Join us for two upcoming meetings regarding proposed zoning changes in Uptown/West Oakland.

Learn more about the Zoning Code proposals

Maps depicting the current and proposed zoning are provided below and the proposed zoning text can be found online: The proposal will be the subject of a community meeting on August 29, 2017 where staff will explain the proposal, answer questions, and take comments. All community members and property owners are invited to attend. The public meeting will be:


                Tuesday, August 29, 2017

                6:30-8:00 PM

                NeighborWorks Meeting Room

                710 Fifth Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15219


The proposal will be the subject of a public hearing before the Pittsburgh City Planning Commission on September 12, 2017 starting at 2:00 PM. Based on the proposal and citizen input, Planning Commission will take action on the proposed zoning changes and make a recommendation to City Council. The Planning Commission requests citizen testimony, either in the form of oral testimony at the hearing or in writing using the enclosed response form. The public hearing will be:


                Tuesday, September 12, 2017

                Starting at 2:00 PM

                Civic Building, First Floor Hearing Room

                200 Ross Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15219


If you have any questions about the zoning or how to participate in the process, please call the project manager, Derek Dauphin, at (412) 255-4897 or email

General Guidelines for Testifying at City Planning Commission 

Testimony presented by individuals will be limited to three minutes per person.  Testimony presented by a spokesperson representing an organization or a group of people will be limited to five minutes per person.  Those intending to testify on behalf of an organization/group shall provide a “letter of authorization” from the appropriate duly appointed officers before testifying.  Prepared comments or reports in printed form may be presented to the commission to support testimony or in lieu of testimony.  Testimony should not be read from a prepared statement, but may be generalized or summarized as testimony with the prepared statement handed to the commission for their review.  

Existing and Proposed Zoning Maps


Why do we need zoning amendments?

The purpose of the new zoning is to address issues identified by the community and through staff analyses during the Uptown / West Oakland EcoInnovation District Plan process:




The proposed Uptown Public Realm District (UPR) aims to address these issues, to reduce unnecessary barriers to new residential and commercial development, to incorporate the goals of the EcoInnovation District Plan, and to establish conditions conducive to growing the business incubator and innovation functions of the district.

The UPR will replace the existing zoning in Uptown with two subdistricts, each with their own Development Standards, Parking Standards and Uses. The new zoning also establishes a height bonus system to encourage developers to respond to community needs in their projects.


What are the Uptown Public Realm subdistricts?

The new code condenses and simplifies the existing eight zoning districts in the area into two subdistricts: the Mixed-Use Core and the Residential Core. The boundaries drawn for these subdistricts are based on detailed conversations with the community about desired uses and density.




No changes are proposed to the Educational / Medical / Institutional (EMI) district that covers Duquesne University and UPMC Mercy Hospital, and most of the areas currently zoned Hillside (H) District. The existing zoning and proposed new subdistricts are identified on the maps on the following page. The proposed zoning text for both subdistricts can be found at:  


What is the Performance Points System?

In addition to the new zoning classifications, the City is proposing a new bonus system that would be available to development in the Uptown Public Realm District. These amendments to Chapter 915 would establish a menu of height bonuses that new buildings or renovations can use if they satisfy community goals identified during this planning process, including:

Bonus points are awarded when a project meets a goal, with more points awarded for projects that have bigger impacts in the district. The bonus system is highly flexible and can be utilized by a wide variety of development projects. The more the system is used, the more the community will see new development that embodies its goals as identified in the Uptown / West Oakland EcoInnovation District Plan. Community members will still have their opportunity to comment on projects when they are reviewed by the Planning Commission.


Frequently Asked Questions

Why did I receive multiple notices in the mail for this project?

There are a number of reasons you may have received multiple notices related to this project. Property owners were noticed if they own property within the area to be rezoned to the Uptown Public Realm District (UPR) and/or if they own property outside this area if the property is within 150 feet of the new UPR. There is a gray box at the top of the front page of the notice that states whether your property is in our outside the rezoned area. If you own properties in and adjacent to this area, you should receive two notices. Additionally, the City uses addresses from the Allegheny County Office of Property Assessment which includes duplicates that could result in the same address receiving multiple notices. Aside from the text in the gray box on the first page of the notice, the content is identical across notices.

Access to the current Zoning Code 

View a copy of the zoning ordinance on the City of Pittsburgh official website:

A copy of the zoning ordinance is also available for inspection at the Department of City Planning, Land Use Control Division, 200 Ross Street, 3rd Floor.

If the zoning change will result in a more restrictive zoning designation for my property, can I maintain the existing use of my property?

Yes. If you currently have a Certificate of Occupancy on file for the current use of your property, you do not need to do anything as a result of the zoning change.  For example, a two dwelling-unit building presently located in a zone that allows a two-unit occupancy, but is being rezoned to a single-unit classification would not need a new certificate.  That two-unit building becomes non-conforming and can remain two units.  

How do I know if I have a Certificate of Occupancy? 

If you own a single-family home, the zoning change will not affect your property because you home is permitted in all residential zoning districts. A Certification of Occupancy is not required for single-family homes. Call the Bureau of Building Inspection File Room at 412-255-2195.   

What if I do not have a Certificate of Occupancy? 

You must file for a Certificate of Occupancy at the Department of City Planning, Land Use Control Division (200 Ross Street, 3rd Floor or call 412-255-2231).  This will then allow the continuation of your use of the property, which will be known as a “legal non-conforming use” if the zoning changes.  

Do I need a Certificate of Occupancy? 

All uses other than single-family residential must have a Certificate of Occupancy.