangout: Coffee Tree Roasters, Walnut Street or The Crazy Mocha on Ellsworth Avenue
  • Up & Coming:: South Side and Lawrenceville, where a new children's hospital recently opened

Locals' Take

What Do You Do For Fun Around Here?
"There's all sorts of bike and running trails," says Rubinoff. "When our weather is nice we take advantage of that because we have such crummy winters."

How's the Commute? "We have a lot of tenants who don't have cars they rely on the Port Authority [buses] or bike routes. trails," she says, "Biking is very big here."

What's New? "They're renovating Point State Park downtown. It's right at the point where all three rivers meet. They're reconfiguring it to make it more runner friendly. That's where they do the NFL kick-off opening night. Black-Eyed Peas just played there."

What do you like about Pittsburgh?
"I've lived here my whole life. The cost of living and home value is fantastic. I think that we have a lot [of jobs] to offer with technology and with the hospitals. It's a very friendly, convenient town."

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