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Station Square

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Pittsburgh and Lake Erie Railroad Terminal
1901, William George Burns; 1976 renovation, Landmarks Design Associates. Bounded by the Smithfield St. Bridge, W. Carson St., and the Monongahela River
  • Station Square the former Pittsburgh & Lake Erie Railroad complex seen from the Smithfield Street Bridge. (Pittsburgh History & Landmarks Foundation)
  • Pittsburgh & Lake Erie Railroad Terminal passenger waiting room restored for the Grand Concourse restaurant. (Jim Judkis for Pittsburgh History & Landmarks Foundation)
  • Former Pittsburgh & Lake Erie Railroad Terminal. (Pittsburgh History & Landmarks Foundation)

This forty-acre rehabilitation of Beaux-Arts and industrial buildings constituted Pittsburgh's first recycling of an integrated complex of buildings. Initiated by the Pittsburgh History and Landmarks Foundation, the renovation and adaptive reuse had a profound effect on the revitalization of the entire South Side.

The centerpiece remains the seven-story former passenger terminal of the P&LE Railroad, which, though it made most of its revenue hauling iron ore and coal, lavished considerable expense on the waiting room. This elaborate space under a barrel-vaulted stained glass skylight was among America's more dramatic railroad station interiors. It was restored in the 1970s for use as a restaurant, which works well in that ceremonial space.

The adjoining office building, freight terminal, and warehouse also found new uses as office and retail space, in the process bringing thousands of suburbanites back into the city for work or entertainment.

Writing Credits

Lu Donnelly et al.



  • 1901

  • 1976


What's Nearby


Lu Donnelly et al., "Station Square", [Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of PA vol 1

Buildings of Pennsylvania: Pittsburgh and Western Pennsylvania, Lu Donnelly, H. David Brumble IV, and Franklin Toker. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2010, 77-77.

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