Frequently Asked Questions

Please note that PGHLab is not a fast-track to procurement nor a venue to sell the City of Pittsburgh products or services, initiate a procurement agreement, become an approved vendor, or respond to an RFP. The City will not compensate the startup at a market rate for the use of its product or service, all products will be returned to the startup upon completion of the pilot. Startups interested in selling their product or service to the City should refer to Beacon, the e-procurement platform to learn about bid opportunities. Further, please understand that initial award and selection to the PGHLab cohort does not guarantee participation in the program itself. Program participation by any awardee is subject to awardee’s agreement with the City and applicable local authorities, to terms and conditions including but not limited to the terms described in the PGH Lab rules and regulations as amended.

At this time, Pittsburgh and Allegheny County startups are preferred but we are open to a broader range of startups in neighboring counties. Please direct inquiries to if interested.

This is not a venue to sell the City of Pittsburgh products or services, initiate a procurement agreement, become an approved vendor, or respond to an RFP. Please refer to Beacon and City Procurement Procedures for these actions.

The City works hard to connect startups to a network of resources here in Pittsburgh to support their growth and their ability to sustain a pilot. The City cannot compensate the startup for use of its product or service.

PGH Lab defines “startup” according to the phase a pilot product is in rather than the age or size of the company. If you have products or services with revenue streams but have a pilot-ready product that is pre-customer, you should still apply. The pilot would only test that beta phase product.

Any equipment used will not be retained or considered property of the City of Pittsburgh or participating authorities. All products tested as part of PGH Lab will be returned at the end of the pilot.

Participants in the PGH Lab program will receive public attention from local news outlets. However, the PGH Lab program is not the portal for requesting a formal letter of support from the Mayor.

Companies with paid pilots or paying customers are eligible to apply.

The city will provide a dedicated program liaison, access to any equipment, infrastructure, or staff required to successfully execute the pilot.

Yes, if you have an innovative service that presents great potential to improve city operations and help the City of Pittsburgh deliver quality services, tell us how your service works. Refer to FlyWheel and Global Wordsmiths pilot projects for inspiration.

Startups have an opportunity to test their product. This test case is valuable in seeking investors and customers. Startups will also be connected to a range of city resources. Startups are encouraged to test, gain valuable market feedback, and iterate.

The goal for both startups and the City is to have successfully completed pilots with measurable outcomes. To that end, a startup must have time, staff, equipment, and other required resources to sustain and complete a pilot for up to 6 months. In addition, the startup is required to allocate time for bi-weekly check-in meetings with program manager, meetings with city champions, and a company presentation day. Please check the PGH Lab Rules & Regulations Booklet for detailed information on company expectations.