Pittsburgh real estate raising the bar

Pittsburgh is the nation's hottest place for bars per capita.

Commercial real estate investors looking to make a splash in the nightlife and dining market might want to take a look at recent findings from Infogroup Targeting Solutions, an Omaha, Neb.-based research firm for sales and marketing.

The top place in the country for bars is Pittsburgh, according to the report.

"I thought you were going to say churches and trees," Lynn Glover, a spokeswoman for Visit Pittsburgh, told USA Today.

The Steel City was found to have nearly 12 bars per 10,000 people, which beat out a list of mostly Midwestern cities for the top billing.

St. Louis (11.6 bars per 10,000 people) came in second followed by Cleveland (11.5 bars) and Cincinnati (11.5). Milwaukee, home to Miller Brewing Company, finished fifth with 9.5 bars per 10,000 people.

Orlando, Fla., (9.4), Las Vegas (9.1), Portland, Ore., (8.5), Omaha (7.6) and Buffalo, N.Y., (7.1) rounded out the top 10.

Cris Hoel, a Pittsburgh-based lawyer who has worked with bars, restaurants, brewers and beer distributors, told the Pittsburgh Business Times that he wasn't surprised the city topped the list. Hoel noted Pittsburgh's high ranking involves Pennsylvania's sometimes bizarre methods for handing out liquor licenses. He also said the city has seen a recent drop in population, which might skew some of the statistics.

"At the time when liquor licenses were being doled out there were a lot more people around here," he said.

Pizza is helping raise the bar
According to USA Today, cities that have an abundance of bars are more likely to have a slew of options when choosing a place to order pizza. Overall, seven cities are ranked in both the top 10 for bars and pizza joints per capita.

Orlando, which has the most restaurants per capita with almost 100 eateries for every 10,000 restaurants, came in first among pizza places per capita. Orlando was the only city with more than 10 pizza places per 10,000 people. Pittsburgh finished second with 9.9 pizza restaurants per 10,000 people.

There was a significant drop off after the top two spots. Cincinnati and Cleveland, third and fourth in the beer ranking, were next in line at 6.7 pizzerias per 10,000 people. Buffalo was fifth at 6.5.
St. Louis (6.3), Las Vegas (6.3), Tampa, Fla. (6.3), Miami (6) and Minneapolis (4.8) rounded out the top 10.

USA Today reported that St. Louis had the fifth most restaurants per capita in the nation.

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