A Photo Tour of Pittsburgh's Upper Lawrenceville Neighborhood

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    Butler Street

    Caffè d'Amore storefront
    Photo by Dave Harmon

    The 5000 block of Butler Street is a snapshot of what’s happening in Upper Lawrenceville: new shops and refurbished storefronts alongside many buildings that are closed or under construction. A tarp-covered storefront exists next to a creative wellness space, The Garden of the Mind, and a coffee shop, Caffè d'Amore.


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    Caffè d'Amore

    Inside Caffè d'Amore
    Photo by Dave Harmon

    Caffè d'Amore is the new coffeeshop at 5648 Butler Street, opened in this location in fall 2015. The coffee shop is known for using beans from select micro-roasters, locally sourced Pasture Maid Creamery milk, and handcrafted syrups.


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    A & P

    Vacant storefront that used to be a market.
    Photo by Dave Harmon

    In this neighborhood, many storefronts survive for the possibility of tomorrow. This location at 5130 Butler Street was once an A&P Market. A&P (The Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Company) was the country’s first grocery chain and once the world’s largest retailer.


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    Vestis Men's Clothing

    Storefront of Vestis Men's Clothing
    Photo by Dave Harmon

    Vestis Men's Clothing is the first new store between renovation projects at 5124 Butler Street. Vestis strives to stock quality goods from companies that produce ethically and treat their employees fairly.


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    Inside Vestis

    Inside Vestis, a customer tries on a sweater.
    Photo by Dave Harmon

    Inside Vestis, Reese tries on a sweater as owner Phil Romagni looks on. Phil takes great care in providing total customer satisfaction by helping customers with a perfect fit.


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    Inside Vestis

    A portrait of Vestis' owner Phil Romagni.
    Photo by Dave Harmon

    Vestis opened in August of 2015 and it is Phil Romagni’s first venture. His background is in BioTech.


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    New Kid on the Block

    Storefronts on Butler Street
    Photo by Dave Harmon

    Side by side, Von Walter & Funk and City Grows occupy the 5200 block on Butler Street. Von Walter & Funk is the new kid on block; it opened recently in October 2015. City Grows has been open for about a year. City Grows owner Patty Logan has seen great change in the neighborhood since she started there.


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    Von Walter & Funk

    A portrait of shop co-owners Jamie McAdams and Shawn Aversa
    Photo by Dave Harmon

    Von Walter & Funk was founded by co-owners Jamie McAdams and Shawn Aversa as a luxury boutique in October of 2015. The shop’s concept and products are heavily influenced by the co-owners’ extensive travels. Their mission is to offer high-quality, unique gifts and goods in a beautifully designed setting, plus to provide exceptional customer service and quality.


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    City Grows

    Interior photo of City Grows
    Photo by Dave Harmon

    City Grows is an urban organic garden shop that offers certified organic plants and solutions for city dwellers. With a background in landscape architecture, owner Patty Logan waited for her last child to graduate college before making the leap into business ownership. Now in its second year, the store stocks fresh potted certified organic herbs all year round, and she offers classes for small space and container gardens.


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    Inside City Grows

    At City Grows, the owner pots succulents in teacups
    Photo by Dave Harmon

    At City Grows, Patty Logan says, “I learned so much in my first year of ownership. Many people thought we were seasonal because we’re a garden shop. We had to really redefine ourselves in the winter months.” Here, she pots succulents in teacups for the 2015 Lawrenceville Cookie Tour.



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    Lawrenceville United

    Lawrenceville United's building
    Photo by Dave Harmon

    Lawrenceville United is a resident-driven community organization and a hub for upcoming local events. The group focuses on improving quality of life of Lawrenceville residents and stakeholders through community engagement and advocacy, community restoration and beautification, and community planning and development.


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    Butcher on Butler

    Butcher on Butler storefront
    Photo by Dave Harmon

    Butcher on Butler opened in the location of Foster’s after Butcher Bruce Foster passed away in 2012; today they are a family-owned provider of fresh meats. In addition to their own signature cuts, they continue to serve Foster's famous Kielbasa, smoked hams, bacon, and other items that have been a tradition for more 60 years.


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    Prism Stained Glass

    Prism Stained Glass storefront
    Photo by Dave Harmon

    The beautiful storefront of Prism Stained Glass catches light, even during an overcast Pittsburgh sunset. Owner Catherine Berard opened the shop eight years ago at 5234 Butler Street and specializes in restorations and designing custom pieces.


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    The Cigar Den

    The Cigar Den storefront on a fall evening.
    Photo by Dave Harmon

    The Cigar Den opened at 5268 Butler Street in 2012. It was started to be a comfortable place to relax. It features a Smoker’s Suite with overstuffed chairs, a patio for warm weather, and a walk-in humidor. Tasting and pairing events are also regularly scheduled.



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    Inside The Cigar Den

    Cigar Den’s owner Sam Sing Jr.
    Photo by Dave Harmon

    The Cigar Den’s owner Sam Sing Jr. is a native Pittsburgher. Sing grew up in Lawrenceville and currently lives on the North Side. He’s happy to be back in the neighborhood that he spent so much time in and is getting to know all of his neighbors. “The great thing about this location is it’s easy for people in the neighborhood to walk here,” he said.



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    Inside The Cigar Den

    Two customers at The Cigar Den
    Photo by Dave Harmon

    Shakim from the neighborhood and Thomas from Stanton Heights are daily smokers at The Cigar Den. Says Shakim: “This is the best cigar joint around. Different people: police, social workers, lawyers; all here on a Friday night, all cigar smokers.”


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    Inside The Cigar Den

    A customer at The Cigar Den enjoys a cigar.
    Photo by Dave Harmon

    Ed from Highland Park at The Cigar Den relaxes after a 12-hour shift. Ed says: “Sam’s is off the beaten path in a good way. A great place to talk to a wide variety of people.”


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    Two patrons at Spirit.
    Photo by Dave Harmon

    John and Allison from Stanton Heights enjoy a pint at Spirit Lodge at 51st Street. Spirit is a two-level multi-purpose event space converted from an old Moose lodge. Spirit includes Spirit Lodge, a pizzeria, and a ballroom used for events.


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    Spirit's Head Bartender Ryan Firkel
    Photo by Dave Harmon

    Head Bartender Ryan Firkel is the maestro of the drink menu. Spirit Lodge rotates seasonal beers and craft cocktails.


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    Three women knit at Spirit Lodge
    Photo by Dave Harmon

    Jude, Julie, and Amanda knit at Spirit Lodge for a “Wool and the Gang” promotional event.


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    Dave Harmon is a contributing writer and photographer based in Pittsburgh.