PITTSBURGH, May 10, 2022 – United States Steel Corporation (NYSE: X) (“U. S. Steel”) and the Pittsburgh Penguins announced today that Penguin’s alumni and Hockey Hall of Famer Bryan Trottier and David B. Burritt, President & CEO of U. S. Steel, will serve as Honorary Co-Chairs of an $18 million capital campaign to renovate the Braddock Carnegie Library. The historic institution launched the campaign in support of a major building renovation.
“This valued community asset is ready for an upgrade to equip it with the state-of-the-art tools necessary to serve the next generation of Mon Valley families,” said David B. Burritt, President & CEO, U. S. Steel. “At U. S. Steel, our Best for All® strategy includes the communities in which we live and work, which is why we are pleased to help kickstart the campaign with a $500,000 donation. Just as we focused on getting to the future faster, the library is ready to write its next chapter, and we are pleased to be a partner with the Pittsburgh Penguins in this important community effort.”
During the rise of the steel industry, U. S. Steel founder Andrew Carnegie chose Braddock – the home of his first steel mill called Edgar Thomson Works – as the site of his “free to the public” library. The Braddock library would become the first of 1,687 free public libraries he would fund throughout the United States.
Carnegie envisioned the library as a place for employees, their families, and the community to gather and grow. The renovation plan includes much-needed physical improvements, to enable the Braddock Carnegie Library Association (BCLA) to better fulfill its social mission as a responsive, essential place of community learning, development, and enrichment for its neighbors.
“Education has always played an important role in my life and has helped me to reach such great heights in my career,” said seven-time Stanley Cup Champion Bryan Trottier. “I believe in the value of a strong community, and in the importance of having a place to gather to learn and have fun. The Braddock Carnegie Library is a vital piece of this community, and I am proud to lead this campaign alongside our good friends at U. S. Steel.”
“The Pittsburgh Penguins are eager to partner with U. S. Steel and the Braddock Carnegie Library to champion the region through the Penguins Foundation’s pillars: community, education, wellness and youth hockey,” said Jim Britt, executive director of the Pittsburgh Penguins Foundation. “Mirroring the Penguins’ investment in the historic Hunt Armory as the home of our diversity hockey programing, we envision this space housing Pittsburgh Penguins Foundation educational programs like the Reading Champions program, built in partnership with U. S. Steel, continuing to add available local literacy resources for schools and families.”
The BCLA serves approximately 15,000 residents in five communities – Braddock, North Braddock, East Pittsburgh, Chalfant, and Turtle Creek – with tools for dynamic, engaged learning, and resources for meeting life’s challenges. In addition to an extensive lending collection, BCLA offers arts and culture programs in its Neighborhood Print Shop and Bathhouse Ceramics Studio; hosts the Artist in the Library Series and Resident Artist in Residence, provides education and workforce development opportunities that connect patrons to jobs, offers meeting spaces for community groups of all types and serves as a safe haven for children and adults. The BCLA is a vital organization to the community, but the current state of its facility is limiting the larger impact it could make.
Right now, only 50% of the building is accessible, but the renovation will create universal accessibility to all floors of the library, including the Music Hall, accommodating all guests with dignity. The renovation will adapt a structure that has already served area residents across the 19th, 20th, and 21st centuries so that it can continue to sustain itself and evolve for many years to come.
Since the formation of the campaign, BCLA has raised more than $8 million in support of the Braddock Carnegie Library renovation project including lead grants from the Eden Hall Foundation, Allegheny Foundation, and Richard King Mellon Foundation, as well as from the Pennsylvania Redevelopment Capital Assistance Program and the Pennsylvania Department of Education Keystone Grant for Public Library Facilities.
If you would like to learn more or donate to the Carnegie One Capital Campaign in support of BCLA click here