Continue reading

" />

The Kaufmann Building Through the Years

The legendary Kaufmann building in downtown Pittsburgh is set to live a new life once again, as a new owner comes forward with a revised $40 million plan for the historic landmark. A lobby that now looks “Miami” is to be restored to something closer to the old grandeur. Parking slated for the third and four floors will be built out. More retail tenants are expected to move into the second floor space and there will be an effort to get more dining around the first level edges. And there will be an ice rink on the roof that everyday folks will be able to use. Look back to the building’s past lives through the years in the gallery below and read more on the emerging business deal from Mark Belko in the Post-Gazette.

Vintage postcard of Kaufmann’s Department Store in downtown Pittsburgh. (Post-Gazette Archive)
Left: Kevin Hall struck a classic pose while polishing Kaufmann’s clock on July 12, 1983, in Downtown. (Carol Morton/Pittsburgh Press Archive)
Right: Bernadette Leppold of Verona and classmates from St. Paul Cathedral High School under the Kaufmann’s clock in their 1952 yearbook. (Submitted)
People crowd around Kaufmann’s during the Christmas rush, circa 1880 in Downtown. (Courtesy Senator John Heinz History Center)
Alicia Carothers, 4, of Gisbonia, and her grandmother Else Zupko, right, of the North Side, get a close-up view of a Christmas display window at Kauffman’s, Dec. 13, 1980, in Downtown. (Ross A. Catanza/Pittsburgh Press Archive)
Left: While waiting for her bus after a shopping trip Downtown, Mary Kelly, of Swissvale, took a close look at the detail of the 1987 Christmas season window display at Kaufmann’s. (Pete Diana/Pittsburgh Press Archive)
Right: Karen Lynch-Schirra with Santa Claus at KaufmannÕs in 1948. (Courtesy Detre Library & Archives at the Senator John Heinz History Center)
KaufmannÕs on the corner of Smithfield Street and Forbes Avenue, formerly Diamond Street, in a photo taken in 1912, Downtown. (Post-Gazette Archive)
Before the Kaufmann’s clock was built, Lady Liberty (upper left) was the focal point of the “Grand Depot” store, Smithfield Street from Forbes to Fifth Avenue. This photo is from the 1880s. (Courtesy of the Senator John Heinz History Center)
Left: Young people on Kaufmann’s clock, Oct. 17, 1971. (Tony Kambic/Post-Gazette Archive)
Right: Four generations of the Henke Family stand under the Kaufmann’s clock on Aug. 12, 2005, in Downtown. The family came from across the country to meet under clock because of its sentimental meaning to the older members of the family who have moved away from the city. (Alyssa Cwanger/Post-Gazette Archive)
A housewife ironing was how Kaufmann’s advertised home and household goods in April 1961. (Courtesy Senator John Heinz History Center)
Shoppers crowd the first floor of Kaufmann’s at the start of the Christmas shopping season on Nov. 29, 1985, in Downtown. (John Beale/Post-Gazette Archive)
William Griffith of McCandless plays Santa Claus at Kaufmann’s, Dec. 3, 1996, in Downtown. At left is Mrs. Claus, a.k.a. Barbara Marsh of Dormont. On Santa’s knee are Ryan Scott, left, 5, of Houston, and Meghan Gregg, right, 2, of Eighty Four. In the foreground, back to camera, is Kristin Scott, 2, of Houston, Ryan’s sister. (Tony Tye/Post-Gazette Archive)
A streetcar passes in front of KaufmannÕs in 1984, Downtown. (Courtesy Steve Morgan/Wikimedia Commons)
In a sign of change, a worker replaces Kaufmann’s plaques with plaques saying “Macys” on the downtown store front, on Sept. 1, 2006. (Darrell Sapp/Post-Gazette Archive)
The “Macy’s Stars” dance on a closed Smithfield Street as part of a block party celebrating Macy’s purchase of Kaufmann’s, on Sept. 8, 2006, in Downtown. (Darrell Sapp/Post-Gazette Archive)
Karen Honacher and Dave McGee, center, wait to be married under the Kaufmann’s clock on Fifth Avenue and Smithfield Street on Nov. 17, 2013, in Downtown. Mr. McGee is a horologist who renovated the clock in 1998. (Kelly Tunney/Post-Gazette Archive)
Ron Sloss, visual manager at Macy’s in Pittsburgh Mills, adds snow to the historic Kaufmann’s Clock window at the downtown Macy’s on Wednesday, November 20, 2013. The “Magic of Christmas” themed windows were unveiled annually during the city’s Light Up Night festivities. (Rebecca Droke/Post-Gazette Archive)
Edna Jefferson, left, of Homewood, and her daughter, Carrie Lofton, of Overbrook, grove to the bands music at ÒThe Influence of Black StyleÓ panel discussion on Feb. 26, 2014, at Macy’s Downtown. (Bill Wade/Post-Gazette Archive)
A quiet scene on the first floor of Macy’s on Friday, Aug. 28, 2015, in Downtown. The company announced they were closing the downtown store around Labor Day of 2015. (Lake Fong/Post-Gazette Archive)
A couple walks past a mural painted on a boarded up window on Wednesday, Aug. 9, 2017, at the former Macy’s building Downtown. (Alex Driehaus/Post-Gazette Archive)
Ribbon cutting at the grand opening of the EVEN Hotel Pittsburgh Downtown on Dec. 3, 2019, inside the historic Kaufmann building. Pictured from left are Matthew Shollar, Alfons Melohn, Robert Brashler, Rich Fitzgerald, Colleen Keating, Aubrey Worek and Kathryn Bryant. (Courtesy Tressa McCune)
Guests mingle in the main lobby during the grand opening of the EVEN Hotel Pittsburgh Downtown, on Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2019, inside the historic Kaufmann building. (Steph Chambers/Post-Gazette)
Target has announced it is expecting to open a retail outlet in the first floor of the old Kaufmann’s building at the intersection of Fifth Avenue and Smithfield Street, seen here on Thursday, July 23, 2020, in Downtown. (Steve Mellon/Post-Gazette)