Reimagining a Pittsburgh Neighborhood


mt. oliver city & st. clair

Like the city of Pittsburgh itself, the site of Hilltop Urban Farm has a story – one that is marked by chapters of decline and resurgence. Originally wooded and then cleared during European settlement for land and residences, St Clair, a south Pittsburgh neighborhood, became a part of the City of Pittsburgh in 1923. Families earned their living farming in the tiny neighborhood selling their produce in Pittsburgh’s Strip District, a neighborhood well-known for its abundance of food options including produce, meats and seafood, and ethnic foods. As steel mills shuttered and Pittsburgh’s population declined, the community of St. Clair faced multiple setbacks. Many residents left, farms dried up, and a neighborhood that once boasted apple orchards became known for crime and decay.

The former St Clair Village site. Locations of the housing building that were demolished.

Yet despite these challenges, a commitment to the community has remained intact. Past and current residents share a desire to reinvest in the neighborhood. Put simply, it’s a neighborhood that is ripe with the promise of re-imagination. Hilltop Urban Farm ushers in a new and much-need chapter, one rooted in growth and community advancement.

To get involved with neighborhood projects in St. Clair please contact the Mt. Oliver City/St. Clair Community Group (MOCSCCG), which hosts quarterly public community meetings. MOCSCCG is a Board member organization of the Hilltop Alliance.