In the Know Business Newsletter

Alerts & Notices

Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership’s Annual Meeting: Please join the Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership for our Annual Meeting on Wednesday, March 20, 2019, at 3:30 p.m. with a cocktail reception to follow immediately, hosted at the Pittsburgh Playhouse at Point Park University, 350 Forbes Avenue, Downtown Pittsburgh.

To purchase PDP member tickets, click here. (Not sure if you’re a member? Check our Directory.)
To purchase individual tickets, click here.
To purchase group tickets in blocks of ten (10), click here.

2019 St. Patrick’s Day Parade: The St. Patrick’s Parade begins at 10:00 a.m. on Saturday, March 16 and will run through Downtown Pittsburgh and the Strip District. The parade happens rain, snow, or shine, so be prepared and dress appropriately. Open containers are not allowed on the parade route and officers will be present. About 200,000 people are expected to attend. Sheraden native Mike Gallagher will serve as grand marshal.

Parade Route: Parade formation will begin at the Greyhound Bus Station at the intersection of Liberty Avenue and 11th Street.  Staging will take place from the bus station and away from Downtown to 26th Street.  The parade will proceed from the intersection of Liberty and 11th Streets to Grant Street to the Boulevard of the Allies, where it will turn right.  Proceed on the Boulevard of the Allies to the Reviewing Stand at Stanwix Street, then disburse at Commonwealth Place.

Market Square: A family-friendly event will be held from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., with Irish dancers and live entertainment. This year, there will NOT be the Irish Fair in the Square Activities taking place after 2:00 p.m. Additionally, while restaurants and bars with existing patio permits may serve on their patios as usual, open containers are NOT permitted in the Square. 

Downtown Parking: Street parking will be heavily restricted. Visit the Parking Authority website for a list of downtown lots and garages and their rates.

Public Transportation: Check the Port Authority website for bus and T schedules. Dozens of bus routes serving Downtown and the Strip District will be detoured or have temporary stop changes on parade morning. The T will have two-car trains running all day.

Free South Side Shuttles: Free parking will be offered at the Second Avenue lot across the Monongahela River. The shuttle originates at the Second Avenue lot and makes four stops: First Ave. garage and T station; Bedford Square (South 12th Street); South 18th Street at Sidney Street; and South 21st at East Carson. New this year is a second shuttle that will focus on the eastern end of Carson Street. There will be stops at two garages that will circulate people who choose to park there.

Shuttles and stops will be marked with shamrocks.

Parking will be enforced at street meters throughout the day.

Ride Sharing: Uber will offer $20 off a new customer’s first trip on the day of the parade. Uber will have surge pricing in effect during ridesharing; zTrip taxi cabs will not.

Road Closures: Pittsburgh police will announce Downtown road closures soon. The list will be posted here.

Safety Tips for the St. Patrick’s Day Parade and Festivities

The Office of Nighttime Economy has shared the following safety-related information that may be useful to business owners and their customers.

Watch out for Vulnerable People: Emergency Medical Services urges you to keep watch over intoxicated persons to ensure they don’t leave with strangers or under other suspicious conditions. Monitor restrooms frequently for those who may have passed out or overdose victims.

What to do in Emergency: After calling 911, designate a staff person to meet emergency personnel at the door, and then lead them to the emergency.

Social Media: Use #PghStPatricksDay for social media and safety updates as well as for sharing your own celebration photos and information.

See Something, Say Something: Businesses, employees and customers are encouraged to report anything that doesn’t look or feel right. Do not be afraid to call 911. We want you to.

Prevent Escalation: If you see a problem bubbling up, don’t second guess, call 911 immediately. It is easier to contain an incident before it escalates.

RPP and Parking Meters will be enforced on Saturday in all areas as normal.

Sign Permits: Permits, Licensing and Inspections reminds businesses to renew sign permits

Attention Second Avenue Bike Riders – Input Needed by March 13:  Hate scary connections and blind turns? Speak now.

Second Avenue, between 10th Street in Uptown to the intersection with SR 837/885 in Hays, is undergoing a Multimodal Corridor Study. This study’s intent is to look at this area and come up with a shared vision plan between the neighborhood and project leaders that focuses on multimodal access, mobility and livability through analyzing current and future transportation and land use conditions.

The top 4 goals of the project are to: (1) decrease single-occupancy vehicle trips, (2) provide mobility services and facilities, (3) encourage biking with a complete trail network and (4) increase the use of transit and other modes of transit progressions in the corridor.

The project is in collaboration between the Southwestern Pennsylvania Commission, PennDOT, the City of Pittsburgh, Allegheny County, and the Port Authority of Allegheny County. You can learn more here. Click here to send feedback. Deadline is March 13.

March Small Business Resource Fair: Join exhibitors from non-profit groups and others all over Pittsburgh who can help you start or grow your small business! Hosted by the Urban Redevelopment Authority, the event will take place on Thursday, March 21 at the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh in Squirrel Hill (5801 Forbes Avenue) from 4:30-6:30 p.m. Learn about available assistance with your building, your business plan, financing, mentorship, and other great opportunities for new and established small businesses. Registration is now open online.

If you have any questions, contact Josette Fitzgibbons at

Take a Child to Work Day – Special Performance: If you are participating in Take a Child to Work Day, the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust invites you and your little ones to the Trust Arts Education Center for a free special performance of Jazz Time!, an engaging musical journey that introduces children to the elements of jazz.

Trust Arts Education regularly presents this performance as part of a series for local early childhood classrooms. While this performance was created for children ages 3 – 5, all ages are welcome to attend this special performance for Take a Child to Work Day.

While this is a free event, it is required that people register in advance.

Keep Your Sidewalks Clear this Winter – Removal of Snow and Ice: Please remember to keep your sidewalks clear of snow and ice this winter season per City Code. Consider using Magnesium Chloride or Calcium Magnesium Acetate to deice the sidewalks in front of your business/ property.  Standard rock salt is destructive to trees and to the materials used for sidewalks and building foundations.  While cheaper, it takes more rock salt to effectively deice the same area as Magnesium Chloride or Calcium Magnesium Acetate, and rock salt is only effective in temperatures 20 degrees and warmer.

For a summary on deicing agents, and sidewalk and tree care, please visit this site.

Downtown Shopping Guides: Check out our newly updated Shopping Guide for Downtown retail here. If your business would like copies of this guide, please contact Caitlin Fadgen at or 412-325-0157 to arrange a pickup.

City of Pittsburgh Department of Permits, Licenses, and Inspections: Online licensing is here! PLI customers are now able to apply for, amend, and renew business, trade, and contractor licenses online at the City’s new OneStopPGH portal. The site is in beta testing and will be continually improved to enhance the customer experience. Residents can now look up existing license holders via name, address, or license number in our continual commitment on the online database. More information and be found on the info page. You can also find video tutorials which will guide you on how to use the new system.

Events & Free Webinars

Pittsburgh’s Million Dollar Women-Owned Businesses: Chatham University – March 8
LinkedIn for Sales, Marketing and Competitive Intelligence: PTC Nova Place– March 8
CIO Insights, Ram Rayapureddy, Global CIO, Mylan: PTC Nova Place– March 12
PBT Women of Influence 2019: Westin Convention Center Hotel – March 20
Business Essentials: Duquesne University – March 20
Aspire Dealmakers Conference: Wyndham Grand Pittsburgh Downtown – March 21
Cafe Innovation: Innovation Works Nova Place – March 21
BOMA PA Real Estate Continuing Education: SPC @Two Chatham Center – March 21
2019 CIO of the Year Awards: The Westin Convention Center Hotel – March 21
Huntington Breakfast Briefing, Uber ATG: Location TBD – March 27
Sustainability in Scandinavia, Meet the Danish and Swedish Consulates: PTC Nova Place– March 27
PBT Creating a Diverse and Inclusive Workplace: Fairmont Pittsburgh – March 28
Boost Your Website’s Visibility SEO 101: Duquesne University – March 28
How to earn $50,000 + per month Blogging: PTC Nova Place– April 4
QuickBooks Online: Duquesne University – April 17
Fox Rothschild Presents 2019 Outstanding CEOs and Top Executives: Westin Convention Center Hotel – April 17

Free Webinars:
Create a Powerful and Practical PR Strategy for Your Small Business – March 14
Ask the CPA 2019 – Tax Advice for Small Businesses – March 19
Pictures Speak Louder Than Words: Visual Content Strategies for Small Businesses – March 21
How to Grow Your Business Using Competitive Intelligence – March 28
Scale Your Business Through Outsourcing – April 4
Savvy Branding Strategies to Build Your Customer Base – April 16
Create a Plan for Your Business with a Powerful “GPS” – April 18

Vendor Opportunities

The Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership provides many opportunities for local vendors, artisans, farmers, and community groups to get involved in and showcase their offerings to our diverse Downtown community.

Market Square Farmers Market
Apply to be a vendor by clicking here.
Application deadline is March 15, 2019 for full-time food and alcohol vendors. Part-time and Alcohol vendors will continue to be accepted on a rolling basis. Learn more about the Market Square Farmers Market.

Shop Downtown Spotlight Program 
Downtown businesses have the opportunity to participate in the Market Square Farmers Market through the PDP’s Shop Downtown Spotlight Program as a single day vendor. Learn more about the program and apply for a spot here.

Night Markets
Apply to be a vendor by clicking here.
Applications received prior to March 20 will be reviewed for a first-wave acceptance. First-wave vendors will be informed by March 29 of their status. Applicants will be accepted on a rolling basis after March 20 depending on availability. Learn more about Night Markets.

Business Opportunities

Affordable Small Business Marketing Opportunity: Minuteman Press, located at 905 Liberty Avenue, is featuring a new mail marketing campaign developed to help local Downtown businesses increase sales and foot traffic. The mailing will be delivered the week of April 15 and will be printed on 9” x 12” high gloss cover stock. You can find more information here.

  • Ads start at $350 and Include design services, printing, and mailing
  • Exposure to over 10,000 addresses strategically defined  with an Income range $90 – 130k, and Median age range of 25 – 60
  • Promote new products and services
  • Direct customers to your website or Facebook page
  • Offer a special price or discount that can’t be passed up and will increase foot traffic
  • Publicize a special event or sale

To reserve your spot in this unique and affordable marketing opportunity and reach thousands of new customers please book your ad by March 18. Email or call 412-456-8222 to reserve your space.

Good Food 100: The Good Food 100 Restaurants™ application is how chefs, restaurants, and food service businesses apply to be part of the 2019 Good Food 100 Restaurants™. The annual list and corresponding economic report are designed to educate eaters and celebrate restaurants who are using their purchasing power to honor and support every link in the food chain and change the food system for good.

This year, marrying shared missions, the Good Food 100 Restaurants™ and the James Beard Foundation have forged a partnership to accelerate transparency in the culinary community and promote the importance and impact of a sustainable food system.

Any U.S. restaurant or food service operation is eligible. There is no cost to apply and individual restaurant data is confidential. Applications are available online. The deadline to apply is May 31, 2019.

Pittsburgh Tomorrow Contest: Have a great idea to improve Pittsburgh? Here’s your chance to make it a reality!

How would you like to have a private audience with the Mayor, County Executive and a group of potential funders to explain your idea to make Pittsburgh a better place? That’s what the winners of the Pittsburgh Tomorrow contest will get: a chance to make a lasting contribution and help make Pittsburgh the greatest city in the world.

Email your idea to In under 500 words, describe your idea, why it’s needed, how it would improve Pittsburgh and any other pertinent details. If you have back-up materials, including any visuals, please attach them to the email. The deadline to apply is April 3, 2019.

You will be notified you if your idea is chosen as a finalist. Finalists may have their idea published in future issues of Pittsburgh Quarterly. The winners will be notified of their date with destiny, and the Mayor and County Executive.

Workplace Wellness Champions: The Pittsburgh Business Times presents the first annual Wellness Champions Awards, honoring individuals for their successful efforts to champion wellness in the workplace. This includes people who are implementing programs that improve employee health outcomes and participants who are inspiring successful wellness programs. For eligibility requirements and how to nominate, click here. Nominations will be accepted until midnight on April 5, 2019.

2019 Pittsburgh’s 30 under 30: The Pittsburgh Business Times presents the third annual 30 under 30 awards, in partnership with Leadership Pittsburgh Inc., honoring leaders in Pittsburgh’s business and nonprofit communities who are under 30 years old. Winners are selected for their successful efforts to grow a business or nonprofit and for their contributions to the community and civic organizations. For eligibility requirements and how to nominate, click here. Nominations will be accepted until midnight on May 17, 2019.

Paris to Pittsburgh Matching Grant Program: Paris to Pittsburgh is a matching grant program to assist property and business owners located in the Central Business District with exterior enhancements to improve the public realm. The program offers grants to encourage outdoor cafes and sidewalk activation in addition to building façade improvements. The 50 percent matching grants (up to $30,000) are available to fund eligible projects that enliven the Golden Triangle. You can learn more and apply here.

LIFTS – Pittsburgh’s New Streetface Renovation Program: Honeycomb Credit is partnering with the Pittsburgh Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) to help locally owned businesses improve their storefronts through LIFTS (Local Investment for Tomorrow’s Streetscapes) program, a first-of-its-kind public-private partnership. This partnership will make the URA’s Streetface Renovation Program financially accessible to more small businesses, while simultaneously allowing community members to invest in the revitalization of their neighborhoods. You can learn more about LIFTS here.

URA Micro-Enterprise Loan: Businesses within the City of Pittsburgh can apply for the URA Micro-Enterprise Loan, for between $5,000 and $20,000 at 2% interest. This funding can be used for financing for startups and small businesses that need capital to launch or grow a business. Visit the website for more information on how to apply.

Become a Sustainable Pittsburgh Restaurant – grants available up to $4,000!: The Sustainable Pittsburgh Restaurant program recognizes restaurants who are committed to making improvements in waste reduction, water conservation, energy efficiency, responsible sourcing, nutrition, and practices towards employees, consumers, and community residents. Join over 100 other Pittsburgh area restaurants that have earned the program’s designation and gain access to support, funding opportunities, marketing, and advertising to help drive your business.

The Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership has limited funding available for designated restaurants located in the Golden Triangle to use for sustainably-oriented physical improvements, materials, equipment, gardens, etc. Please contact Caitlin Fadgen at and Rebecca Bykoski at if you would like to learn more about how your business can earn its sustainable designation and submit an application for funding.

Upcoming Events, Conventions, & Conferences

David L. Lawrence Convention Center:
2019 Pittsburgh Home and Garden Show – March 1-10
Varsity Cheer Corp DBA Encore – March 16-17
Beyond The Stars Dance Competition – March 23-24
Pittsburgh Bridal Showcase 2019 – March 24
Champion Cheer Central  – March 30
TEKKO 2019 – April 11-14

PPG Paints Arena
Mumford & Sons – March 14
Alabama – March 15
NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships – March 21-23
KISS – March 30
2CELLOS – April 3
Cher – April 18

City of Pittsburgh’s 311 Response Center
Remember, you can contact the City of Pittsburgh’s 311 Response Centerwith any non-emergency City of Pittsburgh concerns or questions

Downtown Made Easy Guide

Downtown Shopping Guide

State of Downtown Pittsburgh Report

Downtown Map

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