Friends of the Zeiss                                     Statement Before

P.O. Box 1041                                                            Pittsburgh City Council:

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15230-1041 U.S.A.                    2003 July 29

Telephone: 412-561-7876

Electronic Mail: < >

Internet Web Site: < >


Good morning, I am Glenn A. Walsh of 633 Royce Avenue, Mount Lebanon. I am Project Director of Friends of the Zeiss.


Should Pittsburgh City Council pass, finally with no amendments, Bill 2003-2095 today, valuable City property will be given to the Pittsburgh Children’s Museum with no compensation coming to the City of Pittsburgh. Should the Children’s Museum choose to sell the Old Allegheny Post Office and “Nightlight Building” in the future, perhaps to move to a larger facility, the City of Pittsburgh will have nothing to say about this sale, and the City will receive no compensation for the valuable land sold, that had been donated to the Children’s Museum.


Such an action taken today by this Council would be very short-sighted. It would restrict the flexibility of future City Councils to have a say in what happens to this property in the future. This would not be in the best interests of the taxpayers of the City of Pittsburgh.


As I said last week, the City land received by the Children’s Museum, immediately following the vacation of a portion of the old street last year, more than compensates the Children’s Museum for the miniscule amount of land the Children’s Museum is now providing the City, for the new street. The overwhelming majority of land being used for the new street, is, and always has been, City property. Hence, it is not true that the Children’s Museum is not receiving value for this condemnation. The Children’s Museum has ALREADY received valuable City land for the land they are now donating to the City!


Again, we ask that you add an amendment to Bill 2003-2095 which states that the land being conveyed to the Children’s Museum would revert back to the ownership of the City of Pittsburgh, if any of the following should occur:
1)       If the property is no longer being used for charitable purposes;
2)       If the property is vacated or abandoned;
3)       If there is any attempt to sell, lease, or otherwise convey or transfer the “Nightlight Building” to another entity.
Such an amendment, to Bill 2003-2095 should not affect the ability of the Children’s Museum to obtain financing for their proposed building project. However, such an amendment would protect the legitimate interests of the taxpayers of the City of Pittsburgh.
Thank you.