The Arrott Building Reflected

Reflection of the Arrott Building

The wonderfully elaborate top of the Arrott Building reflected in the Patterson Building.

Times Building

Times Building

In his earlier career, Frederick Osterling carved out a niche for himself providing Richardsonian Romanesque buildings for people who couldn’t get Richardson (because Richardson was dead). The Allegheny County Courthouse created a mania for the style in Pittsburgh, and Osterling seems to have had all the work he could handle. In this building from 1892, we see the hallmarks of Osterling’s own variation on the style. He was more florid than Richardson, but he was always aware of the overall composition, never allowing the numerous individual details to break up the carefully orchestrated rhythm of the façade.

Below, we see the Times Building in context, with One Oxford Centre looming in the middle distance.

Times Building and One Oxford Centre

The Arrott Building Reborn

Arrott Building

After much expensive restoration and renovation, the Arrott Building (designed by Frederick Osterling) has reopened as a hotel called “The Industrialist.” The exquisite lobby has been carefully preserved. The picture above is huge, stitched together from several photographs to make what may be the only complete head-on picture of the Wood Street façade of the building on the internet.

Entrance to the Arrott Building

Negley-Gwinner-Harter House, Shadyside

This Second Empire mansion had a narrow escape: the third floor burned out in 1987, and the owner died the next year, leaving the house a derelict hulk. It was rescued from demolition at the last minute by serial restorationist Joedda Sampson, who painted it in her trademark polychrome style; it has since passed to other owners, whose pristine white also works well with the design. The house was built in 1871; Frederick Osterling worked on early-twentieth-century renovations and additions.

Korean Central Church of Pittsburgh, Shadyside

This building began its life as the First Methodist Church; it later passed into the hands of the Seventh Day Adventists, and now belongs to a nondenominational Korean congregation. It is a work of Frederick Osterling in his typically florid Romanesque style. Obviously the spire has had a bit of bad luck, but the rest of the exterior is in pretty good shape.

This modest but tasteful house seems to be the parsonage for the church, and Father Pitt can easily imagine that it was designed by Osterling as well. He would be happy to have his speculation corrected or confirmed.