Graduate students from the Heinz College at Carnegie Mellon University toured the Mon Valley on Saturday as part of a project to study technological challenges to redeveloping the region.
Led by Rick Stafford, distinguished service professor of public policy, the students in the course titled "Societal Consequences of Technological Change" visited sites in Braddock, Duquesne and McKeesport, stopping for lunch at the Tube City Center for Business & Innovation (the former McKeesport Daily News Building).
Above, Alex Pazuchanics, assistant director of planning, policy and permitting for the City of Pittsburgh, McKeesport Mayor Mike Cherepko and Stafford.
Students also met with RIDC officiais at the Industrial Center of Duquesne, including Don Smith, RIDC president, and Tim White, vice president; Steve Herzenberg, executive director of Keystone Research Center; Dave Yargeau, a real estate developer with Mon Valley Initiative; Kevin Kerr, state policy lead for Uber; Jason Togyer, executive director of Tube City Community Media; and Andi Cartwright, a board member with McKeesport Regional History & Heritage Center and Tube City Community Media.
Stafford said students are examining the history of economic and technological disruption in former steelmaking communities as well as challenges facing small municipalities in the 21st century.
In particular, Stafford said, students are studying land use, economic activity and workforce issues, and trying to determine what consequences that new technologies --- including artificial intelligence, automation, self-driving and electric vehicles, and the apps used by the so-called "sharing" economy --- may have on people in struggling communities.
Above, students review old copies of the McKeesport Daily News.
(All photos: Special to Tube City Almanac)
Originally published April 03, 2019.