The Civic Arena has been and always will be a Pittsburgh landmark, a unique feature of our skyline that can never be duplicated - not only of interest to Pittsburghers but also to the thousands of visitors we host each year. No other city has this structure.
Many Pittsburghers view the Igloo as the historic home of the Penguins, and it is. But let's not forget that Sinatra, Elvis and the Beatles graced its stage as well as countless other performers ranging from Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath and RUSH to Willie Nelson, Cher, the Beach Boys as well as our very own Bruno Sammartino.
The new arena will not stand the test of time as well. Granted, it will have that "new car smell," but architecturally it's insignificant and when its time comes the skyline will not miss it one bit.
The powers that be are always quick to raze the past in the name of the political cause du jour. Granted, Wylie Avenue was cut off when the arena was built, but in the past half-century our residents know how to get from point "A" to point "B." What will be gained by reconnecting this single avenue will pale to what will be historically lost by demolishing this structure.
It's obvious that Mayor Luke Ravenstahl's agenda, as well as Messrs. Dan Onorato, R. Daniel Lavelle and Arlen Specter, is politically motivated. For once I wish that the political machine would actually embrace our past rather than giving it its "15 minutes" and then releasing the wrecking ball.
SCOTT C. KERR