Panelists at a Wednesday forum regarding Amazon HQ2: (left to right) Waverly Duck, director of the University of Pittsburgh’s Urban Studies Program; William Generett, Jr., Duquesne University’s vice president for community engagement; Rebecca Bagley, vice chancellor for economic partnerships at the University of Pittsburgh; Beth Shaaban, a Ph.D. student at the University of Pittsburgh’s School of Public Health and an organizer with the Graduate Student Organizing Committee; and Jason Beery, (not pictured) a policy analyst at UrbanKind Institute. (Photo by Juliette Rihl/PublicSource)

How Amazon’s HQ2 may both bring growth and imperil Pittsburgh’s talent pool

When Amazon announced it was looking for a home for its second headquarters, the corporation included a wish list. Their desires included a city with diversity and with great universities churning out talented graduates who could be the next generation of Amazon employees. At a forum on the University of Pittsburgh’s campus Wednesday, concerns were raised about how Amazon and some of the variables on its wish list could coexist. Could graduate students afford to live in a Pittsburgh with Amazon-inflated rents? Would a city that already has a diversity problem be helped or harmed by a corporation whose leadership is dominated by white men?

A person walks along Hamilton Avenue in Homewood on Dec. 21, 2017. (Photo by Ryan Loew/PublicSource)

Pittsburgh is hoping to preserve many of the low-income Bethesda-Homewood housing units

After weeks of scrambling to assist the tenants, city officials and local community groups may have hashed out a plan to salvage the units that can be rehabilitated and to keep HUD’s funding eligible at the properties — or at least within the city of Pittsburgh. So it’s possible, though not certain, that tenants like Makeela and her dad could stay in their homes.