Dormont Presbyterian Church

Dormont Presbyterian Church

Dormont Presbyterian Church (now North Way Community Church) in winter sunlight.

Potomac Avenue, Dormont

Potomac Avenue

One of the most pleasant shopping streets in the South Hills, Potomac Avenue has a remarkable variety of things to do in a short space. There are coffeehouses, restaurants, an undivided neighborhood movie palace still showing movies, a wine shop, a bakery, a bookstore, a large and well-stocked Turkish-Russian grocery, an oriental-rug dealer, and a streetcar stop on the Red Line (Potomac) that makes it all accessible.

The old Dormont Presbyterian Church (now North Way Christian Community) dominates the street in just the right way.

Spanish Mission Style in Dormont

A modest commercial building on Potomac Avenue, this is a good example of the Spanish Mission style in commercial buildings and apartment houses. The style—a kind of Eastern fantasy of the Southwest—is certainly not unknown elsewhere in the Pittsburgh area, but for some reason it was especially popular in Dormont, where numerous Mission-style buildings still stand. Doubtless the original roof overhang above the name was tile, and very probably green tile. Below, the building at Potomac and Glenmore Avenues retains its original green roof tiles.

Apartments and Storefronts, Dormont

This interesting residential-commercial structure on Potomac Avenue seems to combine two styles. The apartment building is a kind of very late Italianate, but the way the projecting storefronts form a sort of courtyard seems very much in the Mission style, as do the sloped roofs, which old Pa Pitt suspects were originally tile rather than asphalt shingles.

Dormont United Methodist Church

The year 2013 was a bad year for older churches in Dormont: three of them—the Presbyterians, the Baptists, and the Methodists—gave up trying to maintain their fine old buildings with diminished congregations. The Presbyterians sold their building to a suburban megachurch; the humbler Methodists sold their building to Buddhists who used it as a temple. But the Buddhists, after having painted the building in this attractive bright yellow and red, have given up as well; and as of October 2019 the building is for sale again.


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