Carrie Furnace Site Redevelopment

Allegheny County, PA


The Carrie Furnaces ceased production in 1979. The site closed in 1986 and was designated as a brownfield site. For 16 years, the Rivers of Steel National Heritage Area and its allies worked to have the site designated as a national park by the National Park Service. In 2005 the Redevelopment Authority of Allegheny County (RAAC) gained control of the property with the intent of modernizing it. Kimball has been awarded a contract to assist in the redevelopment of this important piece of America’s industrial history.

The property is situated in the boroughs of Munhall, Rankin, Swissvale, and Whitaker, and the City of Pittsburgh. Access to the site is one of the most challenging aspects of the project because it is bounded by the river bank, steep hillsides, active railroad tracks, an electrical sub-station, and an historic area located on site.

Solution: A variety of services were completed for the Redevelopment Authority of Allegheny County, including:

  • developing multiple conceptual site access routes into the site
  • performing American Land Title Association and boundary surveys for the 168-acre property
  • conducting planimetric and topographic mapping and wetlands assessment
  • preparing environmental abatement and demolition bid documents for the removal of the deteriorated northern access ramp of the abandoned Hot Metal Bridge on the property
  • performing traffic impact studies for key site access points
  • performing geotechnical investigations

The firm is in the process of moving into the next phases of developing preliminary and final construction plans for Phase I, which consists of bringing in fill material to raise the site above the flood plain, requiring extensive permitting from the DEP and the borough, and designing access roads into the site.

Result: Future plans for development of the site include light industrial flex space and residential units. Paperwork has been submitted to have the site designated a national park in conjunction with the Homestead Works National Historic Site. In addition, a link between the furnaces and the park site is planned through refurbishment of the existing Carrie Furnace Hot Metal Bridge that spans the Monongahela River. The project will bring new life to a part of Allegheny County that was once a thriving retail and manufacturing community and preserve an important piece of the region’s industrial history.