Observatory Hill


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Summer 2017 Newsletter
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Riverview Park

Riverview Park

Created in 1894, the park predates the City of Allegheny’s annexation to the City of Pittsburgh in 1907. Formed largely from farmland, today’s Riverview Park is known for its dense woodlands and steep topography.

Early photos of the park show an open, pastoral landscape with upland meadows and grassy hillsides a dramatically different look from its wooded character today. During the late 1930sand early 1940s, Works Progress Administration workers built several rugged buildings including the Visitor's Center, the Valley Refuge Shelter, and two bus shelters. It once contained a small zoo with elk paddock and bear pit and an amphitheater below the Activities Building on the Valley Refuge Road.

Nestled between Perrysville Avenue, Woods Run and Marshall Avenue, the 287-acre park is known for its wooded trails and dramatically steep hillsides. The park’s extensive network of trails invites hikers, joggers, and the occasional horseback rider into the woods. The park is also home to the landmark Allegheny Observatory, a space-themed playground, a visitor’s center, a swimming pool and activities building, the natural beauty of the Mairdale watershed, and the popular two-mile Riverview Loop. Residents enjoy the park's pool, playground, ball field, shelters and summertime concerts and movies. The latest addition to the park is a Soccer Field to be operational late this summer.

Restoration of the building and the surrounding landscape included creating a new trail, plantings of numerous native trees and shrubs, and clearing invasive species. Future plans for the park include continuing restoration of the Snyder’s Point natural area.