University of Pittsburgh, Carnegie Mellon University, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Carnegie Museum of Art & Natural History, Forbes Ave, Phipps Conservatory, Schenley Park, S. Craig St, and more. Oakland is a neighborhood that serves as a cultural and international hub of education & innovation to Pittsburgh and the world. While the universities and students dominate the area, they bring with them cheap international eats, parks busy with activity and an urban feel unlike any other in the city.
- The Institutions: All the aforementioned players come together to bring incredible cultural assets and spectacular architecture to the neighborhood. Where else can you walk to grab a morning coffee and hang out with Picasso or a dinosaur afterward?
- The Green Space: While Oakland’s business districts are busy, steps away are some of Pittsburgh’s most relaxing and beautiful green spaces like the lawns of UPitt & CMU and Schenley Park.
- Schenley Plaza: What once was a parking lot is now a buzzy park lined with food stands, a restaurant (The Porch) surrounded by the incredible architecture of the Carnegie and the Cathedral.
- The Food: Cheap, amazing eats are abound thanks to the university population. Our favorites include Conflict Kitchen, Mad Mex (happy hour especially), Las Palmas and Sichuan Gourmet. On the non-cheap side, Butterjoint has one of the best burgers in town.
- Transit Options: Oakland is a major bus hub with ZipCar and Bikeshare stations abound. If you don’t want to deal with parking (and it can be expensive and difficult to find), Oakland is a breeze to go car-free.
- Traffic: Oakland is a major center of employment. Add in students and the fact that Fifth & Forbes are major gateways to the East End and Downtown and you have the perfect storm.
- Student Centric: If you are a student, great. If you aren’t, Oakland can feel a bit like you should be a tourist rather than live there. But with more apartments coming online aimed at a wider audience, we expect this to lessen in years to come.
For a full line up of all the things we love about Oakland, head over to our sister publication, Urbanist Guide.