A shared Vision for East Allegheny July 1, 2007



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Housing Vacancy Rates




Table 5: Vacancy (2000 Census)





Vacant Homes*










Place

Total Units

Vacant

Percent of Total

Allegheny County

583,646

12,696

2%

East McKeesport

1146

12

1%

North Versailles

5222

45

1%

Wall

363

22

6%

* Vacant housing units not for sale, rent, or seasonal use.




Table 5 examines vacancy rates in terms of those homes vacant for reasons other than seasonal use, or those on the market for sale or rent. These vacant units provide the clearest indication of vacant or abandoned properties that may ultimately contribute to housing blight or negatively impact the safety and character of those neighborhoods in which they are located. The rate of such properties in Wall Borough, compared with all other municipalities in Allegheny County, is significantly high (utilizing a Z-score test against the County and Wall’s number of units). While not significantly low in comparison with other Allegheny County municipalities, the rates in East McKeesport and North Versailles are lower than that of the County as a whole.





Map 2: Concentrations of Vacant Housing


Map 2 illustrates concentrations of vacant housing, as previously defined. Such concentrations in the Boroughs include the southerly portion of East McKeesport Borough and the western corridor of Wall Borough.

Table 6: Tenure and Vacancy (2000 Census)



Municipality

Total Vacant

For Rent

Occupied Rented

Percent for Rent (For Rent/Rented and Vacant for Rent)

For Sale

Owner Occupied

Percent Vacant (Owner Occupied and For Sale)

Allegheny County

46,496

17,607

177,129

9%

7,677

360,021

2%

East McKeesport

76

21

405

5%

18

665

3%

North Versailles

295

154

1,424

10%

51

3,503

1%

Wall

39

6

127

5%

8

197

4%

Vacancy, in terms of housing for rent or sale, is often a reliable indicator of the housing market. Vacancy of owner occupied units and those intended for sale are relatively low, namely in North Versailles. Conversely, rental vacancies in the boroughs are fairly low while the same rate in North Versailles is twice that amount and slightly more than the County at large. This rate may be linked to a lessening demand for traditional apartment housing provided in larger apartment buildings. The vast majority of rental units in Wall are single-family homes. In North Versailles, 54% of rental units are located within structures housing five or more units whereas only 28% of such units in East McKeesport are located within buildings housing more than five units.


Group Quarters Populations

The United States Census defines “group quarters population” as those


“…not living in households. This term includes those people residing in group quarters as of the date on which a particular survey was conducted. Two general categories of people in group quarters are recognized: 1) the institutionalized population which includes people under formally authorized supervised care or custody in institutions at the time of enumeration (such as correctional institutions, nursing homes, and juvenile institutions) and 2) the noninstitutionalized population which includes all people who live in group quarters other than institutions (such as college dormitories, military quarters, and group homes). The noninstitutionalized population includes all people who live in group quarters other than institutions.”
Group quarters, in the case of the North Versailles, mainly indicate populations in nursing homes, namely the elderly. The 2000 Census indicated no group quarters populations in either East McKeesport or Wall Boroughs. The following table provides an illustration of population housed in group quarters in North Versailles:

Table 7: Group Quarters





2000 Census Group Quarters



Allegheny County

North Versailles

Allegheny County, Percentages

North Versailles, Percentages

Total:

40,617

130

 

 

Institutionalized population:

18,451

98

 

 

Correctional institutions

4,713

0

12%

0%

Nursing homes

11,101

98

27%

75%

Other institutions

2,637

0

6%

0%

Noninstitutionalized population:

22,166

32

 

 

College dormitories (includes college quarters off campus)

13,941

0

34%

0%

Military quarters

3

0

0%

0%

Other noninstitutional group quarters

8,222

32

20%

25%

The number of “noninstitutional group quarters” may, in fact, include elderly residents of personal care or independent living facilities. The analysis of such populations and housing availability therefore relate mainly to serving the needs of the area’s elderly population.


The Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare registers and regulates nursing homes and lists the following homes in North Versailles (no nursing homes are registered within East McKeesport or Wall).


  1. Lincoln Square Assisted Living Center (CSC-EAST LLC ), 600 Lincoln Highway.

  2. St Nicholas Alzheimer Resort (Golden Ark Home For The Elderly Inc ), 353 Dixon Avenue.

The following table examines the percentage of population over 75 residing in a nursing home and the number of nursing home beds available.


Table 8: Nursing Homes, Availability


 



Planning Area Population Over 75 Years Old

Number

Number as percentage of residents over 75 years old

Current Beds Available

Planning Area

1,523

205

13.5%

(DPW)-2003

County

115,867

9,255

8.0%

Population in Nursing Homes

Planning Area

1,523

98

6.4%

(2000 Census)

County

115,867

11,101

9.6%

In November of 2001, North Versailles Township approved the construction of 24 senior apartments (Hawthorne Apartments) at 1600 Rosedale. The preceding numbers indicate an increasing ability of the planning area to specialize in social services and homes for the elderly and demonstrate the planning area’s ability to meet the needs of those requiring some level of personal care or nursing home care.



Multi-Family and Alternative Housing

Table 9: Multi-Family Housing


2000 Rental Units - Housing in Buildings with Three or More Units

 

Total Units

2000

Percent of Total

East McKeesport

1,146

189

16%

North Versailles

5,222

905

17%

Wall

363

25

7%

The term “multi-family” is often interpreted to include an array of housing choices separate from traditional single-family detached housing such as apartment buildings and townhouses. The term, when used in zoning ordinances, typically refers to rented units within a building, excluding duplex units and units with party walls. Therefore, the initial focus of this section will concern the latter definition of multi-family units. The preceding table notes the recent situation within the planning area relating to multi-family units most characteristic of apartment type dwellings and developments. Similar portions of East McKeesport and North Versailles’ housing stock include rented multi-family units with three or more such units within a structure or apartment building. Wall Borough, however, contains far less such housing. Rental units in Wall are primarily housed within duplex and single family detached structures.



Table 10: Construction of Multi-Family Housing


Rental Units in Buildings with Two or More Units

Year Built

North Versailles

East McKeesport

Wall

1999 to March, 2000

0

0

0

1995 to 1998

18

0

0

1990 to 1994

6

0

0

1980-1989

135

27

11

1970-1979

289

59

5

1960-1969

182

38

0

1950-1959

163

23

0

1940-1949

60

47

8

Before 1940

116

93

30

The preceding table details the year in which currently rented units were constructed. It serves to outline the development of rental units, in this case both duplex and apartment-type units.


Many of the units noted in the preceding table, primarily duplex units, were constructed prior to 1940. North Versailles and East McKeesport experienced a spike multi-family housing development in the 1970’s and have experience very little new construction of multi-family units since 1990.
The following tables illustrate changes in the various types of rented multi-family units within the planning area.

Table 11: Trends in Rental Units by Housing Type


Occupied Rental Units Three or More Units

 

1990

2000

Change

East McKeesport

202

189

-13

North Versailles

1013

905

-108

Wall

31

25

-6



Occupied Rental Units - Two Unit

 

1990

2000

Change

East McKeesport

90

98

8

North Versailles

97

64

-33

Wall

22

29

7



Occupied Rental Units Single Family Attached

 

1990

2000

Change

East McKeesport

5

16

11

North Versailles

84

67

-17

Wall

10

17

7

Rental units within apartment buildings (those housed in buildings containing three or more such units) have decreased throughout the planning area. However, while North Versailles has lost multi-family units, including duplex and single family detached units, East McKeesport and Wall have gained numbers of two unit and single-family attached rental dwellings. It is also notable that the census notes no new construction of these units during this period. This inconsistency may signal the conversion of existing single-family homes within the Boroughs to apartments buildings or duplex rental housing.


As initially mentioned in this section, other alternative (alternative to single family detached) forms of housing are often categorized as “multi-family.” North Versailles has experienced the recent development of townhouse or condominium units along Clavale Drive. The units consist of townhouse style homes, most of which are owner-occupied.



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