Pittsburgh Perry South Neighborhood Featured Image

#32 Perry South Neighborhood

Pittsburgh’s Best Neighborhoods

Pittsburgh Perry South Neighborhood Map
Pittsburgh’s Perry South neighborhood has great access to everything.

Perry South Neighborhood Description

Perry South fills out the north hills with single family homes and a nascent commercial center that could use some investment. Another of Pittsburgh’s discrete North Hills neighborhoods, alongside Perry North, Observatory Hill, Fineview, Brighton Heights, and Marshall-Shadeland, Perry South meets the standard set by its peers with mostly historic homes located on mature streets. Like the Marshall-Shadeland neighborhood, Perry South needs more investment in its neighborhood center. Unlike Marshall-Shadeland, Perry South does not have Shadeland Avenue to help the neighborhood function with corner cafes and other mixed land uses. Thus, Perry South ranks a tick lower than Marshall-Shadeland. As a whole, the North Hills feel somewhat forgotten by the greater Pittsburgh metro because there are no extraordinarily hip neighborhoods, bustling commercial centers, party destinations, or gameday hotspots. Perry South meets those standards, and some might argue that the quiet nature of Perry South and the North Hills is precisely why they live there.

Neighborhood Ranking Criteria

A Front Door

Unless I missed one, I didn’t notice gateway signs into Perry South. Given that many of the neighborhood’s boundaries blur with Perry North and Fineview, proper gateway signage would certainly help to define Perry South better.

An Identifiable Center

Pittsburgh Perry South Neighborhood Center
Perry South’s neighborhood center needs some love.

Perry South’s neighborhood center has lots of potential. Located at the intersection of North Charles Street and Perrysville Ave, the bones of a perhaps healthier commercial area still exist and there are several larger historic buildings ripe for some investment. Investment won’t make sense, however, until the city or Redevelopment Authority figure out a few public/private partnerships to spur redevelopment and hopefully build upon some empty parcels. More on this topic below.

Boundaries

With the exception of I-279 on the east boundary, Perry South’s other three boundaries are fairly blurry. I suspect there are arguments to be had as to where Perry North and Perry South begin and end, for instance. Proper gateway signage would go a long way toward stoking said arguments.

Density

Pittsburgh Perry South Neighborhood Density
Aside from a few random chopped up mansions, this is as dense as it gets in Perry South.

Perry South consists of predominantly single family, detached houses. A few multi-family complexes can be found, however.

Detached Sidewalks and Street Trees

The North Hills as a whole are all sidewalk neighborhoods, but they could all do better with uniform street trees and detached sidewalks, Perry South included.

Diverse Architecture and Buildings That Address the Street

Pittsburgh Perry South Neighborhood Large Homes
There are lot’s of larger homes throughout Perry South.
Pittsburgh Perry South Neighborhood Homes for Sale
These homes in Perry South summarize the neighborhood’s architecture well.

Large homes with large front porches that look upon the street is the dominant theme in Perry South.

Mixed Land Uses

Pittsburgh Perry South Neighborhood Wilson BBQ
Wilson’s will serve you up some proper barbecue in Perry South’s neighborhood center.

A few c-stores and the neighborhood’s commercial center represent the extent of Perry South’s mixed land uses.

Street Energy

Perry South isn’t much for street energy, including the neighborhood center.

Streets That Generally Connect

Perry South does well for street connectivity. Most roads lead you to the collectors of Perrysville Ave and North Charles Street, which will certainly make transportation engineers happy.

Transit Access

The North Side as a whole could use some sexier transit than just buses. Alas, Perry South is stuck with them.

Walkability

Pittsburgh Perry South Neighborhood Split Stairs
There are so many public staircases in Perry South that private stairs connect to the public stairs.

Perry South is walkable to the extent you have somewhere to walk to. The neighborhood center has a few helpful commercial establishments but, as a whole, it functions more as a strip mall than a traditional neighborhood center.

Opportunities for Improvement

Spend money to beautify Perry South’s neighborhood center. Make it look inviting. The neighborhood center appears unhealthy on account of all the vacant buildings, vacant lots, poor curb appeal, and its minimal street energy. All said things can be fixed, however, with some effort from those endowed with the powers to give incentives to the real estate development market and the authority to beautify public rights of way. Improve the neighborhood center, improve the neighborhood. Otherwise, how about some proper gateways into Perry South? The neighborhood could be fabulous if someone with authority would give it attention.