Pittsburgh Riverfronts

Grant Street Crossing


This Riverlife-led project set out to improve the pedestrian crossing at the intersection of Grant Street and Fort Pitt Boulevard, while also creating a more visible portal to the riverfront.

The Grant Street Crossing project is the first of three phases intended to create access so people can more easily reach the Monongahela River, and serves as a welcoming gateway for Great Allegheny Passage riders reaching downtown Pittsburgh.

Vertical pylons, paint, new crossing signals and upgraded signage installed throughout November and December of 2017 create a welcoming gateway intended to delineate a clear cyclist and pedestrian route across Grant Street. The project also celebrates riverfront trail entry into Pittsburgh for the thousands of cyclists on the Great Allegheny Passage who end their journey at Point State Park.

The Grant Street Crossing improvements connect pedestrians and cyclists from the Eliza Furnace Trail, which carries the Great Allegheny Passage across Grant Street to the existing pedestrian flyway leading to the Smithfield Street Bridge. There trail users will take the Mon Wharf Switchback ramp (Phase II, under construction) to the riverfront and will continue traveling west along the water to the Point State Park Connector (Phase III, in planning) and into Point State Park. The fountain at the Point is the centerpiece of the Three Rivers Heritage Trail system, and the western terminus of the 150-mile Great Allegheny Passage, which links Pittsburgh to Cumberland, MD.

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Key Stakeholders

Riverlife engaged landscape architects LaQuatra Bonci and key stakeholders, including the City’s Department of Public Works (DPW) and City Planning, the PA Department of Transportation (PennDOT), PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR), Office of Public Art, Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership, Bike Pittsburgh, Friends of the Riverfront, Allegheny Trail Alliance, Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh, and others, to come up with design solutions that will work in the context of DPW and PennDOT directives.


Planning for the Grant Street Crossing improvements began in 2014 with a series of stakeholder work sessions and meetings with DPW, the Office of Public Art, and PennDOT to define design requirements and the logistics of implementation.  Supported by a planning grant from the Benter Foundation, additional stakeholder charrettes were held in October, 2014; January and March, 2015; and August 2016. With additional funding from the Grable Foundation, a presentation of the design concepts was made to the Pittsburgh Play Collaborative on February 26, 2016 and to the Children’s Museum on March 15, 2016 with a follow up report that recommended guidelines for how to make the project attractive, educational, and safe for younger pedestrians and cyclists. Final funding is provided by the Hillman Foundation.

Construction was completed throughout November and December of 2017.