Blog

Blog

GTECH’s Policy Framework

GTECH is at a pivotal point in our young history, this April, GTECH will celebrate our 9th Birthday.  We can no longer claim we are a young, scrappy startup organization and need to think about how and what contributions GTECH will make 5, 10, or 20 years from now to the Pittsburgh Region. Later this month, GTECH will officially roll out our Policy Framework document which will be used to to clarify our strategic relationship to key regional policy issues.…

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International Women’s Day

March 8th is International Women's day. Here at GTECH we have almost a 2:1 ratio (including Jasper) of women to men. Not that we're counting... I'd like to recognize International Women's Day by highlighting some of the amazing women we have on staff. In addition to their fabulous day jobs, these ladies spend a lot of time giving back to their communities, families and the world in general. In no particular order, meet some of our wonderful women and get a…

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Unless

UNLESS someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not. South of Lake Erie, a businessman arrives in a pristine wilderness. He builds his first manufacturing plant and begins reining in enough profit on a product that “everyone needs” to allow him to open a second plant. And then a third. And a fourth. Soon the whole purpose of that once pristine natural environment seems to be the production of this good. The…

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“Leap” Into Volunteering With GTECH In 2016!

2016 is a leap year, which means there will be 366 days this year instead of the ordinary 365. The Egyptians were the first to come up with the idea of adding a leap day once every four years to keep the calendar in sync with the solar year. Later, the Romans adopted this solution for their calendar, and they became the first to designate February 29 as the leap day. Fast forward a few thousand years and this means you…

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Who owns vacant land?

Have you ever wondered who actually owns all of the vacant land around Pittsburgh? If so, then we have some answers for you! First, take a look at the map below to get a visual sense of the magnitude of vacancy in the City. The map marks vacant lots by owner, including the two largest land owners in Pittsburgh - the City of Pittsburgh, and the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) and private owners. You can click on the map for a larger, zoom-able…

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Recap of TedxPittsburgh: GTECH Takeover

TEDxPittsburgh is a platform for showcasing the ideas, individuals and innovations that are redefining the Steel City. Pittsburgh is best known for the steel forged on the banks of its three rivers, bridges and a blue-collar work ethic that has come to define our region. However our industrial past has left a unique legacy problem of nearly 27,000 vacant lots that perpetuate social, economic and environmental liabilities, such as increased crime, dropping property values, and toxic soil conditions that negatively…

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Incorporating Resilience Activities at the Community Development Level

"Urban resilience is the capacity of a community to anticipate, plan for, and mitigate the risks—and seize the opportunities—associated with environmental and social change." - The Kresge Foundation You may have noticed that we've been talking a lot about resilience from a variety of perspectives and scales. First, we talked about defining resilience and how it relates to community health. Second, we explored resilience from a national perspective, gaining insight into how cities across the country are developing strategies to…

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Maintenance

Chores. The grind. Tedium. Labor. Maintenance is rarely thought of fondly. And few people are inspired by sameness. We don’t wake up thinking, “Wow! My sidewalk remains unbroken!  The trees in my park are still standing!” Instead we prefer to imagine our creations as permanent, somehow set apart from time, and nature. But the only constant in nature is change: plants grow, spread, die, decay, become soil again; paint fades, chips, peels; wood rots; metal rusts; concrete cracks; even the…

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Share the Love on Valentine’s Day

  Roses Are Red, Violets are Blue, The lot next door is vacant, What should I do?   After Groundhog's Day, the biggest thing to happen to February is Valentine's Day. While the mere thought of candy hearts and doilies may make you shudder, not everything about Valentine's Day has to be cheesy. This year, try something different and point cupid's arrow at a vacant lot.   Across the country, organizations and cities are incorporating vacancy into their celebrations on February 14th. Here…

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ReClaim South Update: What to look forward to this spring!

Since last fall, our ReClaim South Ambassadors have been working hard planning their vacant lot project enhancements. A lot of good things are happening in South Pittsburgh and we are excited to help add capacity to 8 projects this year! To date, the Ambassadors have completed 5 training sessions for the Sustaining Momentum Program, and with only 2 more to go, on the ground implementation is quickly approaching. Here is a breakdown of what we have covered thus far in…

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We Want To Hear From You!

When you’re planning a trip to a new city and are trying to decide where to eat, you likely check out Yelp reviews to find the best restaurant at the lowest cost. When you’re trying to decide whether to purchase that self-watering planter on Amazon, you might first scroll to the bottom of the page and see what others have thought of it. Online reviews drive so much of our purchasing decisions these days; even the comedian Aziz Ansari has…

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Green Playces’ Art Partners

We have worked hard to make our Green Playces a program that fosters creative partnerships. We’ve developed a close working relationship with Allegheny Partners for Out-of-School Time (APOST) to convene local educators and community groups and create curricula. We’re bringing in interested schools beyond existing Green Playces locations to collaborate and improve each project and get more youth involved. We establish lasting relationships with each of our primary Green Playces Partners to ensure long-term maintenance. The list goes on. On…

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