Here’s an interesting piece of history and a Pittsburgh fun fact: a small dead-end street in Shadyside is one of a handful of streets left in the world that is still paved in wooden blocks. Roslyn Place, off Ellsworth, isn’t concrete or even cobblestone, it features a unique surface known as Nicolson pavement.
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Have you ever seen a wood-paved street? According to Atlas Obscura, Roslyn Place is the last wood-paved street in #Pittsburgh and one of only a handful left in the world. Wood-block paving became popular in the 1820s-30s and was thought to dampen the sounds of horses and carriages (it really didn’t). Apparently, residents of this street still keep wood blocks on hand for spot repairs, which you can see in several of the photos. Paved with wood since 1914, this 250-ft long street is now a #HistoricLandmark! #atlasobscura #pittsburghpa #history #wood #autumn #offthebeatenpath #travel #TIL #leaves
Some other articles about Roslyn Place and it’s unique wooden pavement…
- Shadyside’s Roslyn Place a quirky, wood-block Pittsburgh wonder, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, February 17, 2017
- Surviving On Charm: Pittsburgh’s Last Wooden Street, WESA, May 29, 2015
- The Surprising Story of Pittsburgh’s Last Wooden Street, Pittsburgh Magazine, September 2015
Where else can you find wooden streets?
There are just a few of these wooden streets that still exists…
- Chicago still has a few wood block alleys. (More photos on Forgotten Chicago).
- St. Louis: 10th street between Olive and Locust Streets
- Philadelphia: 200 block of Camac Street
- Cleveland: Hessler Court