More Outdoor Dining Options Coming to Pittsburgh

Several Downtown streets will be reconfigured to expand outdoor seating.
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PHOTOS BY CHUCK BEARD

Diners wanting to return to some of their favorite Downtown restaurants will soon find more tables available outdoors. The Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership is implementing a plan to provide outdoor seating for 72 restaurants and nearby businesses by reconfiguring or eliminating traffic in five areas:

  • 6th Street between Penn Avenue and Fort Duquesne Boulevard will be one-way outbound with the inbound lane used for seating and a bike lane.
  • 6th Street between Penn and Liberty Avenues will be shifted and lanes narrowed to allow for seating.
  • Penn Avenue between 9th and 10th streets will be reduced to one travel lane.
  • Market Square will be closed to all vehicle traffic with a lane open only for emergencies and off-hour deliveries.
  • Strawberry Way between Smithfield and Grant streets will have the same restrictions as Market Square.

“These small businesses represent the lifeblood of our vibrant Downtown, so we are reinventing our street spaces to create outdoor dining experiences that allow restaurants further opportunities to reopen safely while delivering unique destinations in the heart of our city,” says Jeremy Waldrup, president and CEO of the PDP. “These inviting spaces will continue to evolve over the next few weeks as we introduce public art and live music.”

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While restaurants are allowed to offer in-service dining, state-mandated occupancy restrictions cut into their bottom line. David Priselac, owner of Market Street Grocery and Emerson’s, hopes the plan will encourage more customers to return Downtown. “In the evolving situation we find ourselves, these kinds of solutions provide opportunities for us to serve our customers while prioritizing their health and safety. We know customers feel much more comfortable and enjoy being in outdoor spaces right now, so we’re excited to have the room to make that happen.”

The PDP expects to expand its plans to other Downtown locations. The reconfigured street spaces are expected to be in place until late October.

Funding for the reconfiguration came from the Richard Mellon King Foundation and PNC Bank.

Another outdoor dining area opened earlier this month when the 200 block of Oakland Avenue in Oakland was closed to traffic to make room for 50 tables for Fuel and Fuddle and Stack’d Burgers and Beer.

Categories: The 412