Friends of the Zeiss
Electronic Mail: < firstname.lastname@example.org >
Internet Web Site: < http://www.friendsofthezeiss.org >
For immediate release: 2005 July 2
For more information -- Glenn A. Walsh:
Daytime: E-Mail < email@example.com >
Evening: Telephone 412-561-7876
Historic Designation of Buhl Planetarium
of July 13 Public Hearing Before
qualifications to be considered a City-Designated Historic Structure. On behalf of Friends of the Zeiss, the Buhl Planetarium building was nominated for historic designation by City resident Jon Wilson Smith at the beginning of the year.
The public hearing will take place in the City Council
Chamber, on the fifth floor of the
All verbal statements by members of the public will be limited to no more than three minutes at this hearing. Additional printed testimony, of any length, may be submitted at the
time of the verbal testimony. For members of the public who cannot attend the hearing, they may send a short letter supporting the historic designation of Buhl Planetarium to this
e-mail address: < CityhearingBuhl@planetarium.cc >. All such letters will be submitted to City Council at the public hearing.
The Buhl Planetarium and
Ø First planetarium placed on an elevator, to increase flexibility in the Theater of the Stars;
Ø First planetarium theater which included a permanent theatrical stage;
Ø First planetarium theater (and, perhaps, first theater) to install a special sound system specifically for the hearing impaired—remember, this was in 1939 !;
Ø First publicly-owned building in the City (and, possibly, the State) constructed with air-conditioning;
Ø First permanent Siderostat Telescope specifically designed for public use;
Ø First regional Science Fair for school students in the country started at Buhl Planetarium in the Spring of 1940. Only two state-wide science fairs are older than the annual Pittsburgh Regional School Science and Engineering Fair.
News Release: City Council Hearing on Historic Nomination of Buhl Planetarium
2005 July 2 Page 2 of 2
Additionally, for more than 53 years, Buhl Planetarium housed an exhibit that was considered the largest Mercator’s Projection Map in the world! And, the Zeiss II Planetarium
Projector, which operated as the primary educational
instrument of The Buhl Planetarium and
planetarium projector in the world before being dismantled in October of 2002.
Designation as a City-Designated Historic Structure, which was first proposed in 1989 (Buhl Planetarium’s 50th anniversary), would mean that the Buhl Planetarium building cannot be demolished, or the exterior altered, without approval of the Historic Review Commission of Pittsburgh. The Old Allegheny Post Office and the Allegheny Regional Branch of The Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, both beside Buhl Planetarium on the North Side, are already protected by the Historic Review Commission.
Such designation does not protect
the interior of the building, or furnishings, equipment, or artifacts in the
building, nor does any law exist for their protection. Nor does designation
require that the owner or lessee continue operations in the building. The Buhl
Planetarium building is owned by the City of
In the Spring, both the Historic Review Commission and the City Planning Commission, unanimously, recommended that City Council approve Buhl Planetarium as a historic landmark.
In February, both the Pittsburgh
History and Landmarks Foundation and the Children’s
The public can read more about this historic nomination, including viewing the historic nomination application in its entirety, by going to either of these Internet web sites:
The public can obtain more information regarding the public hearing or the historic nomination by electronic mail: < CityhearingBuhl@planetarium.cc > or by telephone: 412-561-7876.
Gene Ricciardi, President of Pittsburgh City Council (who schedules all City Council hearings), chose the perfect day for a Buhl Planetarium hearing. Shortly after the hearing
Created in 2002, Friends of the
Zeiss is a non-profit organization working to preserve the history and heritage
of the building, equipment, and artifacts of
Glenn A. Walsh
Electronic Mail - < firstname.lastname@example.org >
Internet, World Wide Web Sites -
History of The Buhl Planetarium and Institute of Popular Science,
History of The Adler Planetarium and
, Astronomy Museum : Chicago
History of Astronomer and Optician John A. Brashear:
History of Andrew Carnegie and Carnegie Libraries:
The Duquesne Incline, historic cable car railway,