Monday, April 23, 2018

A City as Symbol of Resilience

(This post may contain affiliate links, by which I may be financially compensated. See Disclaimers & Policies on my About page.)

Today's post is going to be part travel/local tourism blog and part lesson about resilience and remaking ourselves when what we're doing is no longer working for us.

The City of Pittsburgh has a long tradition of hard work, being synonymous with the mighty steel industry of days gone by.

Photo by Vidar Nordli-Mathisen on Unsplash
When the steel industry suffered, Pittsburgh (and other cities who based their economy on steel) suffered along with it for a period of time. But Pittsburgh ended up surprising me!

When I first visited this city with my now-husband (who is a native of this fine town), I was expecting something like what I'd seen in old pictures: dirty, polluted air, bad traffic, and a sea of black and gold everywhere.

I was pleasantly surprised to find, well, still a sea of black and gold (sports pride is a big thing here!), but otherwise there were pretty, blue skies; majestic, green hills; beautiful neighborhoods and architecture; universities, museums, galleries, and shops; and an interesting incorporation of the old steel town heritage with a new and blossoming tech industry. Since that first visit many years ago, I have often seen Pittsburgh rank on the best places to live in the country.

It speaks to a sort of resilience, doesn't it? Where other cities struggled during the economic downturn, Pittsburgh seemed to remain fairly stable with both unemployment rates and cost of living, and now there is job growth projected in future. When the old ways in the steel industry no longer served, this city reinvented itself as a hub of future industry in the tech and healthcare spaces, instead.

Now, companies like Google, Apple, and Facebook all have offices here, as do a variety of tech startups (Duolingo and Wombat Security, for example) and several self-driving car companies (Uber, Argo AI and Aurora Innovation) have set up shop here. Pittsburgh also put in a bid for the new Amazon east coast HQ, and the Pittsburgh Technology Council released a really jam-packed tech map of the city.

Tech companies are attracted to the many highly-trained students coming out of Carnegie Mellon University, and University of Pittsburgh is known for cutting-edge medical research, the sum of which is that Pittsburgh is now a hub for robotics, computer vision, computer science, and healthcare vocations.

Indeed, there have been billboard signs seen in Silicon Valley enticing people to come live and work here, where housing is still available and affordable. lists Pittsburgh as the "best startup city in America."

Check out this really cool video on how Pittsburgh has remade itself from Steel Giant to Tech Giant. I am very impressed with how my adopted city looks.

Positive press aside, Pittsburgh is just a nice place to live. This post is in honor of the 10th anniversary of my move to Pittsburgh, and I still love it here. What I love MOST about Pittsburgh is the people. They, like their city, are tough, resilient, and friendly. And this won't be my only post on Pittsburgh, to be sure. There is so much to talk about, be on the lookout for future content about things to do here.

I think we can all take something away from this, right? That it is never too late to reinvent ourselves when we need to in order to not only survive, but to THRIVE.

Drop me a line below or on social media, and let me know: have you been to Pittsburgh, or wanted to? Or tell me something cool about where you live! 🐝

~ positively b.e.e. is on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest. Follow me there! ~

P.S.: This book on Pittsburgh looks pretty cool!

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