Our towns: Hyde Park

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Incorporated: As a borough Sept. 3, 1898

Location: Northwestern Westmoreland County, about 30 miles northeast of Downtown Pittsburgh; Hyde Park covers 0.3 of a square mile and is accessed primarily by Routes 356 and 256

Population: 447 (estimated June 2008, U.S. Census)

Government: Mayor-council

Mayor: George Nicksic

Median price of a home: $19,467 after the second quarter of 2010, down from $39,900 a year earlier

Municipal phone (no website): 724-845-4931

School district: Kiski Area, 724-845-2022, www.kiskiarea.com

History: The most distinctive feature about the borough, perhaps, is the Hyde Park Footbridge, a 5-foot-wide, 600-foot-long structure that crosses the Kiskiminetas River and links this Westmoreland County town with Leechburg and Armstrong County. It is the only footbridge that spans Pittsburgh area rivers, and was built in 1920 on piers of a railroad bridge that had been destroyed by flooding.

Its purpose was to enable workers on either side of the river to get to work at the mills and factories that were common in the two towns a century ago. The span was erected by an engineering company headed by John A. Roebling, who designed and built the Brooklyn Bridge. It has been renovated several times, with the current metal structure opening in 1955.

Hyde Park was an industrial hub in the early 1900s, featuring -- among other businesses -- two bottling companies, a brewery, a sheet and tin factory, a brick works, a glove company and a cigar company.

George Nicksic, 80, is one of the older mayors in Western Pennsylvania.


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