Borough of Ambridge
Ambridge has a proud history of being one of the nations’ leading industrial powerhouses. Named after the American Bridge Company, the steel factory in Ambridge produced some of the nation’s finest landmarks from the Oakland Bay Bridge in San Francisco to the Empire State Building in New York. With its’ 446 bridges, Pittsburgh is known as “The city of bridges,” and many of those were made right here in Ambridge. During the war, Ambridge switched from making bridges to LST ships for the United States Navy swelling the population and bringing prosperity to the area.
With the collapse of the steel industry in the 1980’s, the old American Bridge factory was converted into the Port of Ambridge, an industrial park
with many smaller, steel-related industries establishing there, and the former Armco plant experienced a renaissance as a mixed-use complex
of industrial, commercial and office space and was renamed the Ambridge Regional Manufacturing and Distribution Center.
Although Ambridge has a long history as an industrial powerhouse, it is also home to a National Historic Landmark District and is designated a
Preserve America Community. The beautifully preserved Old Economy Village Historic Site is a showcase of life as a Harmonist, and holds many
historical events during the year, depicting life as it was in 1824.
Being only about 15 miles from Downtown Pittsburgh, 20 minutes from Pittsburgh International Airport, 5 miles from Sewickley, immediate access
to Pennsylvania Route 65 and 51, exits on I-79 and I-376, and with a much lower cost of housing in a more relaxed, urban environment, Ambridge
is home to many who choose to live here and commute to their place of work.
Ambridge residents have formed numerous clubs for those wishing to participate in its’ revitalization, including an active gardening club, a club
dedicated to beautifying Ambridge, etc. The residents also enjoy its diverse ethnic heritage represented by its 21 churches, four public parks,
countless specialty shops, B&B’s and hotels, including a nationwide chain hotel, and many family owned restaurants. Ambridge is also home
to the Laughlin Memorial Public Library, the Anglican Trinity School of Ministry, and the Beaver County Emergency Services Headquarters. As
evidence of its progress to revitalize, several new businesses opened last year, including restaurants, theater, antique shops, and more. Indeed,
if a visitor returned to Ambridge after being away for a couple of years, they wouldn’t recognize its’ new found identity.
Although residential property prices have been steadily rising over the past few years as commuters moved into the area and speculators began investing
in anticipation of a new industrial boom caused by the opening of the Shell cracker plant, prices are still well below the national average
and Ambridge will be considered an ideal place to live by workers at the new Shell plant and associated downstream industries establishing
in Ambridge and the local area. As the number of residents increased, the town-center has seen improvement and, as part of the revitalization
program, Ambridge received funding to provide a complete facelift for its downtown corridor situated on Merchant Street between block 4th and
8th Streets. Construction is scheduled to start in 2018. With sidewalk cafés, ornamental street lighting and a host of other improvements,
the downtown will become the focal point for residents and visitors alike.
An industry friendly borough with a good inventory of real estate for sale and lease, Ambridge is anticipating and planning for downstream industries
wishing to establish themselves in the borough. Along with this economic upturn, Ambridge will once again become an economic hub, providing
business for local enterprises.
For companies or people wanting to start or relocate their business to Ambridge, there is no better time. There are many incentives including grants and loans available to anyone wishing to start a new business here. If you’d like to be kept up-to-date about the latest news from Ambridge, please use the newsletter sign-up form to the right. For more information, please contact Ambridge Borough Manager, Joe Kauer at 724-266-4070 or use the form at the bottom of this page to send us an email.
Ambridge Ambassador Program
One person/business in each block of Merchant Street has volunteered to become an Ambassador for prospective businesses or investors who might be interested in locating in their block of Merchant Street.
Our Ambassadors will help prospective businesses by providing information about Ambridge, share their experiences, provide useful information and about properties in their block and information on starting a business in Ambridge.
A list of Ambassadors and a copy of their Ambassador's Handbook is available for download and can be accessed by clicking here.
Ambridge wants second historic landmark designation
As reported in The Times 3/17/2019:
The Ambridge council is contemplating the possibility of applying for National Register Historic Landmark designation for Merchant Street between 3rd and 8th Streets because of its historic role in the steel industry.
The Council has already been awarded a $25,000 grant by the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission for help to compile the information required to apply to the U.S. Department of the Interior for their approval and to be awarded this prestigious designation
“We have two really unique and important historical stories of national significance here,” Borough Manager Joe Kauer said. “First is Old Economy and the Harmonists. The second is Merchant Street with the golden age of the steel industry and with American Bridge Co.”
“It would be profound to have a community that’s 1.7 square miles to have two separate National Register designations,” he said. “That’s the same status given to the Statue of Liberty, and to have two in our little town in Beaver County would really be amazing.”
He stated that by receiving this second designation would “truly would make investing or creating business in Ambridge more special than in any other community,” he said. This is because prospective business owners could receive state or federal tax credits to help them rehabilitate historic properties.
The movement to receive a second designation will no doubt enhance Ambridge’s streetscape project, which is scheduled to be complete in June this year.
“Council’s goal was to make the streetscape project more than just lampposts,” he said. “It’s a tool to help people sustain business here or attract business here. The National Register application is the same. It’s about finding creative ways to help entice people to stay here or come here, and finding unique ways to get federal grants to improve buildings here that are historic treasures.”
Congressman Keith J. Rothfus Attends February's Main Streets Project Meeting.
Many thanks to Congressman Keith Rothfus and his team for attending the Ambridge Downtown Development Council meeting!
Ambridge Ranks within Top 25 Cities for Millennials in Pennsylvania
Positive factors that have pushed Ambridge to the top of the list is our low cost of living compared to other areas within the state, affordable properties in the community for young families and access to public transportation. Please click here to read the full article
Main Street Streetscape Project Is Complete!
The Merchant St. Streetscape Project, the catalyst of revitalizing the Ambridge Downtown between 4th and 8th Streets was officially dedicated and opened with a community ribbon cutting ceremony on Saturday, September 28th, 10AM at the new central park on Merchant Street. As this project has been a community effort, all members of the community were welcomed and encouraged to be part of the ribbon cutting. Following the ribbon cutting ceremony, the Ambridge Fall Festival of the Churches Parade was held at 11:00, parading down Merchant Street from 5th Street to 11th Street, and the festival took place within PJ Caul Park at the corner of 11th and Merchant Streets from noon to 6PM. The Fall Festival of the Churches highlights food, crafts and entertainment reflecting the many unique cultures and nationalities of the Ambridge community. That evening a grand fireworks display was held at Ambridge’s Walter Panek Park on 24th Street with food vendors and live entertainment.
Joe Kauer the Borough Manager opened the ceremony and introduced Ambridge Council President Michael A. Mikulich, Sandie Egley, Beaver County Commissioner, Kim Villella, President, Ambridge Regional Chamber of Commerce, and Steve Roberts, Chairman, Ambridge Downtown Development Committee.
Prior to the Blessing of the Roadway by Fr. Michael Roche, Good Samaritan Parish, Mr. Mikulich welcomed the attendees to the dedication ceremony for the Merchant St. Streetscape Project and invited all thise present to cut the ribbon, recognizing that the whole community had worked together to complete this major task of transforming Merchant Street into an aesthetically appealing, pedestrian friendly corridor revitalizing our Downtown. He stated that it marks the end of this project but is also marking the beginning of decades of enhancement to the quality of life of those who call Ambridge home, as well as those who live, work , and shop here.
Mr. Mikulich went on to recognize the help and participation of the Ambridge community, and the companies that had taken part in the project, including Hancock Architecture and Baiano Construction, Merit Electrical Group, Martino Inc., and Youngblood Paving Co., and for funding by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, Beaver County Commissioners, Ambridge Borough, Southwestern Pennsylvania Commission and Duquesne Light Company. Costing approximately $3,000,000, the project included removal of overhead utilities, new storm sewers, new sidewalks, curbs, landscaping, street trees, paving, street amenities, a new parklet, improvements to traffic signals, ornamental lighting and traffic calming upgrades. Construction lasted about one year, starting last August.
Opening Ceremony Photos:
Images courtesy of Aerial Solutions, LLC
Festival of Churches After The Ceremony:
Images courtesy of Aerial Solutions, LLC
Photos of Our Beautiful Ambridge
Upcoming events in Ambridge:
The Ambridge Regional Chamber of Commerce has a comprehensive list of events scheduled in Ambridge. Please click here to go to their Events Page.
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