WILKINSBURG: COMMUNITY FORGE RENOVATION
STATUS: Design Phase
In 2012, Johnston Elementary closed its doors after serving Wilkinsburg for nearly a century. With that closing, the borough lost a valuable resource. Beyond acting as a center for education, Johnston Elementary housed community meetings and political events and was a source of energy for the neighborhood. Community Forge was formed in 2016 with the vision of bringing that energy back. Their goal is to attract mission-driven and socially-conscious businesses, events, and partners into Wilkinsburg. They aim to use proceeds from tenancy to beautify the property, open public recreational spaces, and offer educational programs.
Community Forge would like to improve the outdoor space surrounding the former Johnston Elementary building to make it a safer, more usable, and more effective space for the community to use and enjoy. Likely improvements will include reconstruction of the existing retaining walls, resurfacing of the asphalt play area, the construction of a gazebo, and the implementation of a community garden.
EWB-Pittsburgh Professional Chapter is gaining all the necessary approvals through Community Engineering Corps for this local project.
EWB-PPC makes the initial site visit to discuss plans with Community Forge and begin the application process.