Occupancy for rentals remains high, at 95%. Average rents are $1,511 for a studio, $1,815 for a one-bedroom unit and $2,481 for a two-bedroom unit.

Rendering courtesy of DiAnoia’s Eatery.

Eleven new businesses were added in 2020-21, even as seven closed.

While some beloved staples like the Peruvian place Chicken Latino moved to Beechview and the Smallman Galley restaurant incubator left for East Liberty, a number of new restaurants moved in. They include Pane è Pronto, a daytime bakery and pasta takeout spot from the owners of Strip mainstays DiAnoia’s Eatery and Pizzeria Davide. Coop De Ville, a spot for Southern fried chicken and games (ping pong, duckpin bowling), also opened, and Pennsylvania Libations Wine Shop expanded to the gigantic 1700 Penn, which includes a Helltown Brewing taproom and lots of outdoor seating.

However, replacing the (pre-pandemic) loss of the Pittsburgh Public Market doesn’t seem to be on the agenda anymore.

While much has changed around it, the heart of the Strip has remained the same for the most part. Photo by Tracy Certo.

“Some people might argue that Penn Avenue is one giant public market,” says Austin. “With all our food purveyors and sidewalk vendors, it really does have that feel to it. Public markets around the world are generally subsidized with taxpayer funding so this would really need to involve the public sector,” she adds, nothing that “there are small private versions in the form of places like the (Strip District’s) Pennsylvania Market.”