Pittsburghers are accustomed to their city appearing on different “best” lists.
From sports lovers and foodies to retirees and Generation Xers, the Steel City has been rated a top destination for people from all walks of life.
It has now been named one of the ten best locations in the United States for artists, coming third in a recent survey.
Recognizing that artists are frequently underpaid for their efforts, the report states that in addition to a thriving cultural scene, artists need to live in a community that facilitates their ambition and livelihood. This includes affordable housing, walkability to gigs, and other things.
Rent.com ranked cities with populations greater than 50,000 based on accessibility, affordable rent for both studio apartments and working spaces, and the density of museums and arts organizations such as artistic collectives, theaters, and performing arts spaces.
The top ten places to live:
1. Hartford, Conn
4. Washington, D.C
7. Berkeley, Calif
9. St. Louis
The average rent for an 820-square-foot apartment in Pittsburgh in March was $1,256. Carrick was identified as the most inexpensive neighborhood with an average monthly rent of $656. Highland Park, East Liberty, Larimer and Morningside were at the top of the scale, with monthly rents averaging $1,669.
Compare that to the average rent in No. 8 Chicago, which is $1,862 for a 720-square-foot apartment.
But it’s not just about the money.
Aside from financial matters, here are five characteristics that make Pittsburgh a terrific place for artists and art enthusiasts alike:
1. A wide variety of museums and galleries, ranging from world-renowned institutions such as the Carnegie Museum of Art, The Warhol Museum, and The Mattress Factory to public art projects, neighborhood galleries and artist collectives.
2. Internationally recognized music and theater organizations — From the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra and the Pittsburgh Opera to the many smaller theater and music groups and homegrown musicians.
3. Financial support for organizations such as the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust, as well as performance venues such as the Benedum Center, Heinz Hall, and even Heinz Field, which host local, regional, and national touring acts.
4. Arts fairs and festivals, such as the main Three Rivers Arts Festival, which promotes the arts in all its aspects, as well as smaller, local music and arts events
5. The landscapes – From the rivers to the bridges, from downtown to the many diverse neighborhoods, from Mt. Washington to the South Side Flats, there is something unique and wonderful to see everywhere you look.
In 2018, Pittsburgh ranked as one of the top cities in America for creative vibrancy.
It is reaping the benefits of the region’s long-term commitment to the arts and community development. Located at the junction of three rivers, it is no longer the smokey steel metropolis that it once was, with redeveloped greenspaces attracting thousands of people to outdoor cultural events and activities. Over 2 million people visit arts venues and artworks each year, and the Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council and VisitPITTSBURGH collaborate with regional cultural partners to ensure that the arts remain fundamental to the Pittsburgh experience for both visitors and residents.