The University Financing Foundation, Inc. (TUFF) is proud to sponsor ‘GLOWLAND‘ for a second year, powered by Oakland Business Improvement District (OBID). GLOWLAND brings dynamic installations to the center of Pittsburgh, enlivening the Oakland area through light, art, movement, and play.
2022, the inaugural year of GLOWLAND, brought over 30,000 guests to the experience. Now in its second year, GLOWLAND is dazzling and brightening the holiday season even more by illuminating and decorating two square miles of the Oakland civic and commercial district, exhibiting installations by local and national designers and artists, and collaborating with Oakland restaurants, businesses, and retailers to showcase the diverse offerings of the district
OBID was created in 1999 to enhance the Central Oakland business district of Pittsburgh. Today, OBID is setting the standard for growth and innovation and ensuring Oakland’s place as Pennsylvania’s Global Center. Through partnerships, initiatives, and events, OBID is reframing the experience of commercial, retail, office, and residential environments, while dismantling oppression, embracing diversity, promoting diverse business, and creating spaces for social, racial, and economic justice.
Over the last decade, TUFF has worked with organizations like OBID and leaders of multiple higher education institutions in Pittsburgh to envision new spaces for research and university-industry collaboration. Throughout these engagements, there has been consistent aim to support the growth of university research enterprises and advance the knowledge-based economy in the region in an inclusive manner. As such, in 2021 TUFF acquired an existing wet lab, classroom, and patient-facing specialty research facility in the Pittsburgh Technology Center (PTC) known as Bridgeside Point 1, along with land for future development, in order to provide a platform from which to continue pursuit of those aims. PTC, located at Technology Drive and Second Avenue, is close to Oakland and Downtown Pittsburgh, the region’s two “Eds & Meds” hubs, and in close proximity to the iconic Hot Metal Bridge that spans the Monongahela River.
Through TUFF’s partner Collaborative Real Estate, we have improved the quality of facility management services at Bridgeside Point 1 while adding community activation and sponsorship opportunities, like for GLOWLAND and the December 2022 Corridors of Opportunity Event, as as part of our mission that connects students, faculty, researchers, community, and industry across multiple disciplines and neighborhoods.
On Friday December 1st, Amanda Weaver, our Community Manager and Activation Specialist at Bridgeside Point 1, represented TUFF and Collaborative Real Estate at GLOW BALL, a fiery night of entertainment, dancing, themed cocktails, and food from Oakland’s finest food purveyors hosted at the iconic Pittsburgh Athletic Association (PAA) building. Guests were greeted by an entertainer on stilts and a 360-selfie camera setup, and enjoyed music, dancing, light-up balloon displays, and holiday food and cocktails throughout the evening.
GLOWLAND runs through January 2, 2024 and events include interactive installations, a winter play day, a dynamic drone show, and historical walking tours. Be sure to check out the full calendar of events here.
Creating vibrant communities of innovation where great ideas are born and groundbreaking research takes place has been TUFF’s focus for over 40 years. Whether developing new facilities or breathing life into existing structures through strategic renovations and activations, we work hand-in-hand with universities and research institutions to create places and spaces where innovation and economic growth thrive. Our non-profit mission drives us to ensure that our clients have every advantage as they bring their vision to life.
Since we were founded in 1982, TUFF has completed 74 projects and invested over $2.8 billion. Yet, TUFF’s impact extends far beyond the buildings and communities we develop. The collaborative and innovative communities we create facilitate research funding, expand the local economy, evolve the campus, strengthen communities, and foster new opportunities for industry growth.