Keystone Crossroads

Keystone Crossroads: Rust or Revival? explores the urgent challenges pressing upon Pennsylvania's cities. WPSU and three other public media newsrooms in Pennsylvania are collaborating to report in depth on the root causes of our state's urban crisis -- and on possible solutions. Keystone Crossroads offers reports on radio, Web, social media, television and newspapers, and through public events.

Meagan Tuttle on park swings
Kelly Tunney

You've likely heard about crowdfunding on web platforms like Kickstarter. It's where people submit an idea and anyone can sign up to help fund it.

But crowdfunding isn't just a tool for raising money to produce a movie, manufacture a gadget, or make gourmet potato salad. Communities are turning to this funding model for civic projects.

Are historic theaters worth saving?

Jun 25, 2014
Rowland Theatre
Kelly Tunney

  

At its heyday, the Garman Opera House in Bellefonte featured such performers as Harry Houdini and comedians George Burns and Gracie Allen. But financial troubles and a damaging fire left the building sitting empty for several years.

And now the building is gone.

Despite organized community efforts to save it, a developer demolished the building in January to make way for new construction.

One in a series explaining key terms and concepts of Pennsylvania government.

Pennsylvania's Act 47 – the Municipal Financial Recovery Act guides how the state intervenes when a local government can't pay its bills or debts.

The goal is "recovery" – pursued through a plan developed jointly by state and local players.

Chicago "Bean" sculpture
Nam Y. Huh / AP

WPSU is launching a new project called Keystone Crossroads. We’ve partnered with three other public radio stations in Pennsylvania to explore the problems facing the state’s cities and communities and potential solutions. Chris Satullo is vice president of news at WHYY, the lead station in the project. He says not all good solutions come from close to home. And that travel can teach you what your hometown is missing. 

What does the next governor of Pa. need to know about your community?

Jun 23, 2014

Humor us for a moment by imagining the following situation:  You're sitting at your kitchen table sipping coffee, devouring a huge pile of golden brown waffles, and catching up on the latest news — when the next governor of Pennsylvania walks through your door and sits across from you.

Somehow you sense you only have 30 seconds before either Tom Corbett or Tom Wolf disappears into thin air, 30 measly seconds to tell him what he really, most of all needs to do for your city or community. What would you tell him? 

Boarded Pittsburgh Building
Irina Zhorov / WESA

Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto announced that he wants to use the city’s stock of aging buildings as a tool for economic development. Beyond Pittsburgh, too, Pennsylvania has no shortage of old buildings and some cities have long used them as a selling point.  A new study measured the impact of maintaining older buildings in urban areas and concluded that for cities lucky enough to have them, leveraging them can bring improve development.

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