City of Pittsburgh Announces Operational Changes Due to COVID-19

PITTSBURGH, PA (March 16, 2020) The City of Pittsburgh will continue to deliver essential City services to residents throughout the response to the COVID-19 pandemic, though starting today some services will be curtailed to protect employee and resident health.. 

Beginning at noon today non-emergency City offices and facilities will be closed to the public until further notice, though operations will continue through teleworking by eligible employees.  

“We will provide continuous operations throughout this crisis. City government never shuts down and public services will be offered continuously throughout this pandemic,” Mayor William Peduto said. 

The following services and offices will remain operational: 

  • All emergency services including Police, Fire, Emergency Medical Services and (for life safety matters only) Animal Care and Control. 
  • Inspections of buildings, roads, traffic lights and other infrastructure 
  • Response to weather events 
  • Refuse and recycling collection (see note below) 
  • City parks (though residents are urged to stay off playground equipment, as their cleanliness cannot be guaranteed) 
  • Pittsburgh City Council meetings (subject to health safety restrictions) 
  • City Planning, Permits, Licenses and Inspections, and the Department of Mobility and Infrastructure will continue to review plans, issue permits, and intake applications. PLI and City Planning permits are available online; the application can be found here or you can send the full application and payment via US mail. Licensing late fees will be forgiven. Utilities needing public right of way permits can continue to apply online utilizing the established Google form. All other permit requests should be submitted by email to and further instructions will be provided
  • 311: Operators will still be taking calls; however, some issues may not be addressed immediately as crews may be limited or helping to handle pandemic-related issues. 
  • Office of Municipal Investigations intake 
  • Commission on Human Relations complaint intake  
  • All Finance and Office of Management and Budget functions essential to continue core city operations and payroll. 
  • Questions about the City’s Paid Sick Leave law will still be collected and answered at the Sick Leave website 

The following facilities and operations will be closed until further notice: 

  • City Department offices in the City-County Building and the Robin Civic Building (200 Ross Street) 
  • Senior Healthy Active Living Centers (see note below) 
  • Recreation Centers (see note below) 
  • City park shelters and fields (refunds will be issued to those who made reservations by emailing
  • All water fountains and restrooms in parks will be shut-off, though portable toilets will remain in service 
  • All in-person permit counters  
  • Special Event permits issuance 
  • City participation in community meetings 
  • All programming from Parks & Recreation  
  • Mellon Park Tennis Bubble 
  • Oliver Bath House 
  • In-person tax assistance  
  • Treasurer Sales (including already scheduled April 17 sale) 

All City of Pittsburgh employees will continue to be paid, and their work schedules will be overseen by their department supervisors.  

Note on refuse: While curbside trash and recycling will still be collected, if the waste is not picked up on your normal collection day please leave it at the curb and do not call 311. It will be picked up later.  

Please help protect the front line workers who are protecting you from spreading diseases by: 

Note on Senior and Recreation centers: Grab-and-go meals may be distributed from a small network of these centers in coming days, but those services have not yet been finalized. Further announcements will be made regarding food access when plans are ready. 

Note on those experiencing homelessness: In the interest of preventing needless harm to our neighbors living outside, the city is working with our longtime homeless services partner, Pittsburgh Mercy’s Operation Safety Net (OSN), to coordinate all camp engagements. During this time of increased vulnerability for those who are homeless, camps should not be entered by anyone except those determined to be providing life-sustaining care. Please call OSN at 412-232-5739, ext. 4 or text street outreach team lead Dan Palka at 412-589-2894 with any inquiries regarding collaboration or support. We appreciate your cooperation and commitment to people’s wellbeing. 

Allegheny County released a helpful guide (see press release on County operational changes) to their services during this time, including mental health and human services. 

More announcements on City response to COVID-19 will be released as necessary. 



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Timothy McNulty
Communications Director
Mayor's Office