19 imagesJun 7, 2010 - Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, U.S., - The Strip District is a neighborhood in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania in the United States. It is a one-half square mile area of land northeast of the central business district bordered to the north by the Allegheny River and to the south by portions of the Hill District. The Strip District runs between 11th and 33rd Streets and includes three main thoroughfares -- Smallman St., Penn Ave., and Liberty Ave. -- as well as various side streets. In the early 19th century, the Strip District was home to many mills and factories as its location along the Allegheny River made for easy transportation of goods and shipping of raw materials. It was the home of the Fort Pitt Foundry, source of large cannon before and during the American Civil War, including a 20 inch bore Rodman Gun. Early tenants of the Strip District included U.S. Steel, Westinghouse, The Pittsburgh Reduction Company (ALCOA), and later The H.J. Heinz Company, famous ketchup and condiment manufacturer. The shipping infrastructure built around the manufacturing companies naturally lead to an increase in other types of merchants setting up shop in the Strip. By the early 20th century the Strip District became a vibrant network of wholesalers--mostly fresh produce, meat, and poultry dealers. Soon auction houses rose around the wholesale warehouses and many restaurants and grocery stores were built to feed hungry shift workers at any hour of the day. By the 1920s The Strip District was the economic center of Pittsburgh. In the mid-to-late 20th century fewer of the Strip's products were being shipped by rail and boat, causing many produce sellers and wholesalers to leave the area for other space with easier access to highways or where there was more land available for expansion. Today in the Strip District there are still several wholesalers and produce dealers, but some estimates say more than 80% of the produce industry left the area.