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nes ·tle    Ëˆne-sÉ’l  verb ~ to lie in an inconspicuous or sheltered manner Has anyone actually ever found a needle in a haystack? If the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania is like that haystack, then Jim Thorpe might be the proverbial needle. For those of us that have found it, it is simply charming. Nestled quietly […]


in ·de ·fat ·i ·ga ·ble   ËŒin-di-ˈfa-ti-gÉ’-bÉ’l  adjective  – able to work or continue for a very long time without becoming tired Many communities have felt the effects of disaster recovery, from flooding, fires, tornadoes, or winter storms. In 1864, during the Civil War, Confederate troops burned Chambersburg to the ground. The entire town! 537 […]


max ·i ·mize   verb /ˈmaksÉ’ËŒmÄ«z/ -make the best use of How wide is the typical sidewalk in your community? “Not wide enough” is a very typical response. Creating vibrancy on a downtown street is heightened by the ability to have outside dining spill out onto the sidewalks. When someone says they want their town […]


co ·hort   noun /ˈkōhôrt/   – a group of people banded together or treated as a group. “Affordable” and “housing” are two words that, when paired together, routinely cause upheaval in the context of community planning. Affordable housing immediately conjures imagery of dense, poorly cared for, federally subsidized housing projects of the prior century. […]


pan ·o ·ram ·a   /panɒˈramÉ’/   noun  –   an unbroken view of the whole region surrounding an observer The City of Erie has many things to be proud of, not the least of which is the culmination of their two-year bicentennial commemoration of the War of 1812. Of the many unique, special, and […]


di ·chot ·o ·my noun dÄ«-ˈkä-tÉ’-mÄ“ also dÉ’- – something with seemingly contradictory qualities It was 34 ° and a wet snow was falling in the glass canyon created by the six (6) glass and steel office buildings that surround PPG Place in center city Pittsburgh. In the summer, this space is dominated by corporate […]


in ·trep ·id   adjective /inˈtrepid/- fearless, to act in a bold way Coco Chanel is often remembered for saying that “a women needs just three things; a black dress, a black sweater, and, on her arm someone she loves.” Well, if you could alter that slightly to describe streetscape projects across the state, needing […]


pa ·ti ·na noun pÉ’-ˈtÄ“-nÉ’ –   a surface appearance of something grown beautiful especially with age or use Fresh and new have their place in a great downtown and often the fresh and new draw great praise because they represent investment and growth. We should not overlook the weathered and old, however, because  the […]


ex ·pres ·sive adjective /ikˈspresiv/ -effectively conveying thought or feeling, conveying the specified quality or idea Signage can be many things; bold, subtle, effective, confusing, large, small, light, dark, and occasionally, if we are lucky, it’s effective. On a very rare occasion, signage can be expressive. Think about your most memorable sign in your own […]


bu ·col ·ic adjective /byoÍžoˈkälik/ – of or relating to the pleasant aspects of the countryside Chainsaw carving is a pastime that uses a razor sharp chain traveling more than 50 feet per second as a mechanism for the creation of beauty, whimsy, and sense of place. Sounds neat, right? If you missed the 14th […]