Pittsburgh established itself as a center for industry due, in part, to its strategic location at the confluence of three rivers and the region’s abundance of coal, oil, limestone, and sand. These assets paired with the ingenuity of early industrialists and entrepreneurs, the skills and manpower afforded by a large and diverse immigrant workforce, and a tenacity for hard work forged Pittsburgh’s success as a manufacturing powerhouse. By 1911, Pittsburgh was producing half the nation’s steel, but that progress came at a price.
Steel mills, factories and coal mines contributed to air and water pollution, creating smoke and grime that settled with such thickness that streetlights were lit by 3 p.m. and workers changed their sooty shirts after returning to their offices from lunch. Visiting the city in 1868, James Parton, writing for Atlantic Monthly, described the city as “…Hell with the lid taken off.”
Civic and business leaders recognized that the city’s image would impact future growth, launching efforts in 1946 to clean and revitalize the region’s urban center through smoke control, restoration and redevelopment projects, and brownfield site reclamation. After the collapse of the steel industry in the late 1970s, Pittsburgh continued the hard work of reinventing itself. As a result, the city is well recognized and widely ranked for many reasons, including being a center for finance, education, healthcare, technology, energy, and sustainability – and one of the Most Livable Cities.
The stories about the people, places and projects that continue Pittsburgh’s international contributions to transformation towards a more sustainable world include:
A RESILIENT, SUSTAINABLE CITY
Since 2014, Pittsburgh has been part of 100 Resilient Cities, an effort pioneered by The Rockefeller Foundation (100RC). These efforts align with commitments Mayor William Peduto announced in 2015 for City government-owned facilities, infrastructure, and fleet to achieve by 2030. These include:
- 100% Renewable Energy Supply
- 50% Energy Consumption Reduction
- 50% Water Use Reduction
- 100% Fossil Fuel Free Fleet
- 100% Diversion from Landfill
- 50% Citywide Transportation Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reduction
- Creating a Fossil Fuel Divestment Strategy for City of Pittsburgh Funds
The Pittsburgh 2030 District comprises 550+ buildings that have voluntarily committed to 50 percent reductions in energy use, water consumption and transportation emissions (below baselines) by the year 2030. The Pittsburgh 2030 District is the largest of the North American 2030 Districts.
UNIVERSITY RESEARCH IN SUSTAINABILITY & GREEN TECHNOLOGIES
As an energy-producing region with its roots in fossil fuels, Pittsburgh is on the forefront of change as the world begins to make fundamental transformations in how energy is used and produced. With 12 colleges and universities in the City limits alone, top minds are figuring out now how to create a sustainable future with a wide variety of approaches, including traditional environmental cleanup, energy efficiency, renewable energy, microgrids, smart traffic signals, autonomous vehicles, greener products, and even new business models. This research is also feeding the innovative technologies of the future.
From startups to offices for big name tech companies, Pittsburgh has a wealth of talent looking to solve the environmental and social challenges of our age. These include companies seeking to create energy from more renewable sources: WindStax, Thar Geothermal, and SolePower; Interphase Materials, Hibersense, and others making systems more efficient; and Thread, making fabric from discarded plastics while creating jobs around the world.
Pittsburgh’s sustainable and progressive redevelopment of buildings and brownfields made it a known green building leader, with continued place-based innovation in the works. Pittsburgh boasts two of the world’s few Living Buildings —with more shaping up— and is home to a number of local ecodistricts. The newly completed Frankie Pace Park reconnects downtown with the Hill District, an adjacent neighborhood previously fragment by urban renewal. At 178 acres, Pittsburgh’s Hazelwood Green site is one of the largest urban brownfields. Envisioned as a carbon neutral community, the former steel mill site is just 15 minutes from Downtown Pittsburgh.
RIVERFRONTS, PARKS, AND GREEN INFRASTRUCTURE
Pittsburgh riverbanks once choked by industry are still being (re)developed in a way that reinstitutes riparian ecology and increases habitat. Over the past 15 years, $130 million has been invested in the 13-mile Three Rivers Park, which comprises at least six other local parks or commons. Efforts are underway to continue trails and greenways through other neighborhoods. Pittsburgh has five urban parks totaling almost 2,000 acres. In 2016, 660 acres of Hays Wood parkland were added to the City’s asset list, elevating Pittsburgh’s parkland tally into the top five of peer cities.
In Frick Park, a living, breathing building now serves as a hub for immersive environmental education for Pittsburgh city school children and as a gathering place for community programs. The Frick Environmental Center has achieved the rigorous standards of both LEED Platinum and the Living Building Challenge™ and is the world’s first municipally owned, free and open to the public, Living Building Challenge-certified project.
PittsburghGreenStory.com is your resource for history, story leads, and the latest developments in the ongoing story of Pittsburgh’s environmental transformation. Contact: email@example.comDownload the PDF
Once the industrial hub for production of steel, iron and glass, Pittsburgh is now a center for technology, robotics, finance, medicine and tourism. As authentic as it is awesome, the strength of Pittsburgh lies in the friendliness of its people and the beauty of its landscape. Add one-of-a-kind attractions, award-winning chefs, interesting neighborhoods and amazing architecture all conveniently located in a safe and walkable city, and you’ll find that Pittsburgh makes for an ideal city to live and a wonderful travel destination.
Harper’s Bazaar named Pittsburgh among the 17 Best Places to Travel in 2017. It had a similar honor when Travel + Leisure noted the “Steel City reforged itself into the Arts City” in its prestigious list of Best Places to Travel in the World in 2016. The bragging rights don’t stop there: The well-regarded restaurant review institution, Zagat, recently named Pittsburgh as the nation’s No. 1 food city; and Conde Nast Traveler named Pittsburgh International Airport one of the “10 Best Airports in the United States.”
Pittsburgh is also wonderful place to live, and has the distinction of being repeatedly dubbed “America’s Most Livable City” by several outlets. The affordability factor – combined with the city’s rich cultural offerings – contribute to making it an ideal place to live. HSH.com, the nation’s largest publisher of mortgage and consumer loan information, ranks Pittsburgh as one of the most affordable metro area in the U.S. Forbes magazine says Pittsburgh is among the cities that give the most bang for your buck. Today, young people are relocating here, and it’s perhaps no surprise as Infogroup ranks Pittsburgh among the top 10 hippest U.S. cities today.
Yes, Pittsburgh is packed with possibilities. Visitors and residents alike enjoy the plentiful and beautiful public parks, along with the warm, friendly feeling they get when strolling through city streets that are known for amazing public art and beautiful, historic buildings.
A thriving Cultural District in the downtown city center offers performances by the world-class Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, Pittsburgh Ballet, PNC Broadway Series, Pittsburgh Opera and Pittsburgh Public Theater. The city’s jazz legacy is preserved at Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild and clubs throughout the city. Art lovers love to explore the city’s many eclectic art galleries and be amazed at the astounding collections of The Andy Warhol Museum, Mattress Factory and The Frick Pittsburgh. Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens are glorious to visit any time of year, while the new Pittsburgh Botanical Gardens keep getting lovelier with every season.
Family fun abounds in Pittsburgh, which is dubbed “Kidsburgh.” A host of family-friendly attractions make multi-generational outings fun for all ages. There’s Kennywood Park, a national historic park that is a family tradition… the National Aviary has more than 150 species from around the world… Pittsburgh Zoo and PPG Aquarium is home to one of the best zoos for kids, according to Parents magazine… Carnegie Science Center has four floors of hand-on exhibits, plus roboworld and an authentic Cold World submarine… and the award-winning Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh is fun for the whole family.
No visit is complete to Pittsburgh without a trek up the slopes of Mt. Washington aboard the Duquesne Incline, beautifully restored cable cars used by commuters and visitors since 1877. Soak in the panoramic view of Pittsburgh and then dine along “Restaurant Row” to see the amazing skyline – what USA Today calls among the most beautiful views in America.
For an invigorating jog, walk or bike, just select any starting point along the city’s 24 miles of scenic riverfront trails. There are plentiful designated bike lanes in and around the city, with dozens of places to rent bicycles. Grab a paddle and get out on the river with Kayak Pittsburgh for spectacular views of the skyline. Or rent paddle boards from Stand Up Pittsburgh and climb some serious city steps – there-s 712 sets of them – many that lead to amazing views.
Hospitality abounds in Pittsburgh’s diverse ethnic neighborhoods, offering visitors a sampling of food, culture, festivals and celebrations inspired and influenced by the city’s history and ethnic heritage.
For the sports minded, the Pittsburgh Pirates play at PNC Park, a classically designed ballpark that opens to dramatic views of Pittsburgh’s skyline. It is consistently named among the best ballparks in the nation. Heinz Field, home of the Pittsburgh Steelers, is considered a Mecca for Steelers Nation – the diaspora of Pittsburgh Steelers fans living throughout the nation. And the Pittsburgh Penguins’ home ice is at PPG Paints Arena.
The new Pittsburgh is “a world away from its dirty industrial past, the city has transformed itself into a top travel destination,” reports Travel + Escape magazine. Indeed. Pittsburgh’s rolling hills, shimmering rivers and stunning skyline will delight. Pittsburgh today is remade, reimagined and better than ever.
For more details, go to www.visitpittsburgh.com.
Top 10 Reasons to Visit Pittsburgh — VisitPittsburgh.com
- Breathtaking Views: When a writer from The New York Times said Pittsburgh was “the only city with an entrance,” he nailed it. The stunning skyline bursts into view when visitors arrive from Pittsburgh International Airport – and it’s just one of the things that makes Pittsburgh unique. Head to the top of Mt. Washington to find what USA Today called “one of the best views in America.”
- Only in Pittsburgh Excitement: From the Andy Warhol Museum to the Duquesne Incline, Wigle Whiskey and more, visitors are sure to be entertained by the many fascinating experiences and attractions they can find only in Pittsburgh. Add an extra day to your trip and explore Beyond Pittsburgh, where additional one-of-a-kind attractions, like Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater, are waiting to be explored.
- Great Green Lawn: No other major city has a state park that’s located smack-dab in the heart of it. The tip of the 34-acre Point State Park is home to Pittsburgh’s most recognizable landmark—The Fountain—which sits at the confluence of three beautiful rivers.
- Amazing Views: Drive or, even better, take one of the two inclines up to Mt. Washington to see why USA Today calls this vantage point among the “Top 10 most beautiful views” in the country.
- Culinary Delights: Reservations are highly recommended. Check out the red-hot culinary scene and find out why Pittsburgh is consistently ranked one of the top food cities in America. From James Beard Award-nominated chefs to new restaurants and concepts mixed with traditional culinary staples, there are plenty of ways to satisfy a hungry appetite in the ‘Burgh.
- Family Friendly: With so many kid-friendly attractions, Pittsburgh is KidsBURGH®! Pack your bags and explore the National Aviary, Carnegie Museums of Art and Natural History, Kennywood, Heinz History Center, Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh Zoo and PPG Aquarium, Gateway Clipper Fleet, Sandcastle Water Park, Carnegie Science Center, Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens and more!
- Arts and Culture: The arts are alive in Pittsburgh. Pittsburgh’s 14-square-block Cultural District alone is home to nine theaters ranging from Broadway productions, orchestra, opera, ballet, cabaret, improv and even comedy. Add to that the many renowned galleries and museums in the area and you’ll see for yourself why arts enthusiasts flock to Pittsburgh. And, this year, visitors won’t want to miss the 58th Carnegie International, coming to the Carnegie Museum of Art Sept. 24, 2022 – April 2, 2023.
- Ninety Neighborhoods: Pittsburghers are proud of their city, and nowhere is that more evident than in the 90 unique neighborhoods which comprise it. From hip and trendy to quiet and secluded, visitors will appreciate the culture and friendly feel Pittsburgh’s neighborhoods offer. Bonus – it’s easy to walk, bike, bus or drive between many neighborhoods.
- Pedal On: Biking reigns supreme in the City of Bridges. With more than 24 miles of riverfront trails and the Great Allegheny Passage, a 150-mile rail trail that meets the C&O Canal Towpath connecting Pittsburgh with Washington, D.C., Pittsburgh is a must-see destination for bike enthusiasts. Bring your own or rent a quality ride from Golden Triangle Bike. Looking for a more leisurely experience? Hop on one of the city’s POGOH bikes, available at stations throughout Pittsburgh, and explore the city.
- THE Sports City: Pittsburgh is not just a sports city, it’s THE sports city. Home to six-time Super Bowl champions Pittsburgh Steelers, five-time Stanley Cup champions Pittsburgh Penguins and five-time World Series champions Pittsburgh Pirates – the city loves a good game. Take a tour of the stadiums, including the Pirates’ ballpark, PNC Park, which is consistently named one of the best in the MLB. Then, head over to Western PA Sports Museum, part of the Senator Heinz History Center, to discover even more about the area’s deep-rooted sports history.
Author: Stephan Bontrager
A Big Step Forward: Point State Park
Pittsburgh’s riverfronts have undergone a long transformation from being used primarily for industry in the first half of the 20th century to the green public parks, trails, and facilities of today. The city’s riverbanks along its three rivers—the Allegheny, Monongahela and Ohio—are a patchwork quilt of publicly- and privately owned land, lined with industrial and transportation infrastructure that has created challenges for interconnected riverfront redevelopment across property lines. Despite the obstacles, Pittsburgh has seen a remarkable renaissance along its waterfronts.
The city’s modern riverfront transformation began with the construction of Point State Park during the first “Pittsburgh Renaissance” movement of the 1940s and 50s by then-mayor David L. Lawrence. The 36-acre park at the confluence of Pittsburgh’s three rivers (the Allegheny, Monongahela and Ohio) was conceived as a transformational urban renewal project that would create public green space at the tip of the Pittsburgh peninsula. Championed by a bipartisan coalition of Lawrence, banker Richard King Mellon, and the Allegheny Conference on Community Development, Point State Park was created on land used primarily as a rail yard and acquired through eminent domain. Construction took several decades and the park was officially declared finished and opened to the public in 1974 with the debut of its signature feature, a 150-foot fountain at the westernmost tip of the park. After its opening, Point State Park saw near-constant use and subsequent deferred maintenance. In 2007 as part of the Pittsburgh 250th anniversary celebration, the park underwent a $35 million top-to-bottom renovation led by the Allegheny Conference, Riverlife, and the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources which owns and operates the park. The renovation concluded in 2013 and was the largest park restoration project in Pennsylvania history.
Situated between the 6th and 7th Street bridges on the north bank of the Allegheny River, Allegheny Landing was dedicated in 1984 as one of Pittsburgh’s first modern riverfront parks and one the nation’s first urban riverfront sculpture parks. It was established in recognition of Pittsburgh’s riverfront potential for recreation and incorporating arts within the urban landscape and has since become a well-used node of Pittsburgh’s riverfront trail system. Project open to the public: 1984; Renovation began: 2013; Renovation partners: Friends of Allegheny Landing, City of Pittsburgh, Carnegie Museum of Art, Riverlife
Creating Access Through Trails
Western Pennsylvania’s hilly topography meant that highways, railways and other transportation infrastructure were often built along the flat riverfronts throughout the 19th and 20th centuries, with the unintended result of cutting off many neighborhoods from the waterfront. Access was also challenged by industrial sites like steel mills, warehouses and rail yards which used the riverfronts for transportation, manufacturing and discharge. In the late 1990s creating access to the waterfront was a priority of Mayor Tom Murphy (who served from 1994-2006) and trail advocacy group Friends of the Riverfront. Trail development at the Station Square site (see below) on the Mon River became a starting point for the Three Rivers Heritage Trail. The Heritage Trail expanded along Pittsburgh’s South Side, first including a span from 4th to 9th Street built by the City of Pittsburgh with support from Laurel Foundation and other stakeholders. The trail was expanded between 9th and 18th Streets by the City in 1991 after urging from Friends of the Riverfront, and entered Southside Riverfront Park in 1999. The Three Rivers Heritage Trail continues to branch and grow throughout Western Pennsylvania, now encompassing 24 miles of riverfront including 13 miles in the Downtown area. Friends of the Riverfront also established 23 access points to the river known as the Three Rivers Water Trail for non-motorized recreation on the rivers in the early 1990s, and the organization continues to coordinate trail stewardship and development efforts throughout the region.
Riverfront destinations in the 1990s: Washington’s Landing, Pittsburgh Technology Center and others
Two significant projects during the tenure of Mayor Sophie Masloff (who served from 1988-1994) changed Pittsburgher attitudes about development near the rivers. During the 1980s and 1990s, Pittsburgh’s Urban Redevelopment Authority advanced a redevelopment plan for Herr’s Island, once blighted by former cattle stockyards, meatpacking and rendering plants, metal salvaging plants and other industrial uses. The redevelopment plan called for brownfield remediation, new roadways, and parks and trails, an overall public investment of $26.5 million. Additional housing and commercial development brought the total cost of development to over $70 million and resulted in establishing Herr’s Island (renamed Washington’s Landing) as a premiere piece of real estate. Over on the northern bank of the Monongahela, the Pittsburgh Technology Center was built on a portion of the former J&L Steel Mill site in the neighborhood of South Oakland. The 48 acre park opened in 1989 and has been home to research and tech laboratories for Carnegie Mellon University, University of Pittsburgh and others.
Across the Allegheny River in the Strip District neighborhood, the former Armstrong Cork Factory sat empty and deteriorating after closing in 1974. The Frederick Osterling-designed building saw new life when it was purchased in 2005 by McCaffery Interests and Big River Development. The new owners invested more than $60 million in refurbishing the building into condominiums, using historic tax credits from the National Park Service and establishing a popular residential complex on the riverfront.
The former Pittsburgh & Lake Erie Railroad Complex on the southern bank of the Monongahela River was redeveloped into an indoor/outdoor retail and entertainment complex called Station Square in the mid-1990s by Pittsburgh History and Landmarks Foundation and Forest City Enterprises. A public landing and marina were added in 2005.
The Aluminum Company of America, or Arconic, built the Arconic Corporate Center in 1998 on what would become the North Shore and relocated its corporate headquarters there from downtown Pittsburgh. The recognizable wave-form glass façade was envisioned by then-chairman and Riverlife co-founder Paul O’Neill, and featured many green building features as a precursor to LEED green building practices being adopted across the country in the early 2000s.
Allegheny Riverfront Park is a linear riverfront park with ramp and stair connections along the southern bank of the Allegheny River adjacent to Pittsburgh’s Cultural District. The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust, under the leadership of then-president Carol Brown, commissioned a collaboration in the 1990s between artist Ann Hamilton and landscape architect Michael Van Valkenburgh to create river access and public open space, and the park opened to the public in 1998 at an estimated cost of $25 million.
1999 Creation of Riverlife and a master plan for riverfront redevelopment
As Pittsburgh’s riverfront redevelopment opportunities began to grow in sites formerly occupied by industry and blight, community leaders saw the importance of forming a task force that would oversee a comprehensive master planning process for the Downtown riverfronts. In 1999 civic leaders including Mayor Murphy, philanthropist Teresa Heinz, president of the Heinz Endowments Maxwell King, PNC president James E. Rohr, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette editor John G. Craig Jr., and former Alcoa chairman and Secretary of the U.S. Treasury Paul O’Neill came together to form the 40-member Riverlife Task Force comprised of riverfront property owners, elected officials, landscape architects, and community members. One of Riverlife’s first initiatives was selecting architecture firm Chan Krieger Sieniewicz of Cambridge, Mass. from a national request for qualifications process to lead the vision planning process.
After conducting hundreds of public meetings with Pittsburghers, Riverlife Task Force and Chan Krieger Sieniewicz released A Vision Plan for Pittsburgh’s Riverfronts in 2000, which called for the creation of Three Rivers Park, a 13-mile loop of interconnected riverfront trails and public open spaces. The vision plan was accepted by the City of Pittsburgh, and Riverlife (which shortened its name in 2008) continues to work with city administrations, property owners and developers to oversee the creation of Three Rivers Park. An economic impact study completed by Sasaki Associates (Boston, Ma.) in 2015 revealed that since 2000, $129 million invested in building Pittsburgh’s riverfront park system has helped to catalyze nearly $2.6 billion in riverfront development activity and nearly $4.1 billion in total riverfront and adjacent development. Just analyzing the $2.6 billion riverfront yield, the ratio between park investment and riverfront development has been 20:1.
Other notable Riverlife advocacy and planning projects projects included working with PennDOT in 2003 to create a new type of bridge barrier that would preserve scenic river viewsheds while improvements were underway on the Fort Pitt Bridge and adjacent Parkway areas. In October of 2005, Riverlife and Alcoa Foundation publicly launched the West End Pedestrian Bridge Competition. The competition invited entrants internationally to envision a new pedestrian crossing at the West End Bridge, creating new connections to both land and water. The winning design was submitted by the firm Endres Ware and is currently being evaluated for implementation.
Other Significant Projects
Dramatic changes were made to the northern banks of the Allegheny and Ohio Rivers in Pittsburgh’s North Side during the near-simultaneous construction of the Heinz Field football stadium and PNC Park baseball stadium in 2000 and the demolition of Three Rivers Stadium in 2001. Pittsburghers voted down a referendum that would have increased sales tax to finance the construction of the new sports facilities and public amenities; however the construction moved forward when elected officials announced a “Plan B” that allocated $809 million of Regional Asset District funding to make the North Side improvements and expand the David L. Lawrence Convention Center. Named the North Shore, the new riverfront neighborhood included a $35 million, 11.25 acre riverfront park and trail built by the Sports and Exhibition Authority between the two new stadiums and featured outdoor recreational amenities, public art, water features and a fishing pier.
The Mon Wharf Landing is a 2017-foot linear riverfront park that was constructed on the Monongahela Wharf on the northern edge of the Mon River downtown. A $3 million joint project between Riverlife, the Pittsburgh Parking Authority, PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, PennDOT and City of Pittsburgh, the Landing opened to the public in 2009. Planned connections on both ends of the landing will connect it to Point State Park (on the western end) and the Smithfield Street Bridge and Great Allegheny Passage (eastern end).
Rivers Casino amphitheater: Rivers Casino’s privately owned, public riverfront amphitheater was completed in 2009 by Gaming Holdings, and has become a landmark destination for area residents and visitors alike. The design includes a riverfront promenade, 1,200-seat outdoor amphitheater facing the Ohio River, riverfront lighting and dock for boat access. The casino’s award-winning landscape design by Pittsburgh-based Strada also incorporates a stormwater management system. Park opened to public: 2009; Estimated Project cost: $3.5 million
South Shore Riverfront Park: At the site of the former Jones & Laughlin steel mill in Pittsburgh’s South Side neighborhood, a former mill barge dock has been converted to a riverfront park that straddles a railroad tunnel and overcomes a 40’ drop in elevation to provide access to the Monongahela River. The park provides a riverfront face to the adjacent SouthSide Works retail and entertainment complex. Switchback terraces connect upper and lower plazas to create an outdoor public space for recreation, relaxation and special events, and interpretive elements and unearthed artifacts on display pay tribute to the site’s steel history. Park opened: 2012; Estimated Project cost: $13 million. Project Partners: Soffer Organization, Urban Redevelopment Authority of Pittsburgh, Riverlife. Related: The Hot Metal Bridge – originally built to transport molten steel from one plant to another via railcar – now connects the SouthSide Works residential and retail complex to the Pittsburgh Technology Center across the Monongahela River. A bike/ped walkway officially opened in 2007 alongside the vehicular lanes provides for safe pedestrian traffic. Access ramps are integrated with public parks on each side of the river. Project opened to public: 2007; Project cost: $11.6 million; Length: 1,052 feet; Project Partners: City of Pittsburgh, Allegheny County, Urban Redevelopment Authority, PennDOT, Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, Pittsburgh History and Landmarks Foundation, Allegheny Trail Alliance.
Building on the success of the opening of South Shore Riverfront Park in 2010 and the park’s boat landing in 2013, a new marina opened in June, 2015 with 360 boat slips. The marina is another waterfront amenity that connects the retail and residential activity of the SouthSide Works complex down to the riverfront.
David L. Lawrence Convention Center Riverfront Plaza: Pittsburgh’s David L. Lawrence Convention Center debuted in 2003 and was immediately recognized internationally for its sustainable design as the largest Gold LEED-rated building in the world. After an extensive planning period and public process, the Convention Center Riverfront Plaza broke ground in 2009 and was opened to the public by the Sports and Exhibition Authority in 2011, completing the Convention Center’s connection to the riverfront. Park opened: 2011; Estimated Project Cost: $9.5 million
Please note: Due to space limitations, this narrative is not able to include every Pittsburgh riverfront development of the past several decades. This outline focuses on projects that have created significant public open space along the riverfront and/or catalyzed significant adjacent riverfront development in the latter half of the 20th century and first half of the 21st.
 http://www.pgh-sea.com/ccriverfrontpark.htmDownload the PDF
- Accessible to Attendees: Pittsburgh is conveniently located within 500 miles of nearly half of the population of U.S., a 90-minute flight for half of North America and a six-hour car or train ride from nine states, Washington, D.C. and Canada.
- Compact, Walkable Downtown: There’s an exciting mix of culture, world-class hotels and amazing dining, all nestled within 30 square blocks at the heart of the urban core. Travel throughout downtown and to the North Shore is free on board our “T” subway system.
- David L. Lawrence Convention Center: With simple floor plans, high ceilings, natural lighting, ventilated halls – and exceptional views of the mighty rivers, the Platinum and Gold LEED-certified David L. Lawrence Convention Center is ideal.
- Award-Winning Culinary Scene: Pittsburgh boasts a highly acclaimed culinary scene. Zagat named Pittsburgh the #1 City for Food in the country and the 2016 James Beard Awards recognized several Pittsburgh chefs for their outstanding talents.
- Culture, Culture and More Culture: The downtown Cultural District features 10 theaters nestled among eclectic art galleries, shops, restaurants and more. Pittsburgh consistently receives praise as one of America’s “most cultured cities” and one of the nation’s “most creative cities.”
- Fun for All Ages: Carnegie Museums of Art and Natural History offers the third-largest collection of real dinosaur bones on exhibit, plus a fantastic collection of Impressionist and post-Impressionist art. In addition, the Carnegie Science Center provides hands-on fun, as does the Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh. For grown-up fun, Rivers Casino is the place to gamble, dine and be entertained. See the cityscape from Mt. Washington via the Duquesne Incline or via the water aboard the Gateway Clipper fleet or Just Ducky Tours.
- Affordable: Moneybox called Pittsburgh “the most affordable city in the world.” There’s no sales tax on clothing and shoes and that means big savings for the shoppers in your group.
- Unique Off-Site Venues: Whether hosting an intimate dinner or entertaining thousands, Pittsburgh offers a variety of locations to choose from. Sip local wine and learn about legendary Pittsburgh Pirates’ Roberto Clemente at the Roberto Clemente Museum. Immerse your attendees in the arts with an event at The Andy Warhol Museum. Host an event at quintessential sporting facilities Heinz Field, PPG Paints Arena or PNC Park.
- World–Class Accommodations: Convenience is key and Pittsburgh’s got it with 18 hotels within walking distance of the David L. Lawrence Convention Center, restaurants, attractions, theaters and more.
- Hospitable Community: When you visit or bring a convention to Pittsburgh, you’ll find a warm, friendly community awaits. People in Pittsburgh will go out of their way to be helpful, and will smile as they pass you on the street.
Pittsburgh is one of the hottest destinations in the country with plenty to offer visitors, including breathtaking views, fantastic hotels and accommodations, an award-winning food scene and so much more.
But, it’s the experiences and activities that visitors can see, do and find Only in Pittsburgh that make a visit to the region truly stand out. Below is simply a snapshot of the experiences awaiting visitors in Pittsburgh.
- The Andy Warhol Museum, the most comprehensive museum in the world dedicated to a single artist
- Great Allegheny Passage, the start of a 150-mile, non-motorized path that meets to the C&O Canal Towpath, connecting Pittsburgh to Washington, D.C.
- The Monongahela Incline, the oldest continually operating funicular in America, and the Duquesne Incline, that leads to what USA Today named one of the America’s Top 10 Most Stunning Views
- Senator John Heinz History Center, the largest history museum in the state of Pennsylvania and home to the museum within a museum, the Western PA Sports Museum, and the largest collection of original items from ‘Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood’, the beloved television show’s artifacts
- The National Aviary, America’s only independent nonprofit zoo dedicated to birds
- The University of Pittsburgh’s Cathedral of Learning, home of the Nationality Rooms, authentic classrooms used for educational classes, and the tallest educational building in the U.S.
- Bicycle Heaven Museum and Shop, the world’s largest display of bicycles
- Roberto Clemente Museum, a museum dedicated to the life and career of the former Pittsburgh Pirates baseball player
- Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix, the largest vintage car race and only car race held on city streets
- Trundle Manor, the headquarters of the Secret Society of Odd Acquisition, houses the finest and most insane collection of frightening and weird items on display in Pennsylvania
- Picklesburgh, a dill-icious event voted the #1 Specialty Food Festival in America by USA Today readers that focuses on all things pickles
- 446 bridges, one of the cities with the most bridges
- The Murals of Maxo Vanka, Maksimilijan Vanka, a celebrated Croatian painter who immigrated to Pennsylvania during the turmoil of the 1930s, was invited to paint the walls of the St. Nicholas Croatian church, in the Millvale neighborhood, and given artistic license to not be shy about his politics. So instead of the typical Catholic iconography, you see very progressive images of the Croatian experience, complete with coal mining and depictions of World War.
- Barrel & Flow Fest, formerly Fresh Fest Beer Fest, the first beer festival dedicated to Black brewers, craft beer enthusiasts and artists
- Saint Anthony’s Chapel, home of the largest collection of religious artifacts outside the Vatican
- Wigle Whiskey, Pittsburgh’s first distillery since before Prohibition
- Canton Avenue, the steepest street in America with a 37% grade
- Carnegie Mellon University, a private, global research university that stands among the world’s most renowned educational institutions
- Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh, the largest Silver LEED® certified museum in America
- The Tower at PNC Plaza, the world’s Greenest Skyscraper
- Only convention center in the world with both Gold and Platinum LEED® certification – David L. Lawrence Convention Center
- Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens, first and only greenhouse with Platinum LEED® certification