Island Gem

With its lush greenery, privacy and view of the water, Washington's Landing is resort-like living at its best.



Photos by Becky Thurner Braddock

With its lush greenery, privacy and view of the water, Washington’s Landing is resort-like living at its best.

There is a balcony off the third-floor bedroom suite of this chic townhouse at Washington’s Landing, but it couldn’t be more private. Fully covered by a gently sloping roof, it has walls on three sides, leaving just one side open to the elements. The view is dominated by the Allegheny River, which seems close enough to touch.

Two stories below, a sprawling wooden deck almost begs for a party. Just beyond the deck, a walking path along the river’s edge is lined by lush greenery. On a spring afternoon, the chirping of birds fills the air. You could easily believe, if you sat on that upstairs balcony with your morning coffee or on that downstairs deck with a pre-dinner glass of wine, that you were nestled in a sleepy boating town on the New England coast.

But step toward the railing and glance along the Allegheny River to your right. The gleaming office towers of downtown seem a stone’s throw away, a stunning contrast to the otherwise laid-back vibe. Look to your left, and the 31st Street Bridge arches over the water, a steel-and-concrete reminder that this is the City of Bridges.

Welcome to Washington’s Landing, a multi-use development that combines traditional architecture and a vacation vibe with a central city location.

Of course, this bit of land wasn’t always so scenic. Throughout the 1800s, back when it was known as Herr’s Island, it was home to stockyards, rendering plants and factories. When those businesses eventually left, a brownfield site remained—too tainted to be habitable. Throughout the ’60s, ’70s and ’80s, plans for reclaiming the island were repeatedly formed and then abandoned. Eventually the project came together, and the island was reborn. It’s a modern success story with a nod to history—in 1987, the island was renamed Washington’s Landing because George Washington is believed to have slept there in 1753 after his raft capsized in the river. Nearly 250 years later in the 1990s, Montgomery & Rust began building the townhouse community.

The area now includes things Gen. Washington wouldn’t have imagined: not just homes and office space, but tennis courts, a full-service marina, Redfin Blues restaurant and Three Rivers Rowing, which rents boats and kayaks for a lazy afternoon—or a serious workout—on the river.

Pittsburgh is a study in contrasts, which might explain why visitors are so often surprised by it. In many other American cities, residents must choose either the convenience of an urban environment or the peace of a lush, green one. In Pittsburgh, you can have speedy access to both if your location is as strategic as this.

When you enter the Washington’s Landing complex, it feels as though you’re off the beaten path. And yet it’s almost literally on busy Route 28, close to the vibrant energy of the Strip District and Lawrenceville, and just a short drive to the mellow horse farms of the North Hills. 

Of course, this sweet location isn’t inexpensive. Condo townhomes here are selling in the half-million-dollar range, especially if the owners have invested in upgrades like granite countertops and stained-glass windows.

In addition to the killer view and über-private third-floor balcony, this particular three-bedroom, 2 1/2 bath unit has sleek cherrywood floors, a gas fireplace, a custom steam shower and a jet-spray tub. A custom-made billiards table in the downstairs game room completes the picture. For those keeping score, maintenance fees for this condo unit are $240 per month, and taxes are just more than $7,000 annually.

The owner, a native Pittsburgher, splits his time between here and California. Because his career increasingly keeps him on the West Coast, he decided to put the home up for sale. But he’s been savoring afternoons overlooking the Allegheny, enjoying the sunshine and city views. Saying goodbye to this home—and its to-die-for location—will no doubt be bittersweet.

Edit Module

Edit ModuleShow Tags

Hot Reads

Deep In The Heart of Downtown

Deep In The Heart of Downtown

Downtown Pittsburgh is booming. The Golden Triangle has grown in ways that previous generations may never have envisioned, and the perception of the neighborhood at the heart of Pittsburgh is changing rapidly –– for the better.
And The Winner Is....

And The Winner Is....

Meet the top vote getter in our 2016 Cutest Pet Contest.
The Region's Top Dentists 2016

The Region's Top Dentists 2016

Our latest list includes 368 topDentists in eight specialities from around the region.
Restaurant Review: Smallman Galley

Restaurant Review: Smallman Galley

The first crop of chefs in the Strip District restaurant incubator are four real.
Edit ModuleShow Tags

The 412

Ready for Takeoff: Pittsburgh Airport Hosts First 5K

Ready for Takeoff: Pittsburgh Airport Hosts First 5K

The course directs runners over taxiways usually reserved for incoming and departing planes.
Remembering “Chilly Billy” Cardille

Remembering “Chilly Billy” Cardille

The longtime Pittsburgh television personality had been suffering from liver cancer.
Ladies Night: W Bowl Championship Football Game Comes to Pittsburgh

Ladies Night: W Bowl Championship Football Game Comes to Pittsburgh

Co-owned by Franco Harris, the W Bowl brings together players from across the Women’s Football Alliance in a fierce competition.
Pittsburgh Health & Fitness Start-Up Expands Nationwide

Pittsburgh Health & Fitness Start-Up Expands Nationwide

For more than a year, Fitt has helped Pittsburghers discover new, local ways to exercise and eat healthy. Now, the ‘Burgh-based start-up is expanding its reach to a dozen new cities.

Sign Up for the 412 e-Newsletter

 

Our new, daily e-newsletter is curated by the editors of Pittsburgh Magazine and is designed to give you the very best Pittsburgh has to offer -- delivered directly to your inbox.

Sign me up!
* Email
 First Name
 Last Name
  * = Required Field
 
Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit ModuleShow Tags

Hot Reads

Deep In The Heart of Downtown

Deep In The Heart of Downtown

Downtown Pittsburgh is booming. The Golden Triangle has grown in ways that previous generations may never have envisioned, and the perception of the neighborhood at the heart of Pittsburgh is changing rapidly –– for the better.
And The Winner Is....

And The Winner Is....

Meet the top vote getter in our 2016 Cutest Pet Contest.
The Region's Top Dentists 2016

The Region's Top Dentists 2016

Our latest list includes 368 topDentists in eight specialities from around the region.
Restaurant Review: Smallman Galley

Restaurant Review: Smallman Galley

The first crop of chefs in the Strip District restaurant incubator are four real.
The 10 Best Smiles in Pittsburgh

The 10 Best Smiles in Pittsburgh

Plus - we poll dentists included in our 2016 list of topDentists for their opinions and tips gleaned from years of experience in their profession.
A Clear Head, A Cannon for an Arm

A Clear Head, A Cannon for an Arm

After his first taste of big-league ball, Pittsburgh Pirates pitcher Tyler Glasnow is ready for his close-up.
Edit Module

 

Edit Module

Edit ModuleShow Tags

On the Blogs


Ready for Takeoff: Pittsburgh Airport Hosts First 5K

Ready for Takeoff: Pittsburgh Airport Hosts First 5K

The course directs runners over taxiways usually reserved for incoming and departing planes.

Comments


Pittsburgh, only cooler
PittGirl: How You Should Grade A Squishy Tongue

PittGirl: How You Should Grade A Squishy Tongue

Kennywood Park opens soon and new this season is the return of the famed whale at the entrance of Noah’s Ark. In the name of science, PittGirl paid an early visit to test the squishiness quotient of the whale's all-important tongue.

Comments


All the foodie news that's fit to blog
A Thyme and Place

A Thyme and Place

Old friends Tricia Cohen and Lisa Graves reconnect via Facebook and collaborate on a historical cookbook.

Comments


Not just good stuff. Great stuff.
The Best 7 Spots in Pittsburgh to Watch the 2016 Euro Cup

The Best 7 Spots in Pittsburgh to Watch the 2016 Euro Cup

Grab your kits, scarfs and get ready to watch the Euro 2016 Pittsburgh-style. We'll show you where to go to get your fan on.

Comments


After Dark Hall of Fame: Sharp Edge

After Dark Hall of Fame: Sharp Edge

The local pubs that fly the Sharp Edge banner remain a favorite for top-notch beer and tantalizing grub.

Comments


Mike Prisuta's Sports Section

A weekly look at the games people are playing and the people who are playing them.
Up-and-Down Bucs Survive First Half With Hope Intact

Up-and-Down Bucs Survive First Half With Hope Intact

The Pirates did just enough in the days before the All-Star break to embrace the second half of the season with anticipation if not expectation.

Comments


Style. Design. Goods. Hide your credit card.
Namaste! Sandals Made from Yoga Mats

Namaste! Sandals Made from Yoga Mats

Sanuk’s Yoga Sling Sandal are super comfy yet chic.

Comments


Sean Collier's Popcorn for Dinner

The movies that are playing in Pittsburgh –– and, more importantly, whether or not they're worth your time.
The New Ghostbusters Is a Worthy Addition to the Franchise

The New Ghostbusters Is a Worthy Addition to the Franchise

Reviews of "Ghostbusters" and "The Infiltrator," plus local movie news and notes.

Comments


Everything you need to know about getting married in Pittsburgh today.
The Perfect Shot: Wedding Photographers’ Favorite Moments

The Perfect Shot: Wedding Photographers’ Favorite Moments

We asked these Pittsburgh wedding photographers to share some of their most-memorable photos — and the stories behind them.

Comments


The latest tips and trends to refresh your home.
Ten Thousand Villages Celebrates Grand Reopening

Ten Thousand Villages Celebrates Grand Reopening

The new, larger location in Squirrel Hill features an expanded selection of handcrafted merchandise.

Comments


The hottest topics in higher education
Online Education at Edinboro University Nationally Ranked

Online Education at Edinboro University Nationally Ranked

The university landed in the top 10 schools for disabled students seeking an online education.

Comments