The Planning Commission recommends the historic designation of 412, boulevard des Alliés

The Pittsburgh Planning Commission on Tuesday unanimously recommended 412 Allied Boulevard for historic designation.

Construction of the building was completed in 1927, according to the historic nomination.

The site originally housed a hospital and then a pharmaceutical research, manufacturing and sales company, said Sarah Quinn of the Pittsburgh Department of Urban Planning. Later, the Art Institute of Pittsburgh was placed in the building.

The building is jointly owned by the city, the City of Pittsburgh Housing Authority and the Urban Redevelopment Authority. All three will use office space in the building once renovations are complete, Quinn said, and the URA has already moved into its space on the site.

The city purchased the downtown building so it could relocate several offices and services from the John P. Robin Civic Center to 200 Ross Street, which is over a century old.

“Architecturally, this building is a great example of an early skyscraper, even though it’s only nine stories tall,” Quinn said.

The structure is a recognizable landmark along Boulevard des Allies, she said, “because of its grandeur.”

“It’s definitely a unique and eye-catching building,” she said.

The building was designed by Joseph Kuntz, who also designed Hunt Armory on Emerson Street in Shadyside. Last year, the Hunt Armory was converted into a public skating rink.

The Historic Review Board had previously recommended the building for historic designation.

The Planning Commission followed suit on Tuesday, voting unanimously to recommend the building for designation. Commissioners Jennifer Askey, Christine Mondor and Dina Blackwell were not present for the vote.

The recommendation is now forwarded to the Pittsburgh City Council.

Julia Felton is editor of Tribune-Review. You can contact Julia by email at [email protected] or via Twitter .

Aurora J. William