PRESS RELEASES

Peduto Administration Proposes Multimodal-Focused Changes for Restaurants and Drive-Through Uses

PITTSBURGH, PA (September 13, 2021) Mayor William Peduto’s administration is forwarding legislation to the Planning Commission to promote walkable and safe neighborhoods for all by reducing the impact of vehicle-oriented uses for restaurants, with new standards for drive-throughs and updated parking requirements.   

The proposed ordinance amends the Zoning Code to create standards that allow the City to assess and reduce negative impacts of drive-through uses in certain zoning districts, including neighborhood business districts and others. New drive-through businesses proposed in the areas identified in the ordinance will require approval from the Zoning Board of Adjustment.  

In addition to ZBA approval, the legislation would also require any individual or company proposing a drive-through business to submit a Transportation Impact Study to the City’s Department of Mobility and Infrastructure (DOMI). In an effort to improve safety for pedestrians, cyclists, individuals using wheelchairs, and motorists, DOMI staff will review each study and require the applicant to make necessary changes to mitigate any detrimental impacts of vehicle-oriented businesses on the surrounding community.   

The legislation also reduces minimum parking requirements and implements maximum parking requirements for restaurants and fast food restaurants as follows: 

  • For fast food restaurants, the legislation would require 1 off-street parking space for every 500 square feet of space. Currently, the Zoning Code requires 1 off-street parking space for every 75 square feet of space. The proposed bill would implement a maximum parking requirement of 1 off-street space for every 175 square feet of space. There is currently no maximum parking requirement for this use.   
  • For all other restaurants, the legislation would require 1 off-street parking space for every 500 square feet. Currently, the Zoning Code requires 1 off-street parking space for every 125 square feet of space. The proposed bill would increase the maximum parking requirement from 1 off-street parking space for every 75 square feet to 1 off-street parking space for every 175 square feet of space.   

In addition to improving safety for users of surrounding streets, reducing minimum parking requirements and implementing maximum parking requirements simplifies the zoning process for restaurant owners and decreases costs associated with opening a business.   

“In Pittsburgh, over 20% of our residents do not own a vehicle, and a growing number of our neighbors choose to commute via a method other than driving alone,” said Mayor Peduto. “This commonsense and much-needed legislation modernizes our Zoning Code, updates antiquated parking requirements, and advances my administration’s efforts to build safer streets for all users. I applaud the Department of City Planning for their work on this bill.”  

The legislation will be presented to the City Planning Commission on Tuesday, September 14. The Commission will then take action on the proposal during their meeting on Tuesday, September 28 before forwarding their recommendation for consideration by City Council.   

Published

09.13.2021

Contacts

Molly Onufer
Communications Director
Mayor's Office
412-579-8534
molly.onufer@pittsburghpa.gov