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Hazelwood, a Grieving Community

In my senior design capstone I learned and designed alongside the community of Hazelwood, an underserved neighborhood in Pittsburgh. Hazelwood used to be a thriving neighborhood full of families and a diverse, connected community. After the last steel mill closed in the late 90s, however, Hazelwood lost it’s local economy and residents moved away leaving only a faint memory of Hazelwood’s past vibrancy behind. 

Hazelwood, a Strong Community

After spending time with Hazelwood people and even forming some lasting friendships, I came to know Hazelwood not by the loss they experienced but by the cherished memories, thriving aspirations, vulnerable grief, and local advocacy that is very present in this neighborhood. Knowing this, an exhibit to celebrate the resiliency of this place began to take shape. It would be an exhibit to remember what came before and envision how this strong community was paving the way for their future.

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