Plans revealed for historic South Side church

PITTSBURGH — An old Catholic Church on the South Side will get a new breath of life.

St. Matthew’s, at the corner of 19th and Mary streets, has stood vacant for more than a decade.

Developers from New York have big plans that will transform the building and the community.

"This large open void, you essentially have a clean palette," said Jared Korchok, a project designer for Desmone Architects.

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"Other developers have come in and wanted to tear the structure down and make townhouses which would have really changed what this site looked like," said Barbara Rudiak, president of the South Side Community Council.

"We just want to make the community a little bit nicer and keep the church the way it is on the outside and make beautiful loft-style condos," said Scott Wolkowitz with AM Group, the firm planning to breathe new life into the building.

A key feature of the project is the one remaining stained-glass window, which would be the focal point of one of the condos. The towering spire may even be used, too.

The developers hope to start construction in June and say it should only take between six and eight months.