West View, PA- once home to the Historic West View Amusement Park

This inner ring suburb, is located just north of the City of Pittsburgh. Interestingly, Westview is surrounded by Ross Township and the portion of the Township between West View and Pittsburgh is much newer. The borough likely developed along a streetcar line creating a historic leapfrog development pattern.

West View is similar to other Pittsburgh streetcar suburbs like Dormont, Mt. Lebanon, and Bellevue and has remained a stable and attractive community. The Borough’s population peaked in 1970 with 8,312 residents and now has around 6,500. Young families are attracted to West View due to its strong schools, convenient access to Downtown, and semi-walkability. Perry Hwy contains several in-tact urban commercial blocks, but many other parts of the Borough are pretty auto centric including the West Park Shopping Plaza built in the early 1980s to replace the historic West View Park Amusement Park. Other areas West View can improve include the addition of at least one street with dedicated bike lanes, better cultural amenities and parks, and more shops and occupancy along Perry Highway.  
Click here to view the full Westview album on my Flickr Page

URBAN STRENGTHS:

* Convenient access to dwtn and Oakland via the court. Ok transit access.
* Great generational and economic diversity here.
* Great array of for-sale housing options. Most housing is selling in the 100ks. Good amount. Decent amount of rentals as well medium priced.
* Attractive historic housing. Commercial district architecture is not that interesting.
* Some spots of quality urban business form and streetscaping along Perry and Center Ave.
* Good retail amenities including a supermarket, two drug store, post office, library, and a nice mix of specialty stores and general retail. But a mixed bag of whether stores are located on a walkable main street or strip mall.
* While some blight remains in Westview especially in the commercial corridors, this town has a very low crime rate.
* High quality elementary school located within the borough and is very walkable. Middle and High Schools are just outside of the borough’s border’s but unfortunately accessible on by car.
* High quality tree canopy aided by the hills and valleys of the borough. But a decent amount of street trees as well. 

URBAN WEAKNESSES:

* Sidewalks and ADA infrastructure is pretty good in the main street but hit or miss in the residential areas.
* No bike infrastructure in Westview.
* Very white community near 95%. Limited racial diversity.
* Decent but not great park amenities throughout Westview.
* Cultural amenities are limited to several restaurants and bars. Not much else here.
* In-fill architecture is mostly crummy strip mall buildings. 

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