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City Planning seeks input on changes to Riverfront Zoning


Last updated 1/24/2018 at 8:16pm

Those who own property along Pittsburgh’s 35 miles of riverfront are encouraged to review the Pittsburgh Department of City Planning’s proposed changes to the existing riverfront zoning code and participate in a 30-day public comment period.

City Planning will send letters next week to property owners in and adjacent to the riverfront districts notifying them of the opportunity to comment on the zoning updates. 

The proposed changes were developed over a two-year public process that included a series of community meetings, focus group sessions, stakeholder interviews and public surveys. The updated zoning increases predictability for communities, property and business owners, and developers, and balances the needs of different uses, including residential, commercial, mixed-use and ongoing industrial activities.

“Pittsburgh’s current riverfront zoning doesn’t reflect the full range of ways that Pittsburghers use our riverfronts today.” said City Planning Director Ray Gastil. “The zoning changes are a way to make sure that everyone is better served by being responsive to today’s riverfront businesses, opening up riverfront access to the community, and encouraging smart new development and redevelopment.”

The proposed zoning creates five new zoning districts that recognize and accommodate the varied uses and characteristics of the Pittsburgh’s riverfronts. It also establishes a performance points bonus system that encourages new development to include public benefits such as riverfront trails and amenities, enhanced rainwater management landscaping and increased energy efficiency in exchange for requested additional building height or reductions in the riparian buffer. 

The 30-day commenting period ends on Monday, Feb. 19. The proposed zoning will be the subject of a public hearing before the Pittsburgh City Planning Commission on February 20, at 2 p.m. Property owners in the riverfront zoning districts can review the proposed zoning online at and submit comment via email to City Planning’s project manager Andrea Lavin Kossis at 


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