Washington's Landing

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Washington's Landing
Herrs Island
Neighborhood of Pittsburgh
Washington's Landing from the 31st Street Bridge, with Downtown in the distance.
Washington's Landing from the 31st Street Bridge, with Downtown in the distance.
Pgh locator herrs island.svg
Coordinates: 40°28′00″N 79°58′30″W / 40.4667°N 79.975°W / 40.4667; -79.975
Country United States
State Pennsylvania
County Allegheny County
City Pittsburgh

Washington's Landing (previously known as Herrs Island) is an island in the Allegheny River in Pittsburgh in the U.S. state of Pennsylvania. It is officially considered part of the Troy Hill neighborhood.[2]

Herrs Island[edit]

The 33rd Street Railroad Bridge is a disused bridge that connects with the island. The photo was taken from the island itself.

The island was originally named Herrs Island, after an early owner, Benjamin Herr. Herr used the island for farming. Later, the island was used extensively for industrial purposes, including stockyards, saw mills, soap works, and the Pennsylvania Railroad.[3]

George Washington reputedly slept on the island after his raft capsized in the Allegheny River while on a diplomatic mission to the French at Fort Le Boeuf near Lake Erie during the French and Indian War.[4] This story led to the renaming of the island on October 24, 1987.


As a result of the industrial activity, Herrs Island was a brownfield site. By the 1970s most industrial activity on the island had left. During the 1980s and 1990s a major redevelopment effort was undertaken after a long study of best uses.[5]

The island is now a showcase project of urban redevelopment for the City of Pittsburgh.[6] It now a mixed use community, home to townhomes and business parks, as well as a marina, the Three Rivers Rowing Association, and the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy.

Head of the Ohio[edit]

Since 1987 the island and piers have hosted the starting point for the annual Head of the Ohio crew race. The Three Rivers rowing club also maintains their boathouses on the island.


External links[edit]

Media related to Washington's Landing at Wikimedia Commons