Pittsburgh East End: Explore Diverse Neighborhoods
Overview of the East End
The Pittsburgh East End is a diverse collection of neighborhoods located east of the city's downtown area. The East End neighborhoods encompass a range of settings, from urban areas like the Strip District, Polish Hill, Lawrenceville, Bloomfield, Garfield, and East Liberty, to more suburban-style communities like Squirrel Hill, Greenfield, Shadyside, Stanton Heights, Morningside, Highland Park, Friendship, Point Breeze, Homewood, Larimer, and Regent Square.
Map of Pittsburgh East End Neighborhoods
East End Housing Options
The housing options in the East End of Pittsburgh vary greatly, from cheaper fixer-upper homes to grand mansions. The main attraction for residents is the easy commute to downtown, access to employment, cultural and outdoor amenities, and the added benefit of property appreciation in recent years. Many neighborhoods are considered walkable and bikeable and have good public transportation. Many also have thriving business districts with great dining and shopping options. Three of Pittsburgh's beautiful regional parks are nearby: Schenley Park, Frick Park, and Highland Park.
East End Neighborhood Characteristics
Each neighborhood in the East End has its unique character. Squirrel Hill and Shadyside are known for their grand homes and the city's highest-value neighborhoods. Friendship, Highland Park, and Point Breeze are other communities with large homes. Greenfield, Stanton Heights, Garfield, and Homewood are good options for those on a budget. Lawrenceville is the trendiest neighborhood, but Bloomfield, Garfield, and East Liberty are also popular. And for outdoor possibilities close to home, Regent Square, Point Breeze, Highland Park, Squirrel Hill, and Oakland are excellent choices, as they all sit on the edge of a park.
Pittsburgh East End Restaurants
The east end of Pittsburgh is home to a diverse and vibrant food scene. From casual eateries to upscale dining, the east end of Pittsburgh has something for everyone. In no particular order, here is a list of some of our favorite restaurants in the East End.
- Morcilla - a Spanish-inspired restaurant located in Lawrenceville, known for its charcuterie and wood-fired dishes.
- Smoke Barbecue Taqueria - a casual spot in Lawrenceville known for its BBQ and Tex-Mex fusion cuisine.
- The Vandal - a trendy place in Lawrenceville known for its New American cuisine and craft cocktails.
- Piccolo Forno - an Italian restaurant located in Lawrenceville, known for its wood-fired pizzas and homemade pasta.
- Round Corner Cantina - a Mexican spot in Lawrenceville known for its margaritas and casual atmosphere.
- The Abbey on Butler Street - a gastropub in Lawrenceville known for its creative cocktails and American cuisine.
- Point Brugge Cafe - a Belgian-inspired spot in Point Breeze known for its mussels and fries.
- Spork - a casual spot in Garfield known for its globally-inspired small plates and vegetarian options.
- Paris 66 - a French bistro in Shadyside known for its classic French dishes and cozy atmosphere.
- Noodlehead - a Thai restaurant located in Shadyside, known for its creative Thai-inspired dishes and casual atmosphere.
- Casbah - a Mediterranean spot in Shadyside known for its tapas and outdoor seating.
Early History of Pittsburgh's East End
Pittsburgh's East End was once a hub of wealth and influence. At the turn of the 20th century, it was the world's most affluent neighborhood, with its inhabitants controlling 40% of the nation's assets. In fact, at that time, more millionaires were living in the Pittsburgh East End than anywhere else on earth.
Famous residents included steel magnates Andrew Carnegie and Henry Clay Frick, pickle king H.J. Heinz, inventor and industrialist George Westinghouse, banking tycoons Richard and Andrew Mellon, aluminum pioneer Alfred Hunt, glass manufacturer Robert Pitcairn, co-founder of Standard Oil Charles Lockhart, cork manufacturer Thomas Armstrong, president of the Pennsylvania Railroad James McCrea, founder of Gulf Oil James Guffey, and the first president of J.P. Morgan's United States Steel Corporation, Charles Schwab.
The East End's history stretches back much further than the turn of the 20th century. Before the Civil War, East Liberty was a small village with a rural charm. Famous taverns and sleighing and equestrian parties were typical. However, things began to change with the opening of the East Liberty Passenger Railway in 1860, which turned the neighborhood into a commuter suburb of Pittsburgh. The Negley family owned much of East Liberty. The Negleys operated a steam gristmill and were farmers. One of the Negley daughters married the rising lawyer and banker Thomas Mellon, whose sons would go on to amass one of the world's great fortunes.
Many East End residents were of Scotch-Irish or German descent and believed in thrift, hard work, and giving back to the community. They became known as the world's models for philanthropy.
The East End Today
The East End of Pittsburgh has undergone a significant transformation in recent decades. Once a neighborhood defined by its industrial past and the luxury of its wealthy residents, the East End has seen a renewed focus on redevelopment and revitalization efforts to make it a more vibrant and livable community for all residents.
East Liberty Revitalization
One of the most notable revitalization efforts in the East End has been the redevelopment of East Liberty. Once a bustling shopping and commercial district, East Liberty had fallen on hard times in the latter half of the 20th century. However, in the last few decades, there has been a concerted effort to breathe new life into the neighborhood. The construction of new housing developments, the opening of new retail and dining options, and the creation of new public spaces have all contributed to the revitalization of East Liberty.
One of the key drivers of this redevelopment has been the East Liberty Development Inc (ELDI). This non-profit organization has been working to revitalize the neighborhood since the 1990s. ELDI has been instrumental in the construction of new housing, the redevelopment of public spaces, and the attraction of new businesses to the neighborhood. The result has been a dramatic transformation of East Liberty, with a renewed energy and vitality that has helped attract new residents and businesses to the area.
Architectural Preservation of the East End
Another critical aspect of the revitalization of the East End has been the preservation and restoration of historic buildings. The East End has a rich history, and many of its buildings are architectural gems that have stood the test of time. In recent years, a renewed focus has been on preserving these buildings and repurposing them for new uses. The Highland Building, for example, was designed by the visionary architect D.H. Burnham and has been restored to its former glory. Now it houses offices and retail spaces. The East Liberty Presbyterian Church, known as one of the neighborhood's "cathedrals of capitalism," was built by the Mellon brothers in 1933 and carefully restored to its original design.
Public-private partnerships have been helpful to the revitalization of the East End. These partnerships were crucial for financing many of the redevelopment projects in the area. The City of Pittsburgh, the State of Pennsylvania, and private foundations have all played a role in supporting the revitalization of the East End.
Complete List of East End Neighborhoods
Here are neighborhoods that comprise Pittsburgh's east end:
- East Hills
- East Liberty
- Highland Park
- Point Breeze
- Point Breeze North
- Polish Hill
- Regent Square
- Squirrel Hill
- Stanton Heights
- Swisshelm Park
East End Pittsburgh Homes For Sale
This content last updated on January 31, 2023. Some properties which appear for sale on this site may subsequently have sold or may no longer be available. All information provided is deemed reliable but is not guaranteed and should be independently verified. IDX and listing information is provided exclusively for consumers' personal, non-commercial use and may not be used for any purpose other than to identify prospective properties consumers may be interested in purchasing.