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Beyond Steel

    Aerial perspective diagram showing long term proposal with public spaces, a fresh market, community library, soil remediation areas, flower garden, an urban forest and bird watching areas, riverfront trail, workshop areas, and the green steel production facility.

    The Braddock Edgar Thomson Steel plant has sat on the banks of the Monongahela River for over a hundred years. Its presence is embedded in the history, and the everyday life of Braddock, North Braddock, and surrounding communities. These communities continue to experience the decline of the steel industry, but also the ongoing effects of the plant on environment and health. In this vignette we imagine the future of the heavily polluted site. Taking inspiration from our conversations with long-time residents, including Lou Berry, Lisa Franklin-Robinson, and members of North Braddock Residents for our Future, the proposal builds on calls for asking US Steel to share more resources with the community and take more responsibility for residents’ health. We propose two different possible future scenarios: one where part of the industrial site is closed down and given over as a public asset for community usage, and another where the ET plan is completely shut down in the future. The proposals create future interpretations of this heavily polluted site and the historical structures, putting community values first. These include the re-use of the infrastructure; remediation of the land and structures to respond to environmental concerns; development of clean energy; and new programs and environmental practices partnering with local community organizations including Braddock Carnegie Library, Braddock Farms, Hollander’s, Aunt Cheryl’s Cafe, New Guild Studio, General Sisters. 

    Developed by Lan Qin in conversation with NBRFOF and community members