Pittsburgh Bureau of Police Roadway Safety Guidelines, July 26, 2018

 

The Pittsburgh Bureau of Police completely supports the right of people to protest as guaranteed by the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Our duty is to balance this sacrosanct right with those of others not involved in a particular protest or rally, and to keep everyone as safe as possible. To that end, protests and rallies must be allowed to use city streets and to block intersections.

The Bureau will do everything it can to safely facilitate these protests and rallies as it has for years. It values open communication with protest organizers and has learned through experience that when organizers work cooperatively with the Bureau to it increases safety for all.

However, to ensure the safe flow of traffic at critical locations and times and to insure the safety of all certain guidelines must be established and enforced.

In order to promote consistency, Incident Commanders must have clear operational guidelines on actions that are not permitted and the proper response to them. The following guidelines were put together by Traffic and Crowd management planners to provide clarity to all.

 

The following intersections/ highways and byways are not to be blocked at any time. These areas are to be designated as RED Zones. They include:

ALL Hospital entry and exit routes.

ALL Special Events and their entry and exit routes of any kind occurring in the City.

ALL Tunnels and Bridges that if blocked would have a significant impact on overall public safety.

ALL Port Authority Rail lines

ALL Port Authority Busway Access points

ALL Port Authority “T” Station Entry/Exit points

 

 

These critical intersections are considered RED zones:

1.) Boulevard of the Allies @ Grant Street

2.) Grant St & 1st Ave.

3.) Grant Street & Fort Pitt Blvd

4.) Smithfield Street & Boulevard of the Allies

5.) Smithfield & 1st Ave.

6.) Smithfield & Fort Pitt Blvd.

7.) All intersections along the 7th Ave corridor (from Liberty Ave across Grant Street to the on/off ramps of I579 Crosstown)

 

8.) Second Ave. & Bates Street

9.) Western Avenue – intersections from Allegheny Ave. toward the West End Bridge

 

These Routes/Roadways are considered RED Zones:

 

1.) Route 28

2.) Route 51

3.) Route 65

4.) I279 and its approaches

5.) Washington Boulevard – flood zone area

6.) Allegheny River Boulevard

7.) Bigelow Boulevard – the section of roadway in inbound/outbound directions from Herron Avenue to Downtown

8.) 10th Street Bypass

9.) I376 and its approaches

 

The following highways and byways are not to be blocked during the AM & PM RUSH Hour times (0700-0900 hours and 1600-1800 hours Monday – Friday). These areas are to be designated as YELLOW Zones.

During Non-Rush Times they may be blocked for no more than 15 minutes. Note that key intersections within the Yellow area that are listed above are still considered to be RED Zones.

The following are to be considered YELLOW Zones:

 

1.) Smithfield Street corridor

2.) Grant Street

3.) Liberty Ave.

4.) RT 837/ East & West Carson Street

5.) Boulevard of the Allies corridor

6.) Stanwix Street

7.) Second Ave.

8.) ANY School Zone

 

* PAT (Port Authority Transit) considers a stoppage of a 10-15 minutes to be a “hold” and anytime exceeding that causes delays and rerouting.

NOTE: Officers may use their discretion to make other roadways or intersections off-limits to protests if judged necessary to ensure public safety.