Mellon Square, Pittsburgh, PA

For Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy

Planning for Mellon Square’s 21st century renaissance, Heritage Landscapes led the development a detailed planning report and proceed through a phased renovation for this iconic Modernist public space. The work of the talented team included:

  • Prepare thorough historic documentation, analysis and renewal recommendations
  • Observed and recorded current uses to inform revitalization
  • Catalogue widespread degradation of materials and details
  • Provide design and construction documents for fountains, water display and lighting
  • Detail of the new overlook terrace, walls, ramps, paving, planters, benches
  • Incorporate a small green roof for green best practices
  • Design and detail a stainless-steel mesh, interior lit overlook railing
  • Design of an interpretive wall and surrounds

New construction of the Main Fountain and Cascade matched historic character while incorporating contemporary technical details while the extension for a new terrace added 18% to the public space providing views over the street and rebuilt cascade.  Details throughout Mellon Square replaced lost and degraded elements of planters, paving, benches, vegetation, lighting, utilities and drainage.  To foster public appreciation an interpretative panel and digital mobile tour were developed. A revitalized Mellon Square, reopened in summer 2014, and with constant maintenance and security in place reveals public appreciation through daily use. This valued public space has affected over $300 million in surrounding investment, spurring Pittsburgh’s third urban renaissance. Awards for the planning report and project signal the success of this important work.


Mellon Square construction documents and administration, 2014; Mellon Square Preservation, Interpretation & Management Plan, 2009


Heritage Landscapes, lead-Hilbish McGee Lighting Design, Allen & Shariff, Atlantic Engineering, Mortar & ink, Pfaffman+Assoc., HydroDramatics; planning reportteam-SILMAN,Grenald Waldron Associates, Neil Silberman, La Quatra Bonci; MTR Landscape Architects; EPD; The Cultural Landscape Foundation


The restored Mellon Square continues to dazzle people with the beautiful fountains, pristine terrazzo, artful lighting and more. You have been absolutely integral to this success. Meg Cheever, President, Pittsburgh, Parks Conservancy With profound appreciation for your leadership, insight, and integrity in bringing this dream to life! Susan Rademacher, Parks Curator, Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy