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BlitzburghRockCity
04-01-2010, 01:47 PM
http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/10091/1047127-28.stm

Thursday, April 01, 2010
By Mark Belko, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
More than a decade in the making, the Steelers started construction this week on a $12 million entertainment complex next to Heinz Field, a venture that has featured more twists and turns than an elusive running back.
Even before the stadium opened in 2001, the Steelers were pitching the idea of building a 5,600-seat amphitheater on the North Shore to complement fall football as well as summer baseball at PNC Park.
But the idea proved to be fraught with more obstacles than a zone blitz defense. The Steelers worked with several developers on plans that never came to fruition, lost almost half of the state funding for the project, and battled some Stadium Authority board members and community activists over the price of the land and a benefits agreement for the North Side.
In the end, the Steelers partnered with Continental Real Estate Cos., the Columbus firm developing the land between Heinz Field and PNC Park, to get the deal done.
"I think everyone involved in the project worked very, very hard to see it through," said Mark Hart, director of business for the Steelers. "It's part of the Rooneys' commitment to the development of the North Shore. This is the next step. It's going to be a great amenity and attraction for visitors."
The complex will be built to host both indoor and outdoor concerts and events. The Steelers and Continental hope to have the outdoor side finished for the start of football season in September. The indoor part probably won't be ready until late October.
The complex will be able to hold as many as 2,500 people for indoor concerts that won't offer seating. Capacity will be lower for shows with seating. There will be room for as many as 5,000 outdoors.


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