Tag: Potomac Avenue

  • 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.


    Map

  • Dormont Presbyterian Church

    The old Dormont Presbyterian Church dominates the business district on Potomac Avenue, making that corner of Dormont look almost like a medieval English city. The church was built in 1923 (or in 1907, with an expansion in 1923; Pa Pitt’s sources are a little fuzzy). The Presbyterians, along ith the Baptists and Methodists, threw in the towel in 2013, and this is now a branch of North Way Christian Community.

  • Hollywood Theater, Dormont

    Almost every neighborhood in Pittsburgh and the urban inner suburbs had a neighborhood movie house—or several of them—in the silent-movie era, and many of those buildings are still standing (here are all of old Pa Pitt’s articles on movie theaters). What is nearly unique about the Hollywood, built in 1925, is that it is still showing movies. In fact it shows first-run movies these days, with occasional classic revivals, and a theater-organ performance every once in a while. The Theatre Historical Society of America bought the place in 2018, and we can hope that they will be able to keep it going for many years.

    We can see from this picture that the building has gone through some renovations over the decades, not all of them sympathetic. But the basic outline has not changed. For some reason Mission style was very popular in Dormont in the 1920s, and the Hollywood’s movie-lot interpretation of Spanish-colonial architecture is very appropriate for its setting and use.

    A detailed history of the theater is at Cinema Treasures. The theater is just a few steps away from the Potomac station on the Red Line.


    Map