Carrie Furnace could go from industrial site to film studio
The massive remnants of Carrie Furnace loom over the Mon Valley like a rusting sentinel of a bygone age, when Pittsburgh really was “The Steel City” because it made more steel than just about anywhere else in the world.
In the intervening years since the mill’s closure, it’s been a National Historic Landmark, a movie set, a gigantic venue for music festivals and an utterly distinctive tourist attraction. Now, it’s getting ready for yet another role — home to new 21st-century jobs and businesses.
After investing about $35 million to prepare the heavily polluted, inaccessible site for new development since 2005, the Redevelopment Authority of Allegheny County is partnering with the Regional Industrial Development Corporation (RIDC) — the local nonprofit developer that has the most experience in turning decaying Pittsburgh-area industrial sites into thriving, productive business hubs that are relevant to current economic needs.\
Carrie Furnace’s property is so vast that it spans the boroughs of Munhall, Rankin, Swissvale and Whitaker. It includes 52 acres of developable land — the giant landmark former steel mill will remain — with another 11 acres to the west available for future phases of the project.
Plans are still being finalized, but one possibility is a project with the Pittsburgh Film Office to build The Film Furnace, a studio campus with sound stages and everything needed to grow Pittsburgh’s status as a center for film and TV production.
Other uses for Carrie Furnace include space for tech, research and development, biotech, workforce education, light manufacturing and assembly.
By: Michael Machosky