Map plan changes council representation in 30 districts
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Residents of 30 voting districts in about 15 neighborhoods would receive new Pittsburgh City Council representation under a preliminary redistricting map to be released Monday.
Redistricting occurs after the census every 10 years so the nine council districts have a roughly equal number of residents. Under the new map, each council district should represent about 34,000 residents.
The process this time requires Councilman Bill Peduto to give up the most residents and Councilman Ricky Burgess to gain the most. Both represent the East End, but Mr. Burgess' area is poorer and experienced more population loss than any other council district.
The changes would affect 7.4 percent of the city's 404 voting districts.
Under the proposed map, the 10-12, 10-13, 10-14 and 10-15 districts in Stanton Heights and the 11-5 and 11-17 districts in East Liberty would be transferred from Councilman Patrick Dowd to Mr. Burgess, while the 11-14 district in Highland Park would go from Mr. Burgess to Mr. Dowd.
Mr. Burgess also would take the 14-19 district in Regent Square from Councilman Corey O'Connor.
Mr. Peduto would cede the 4-6 district in West Oakland to Councilman R. Daniel Lavelle. He would give the 8-3, 8-4 and 8-7 districts in Bloomfield, the 8-9 district in East Liberty and the 8-11 district in Friendship to Mr. Dowd.
From Mr. Lavelle, Mr. Dowd also would pick up the 2-2 district in the Strip District, which includes the site of the proposed Buncher Co. project. Mr. Dowd has raised concerns about the project and held up a financing plan for the development.
The proposed map was approved Thursday by the City Council Reapportionment Advisory Committee, to which each council member has an appointee.
City Council has the authority to make changes and must approve a final redistricting map.
Matt Merriman-Preston, a political consultant and Mr. Peduto's appointee, said the group made an effort to keep neighborhoods and communities of like interest together.
The committee will hold public hearings on the map at 7 p.m. July 9 at council chamber, Downtown; July 17 at Bistro Soul on the North Side; July 18 at the Knoxville branch of the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh; and July 24 at the Kingsley Center in Larimer.
On Friday, Mr. Burgess said he hadn't reviewed the map but understands that it gives him most of what he requested.
About a week earlier, he had sent the committee a letter voicing his opposition to a proposal that would have given him parts of other neighborhoods instead of parts of Stanton Heights.
Under the new map, as is currently the case, two districts would have a majority of black residents.
Those districts are represented by Mr. Burgess and Mr. Lavelle.
First Published June 23, 2012 12:00 am