Reviews & Comments
Pittsburgh, PAPittsburgh deserves more credit
Reading the other comments posted about Pittsburgh, I felt that I needed to contribute to give Pittsburgh a bit more credit than has been giving. I lived in Pittsburgh for about four years. Overall, my husband and I enjoyed Pittsburgh and it has a special place in our heart as that is where we got married and made a strong group of friends. We ultimately left because of the job market - there just isn't a huge amount of job opportunities for our industry that pay fairly compared to US market values. To help somebody who is considering moving to Pittsburgh, I've broken out the pros and cons (from my perspective) below:
- The people: it's a midwestern city and the people are friendly without feeling fake
- A lot to do: whether you're a sports fan, academic, outdoorsy, foodie, this that or the other, you will find your place in Pittsburgh
- Old city vibe: Pittsburgh was built in the 1800's and has so much beautiful architecture (my favorite being the Carnegie Library). If you like the feel of Philadelphia, New York, Boston and other East coast cities, you'll like the feel of Pittsburgh
-Summer and Fall: In the summer and fall, people come out of the woodwork to enjoy the weather. There's mild enough temperatures and Pittsburgh is just beautiful during these seasons.
-Museums: Pittsburgh is an academic city, so there are a lot of museums. The Heinz History Center and Carnegie Natural History Museum are world-class and my personal favorites.
-Healthcare: UPMC is ranked #8 in the US for healthcare systems. Pittsburgh also has a killer sports medicine program (Rooney Sports complex), so if you are an athlete, this may be something that is appealing to you.
- Career opportunities: depending on your industry, Pittsburgh doesn't have a lot of job opportunities. My husband and I ultimately moved for this reason. This doesn't apply if you're in academia, tech, finance, or healthcare.
- Weather: despite what I wrote about Summer and Fall, the Winters and Spring are BRUTAL in Pittsburgh. I did have issues with seasonal depression while living there and I don't think that's uncommon given the amount of cloud cover and rain.
- Air quality: I have asthma, so this was tough. It does get pretty rough at times, so just keep that in mind if you're a health-nut.
- Taxes and utility costs: The taxes and utilities are high (Pittsburgh Water prices are outrageous)
- Traffic: While the traffic isn't nearly as bad as Los Angeles, NYC, Atlanta, or Austin, it is surprisingly terrible for a mid-size city. The infrastructure was built for horse-and-buggy and what "improvements" have been made to the road make navigating a cluster-f to get through.
- Class / wealth disparity: Pittsburgh has some VERY rough areas that I don't recommend even driving through. On the other side of the coin, there are million dollar homes sprinkled in the city and surrounding areas. It's sickening to see the huge disparity between the two. And it's only getting worse - while the city is working hard to become a more appealing place to live for Millennials, the lower classes are being pushed further out and displaced into specific areas. Again, this likely isn't specific to Pittsburgh, but it is troubling nonetheless.
Personally, I love Pittsburgh and we likely would have stayed had the market been better for our careers. If you have a solid job or if your industry has a solid presence in Pittsburgh, I highly recommend giving this city a shot.