The Very Local Guide to Open Streets PGH – July 28th Route

Here’s a collection of sights and recommended stops along the Open Streets route [Downtown – Uptown – Southside] on Sunday.

by Emma Diehl | July 24, 2019

Ready to hit the road? It’s time for the July edition of Open Streets PGH!

This month, ride through Downtown, Uptown and the South Side, including the 10th St. Bridge, Birmingham Bridge and the Armstrong Tunnel on Sunday, July 28. Hosted by BikePGH, Open Streets PGH is a community event that shuts down streets in select areas from vehicle traffic so residents can get out, exercise and explore the areas by foot or bicycle.

This is the event’s most ambitious year to date, with three Open Streets dates this summer across the city featuring different neighborhoods each month.

This summer, we’ve seen routes in the East End and Lawrenceville to Downtown. Sunday’s event will be the last Open Streets PGH of the season.

What is Open Streets PGH?

Open Streets is a free community event that temporarily closes the streets to car traffic and allows residents to bike, walk, run, skate or stroll through the neighborhood along the route. The open streets movement has been taking hold in other cities around the globe. The Paris Respire, which translates to Paris Breathes, closes certain roads to traffic on Sundays from 9am to 5pm. Cyclovia Tuscon takes place twice a year and has quite a following. The first Open Streets Pittsburgh was held in 2014.

Open Streets – Route Guide for Downtown, Uptown, and the South Side

Dust off your bike, blades or running shoes and take to the streets from 9am to 1pm on Sunday. There’s a ton going on during the event, but here are a few Very Local recommended stops and detours.

South Side Kids Hub – E Carson St. & 20th St.

This BikePGH-sponsored hub will host family-friendly events for the duration of Open Streets, including a “Learn to Ride a Bike” station, family yoga from the YMCA, obstacle courses and more. Dance along to a Music and Movement class, or get moving in the BikePGH obstacle course. Bring a pair of roller skates or blades and join in Steel City Roller Derby’s event-long roller skating party at the hub.

Highway Robbery Vintage – 2012 E Carson St.

On the hunt for some flashy duds before you take to Open Streets? South Side staple and Very Local favorite Highway Robbery Vintage has a wide array of men’s and women’s vintage spanning decades and styles. Its new location has space for even more looks.

Get (Out)Fit – 22nd St. at E Carson St.

This year’s Open Streets PGH season is coming to a close, but if you want to get involved in next year’s planning, check out BikePGH’s information station to learn more and pick up some bike-centric merch. While you’re there, try a class with YMCA Pittsburgh, where they’ll be offering free classes all day.

Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, South Side – 2205 E Carson St.

The Carnegie Library’s Southside branch has a rich history, which is apparent from its original 1908 furniture still used in the space. Once used as an air raid shelter during WWII, this location houses one of the CLP’s “Labs” – teen spaces for multimedia creation.

Ormsby Pool – 79. S 22nd St.

Although it’s just off the Birmingham Bridge, this small, local pool has a secluded feel. If you want to get away and take a dip during Open Streets, it’s just $5 for a day pass.

Birmingham Bridge

Fun fact: The Birmingham Bridge was once called the Brady St. Bridge, but was renamed in honor of the English city, and also the neighborhood it connected to, as this part of the South Side was once called Birmingham. That’s classic Pittsburgh–calling something based on what used to be there.

Uptown Hub – Forbes Ave at Gist St.

If you haven’t had enough activity already, check out one of the free YMCA-hosted classes taking place during Open Streets, including Line Dancing, HIIT, Boot Camp and Zumba.

Uptown Public Art – Gist St.

Take a short detour from the Open Streets route and check out the many public murals attached to homes and businesses on Gist Street.

Local Uptown artists James Simon and John Fleenor are featured among other nationally and internationally renowned artists.

Welcome to Uptown

It’s worth taking another detour to check out James Simon’s detailed “Welcome to Uptown” sign. Chances are you’ve seen it from the car, but on foot, the elaborate multi-form mosaic takes on new detail.

Plant-Based Sweet Treats – Moultrie at Forbes Ave.

Ice cream pop-up Rooted explains its small batch ice cream isn’t just good vegan ice cream, but good ice cream, full stop. With a pop-up at Butterwood Bake Consortium and sales at farmer’s markets across the city, come see what the (sugar) buzz is all about.

Learn to Fix Your Bike – Van Braam at Forbes

Here’s the thing: Mercury is in retrograde until the end of the month. While we hope you don’t run into any mechanical issues on your ride, Free Ride is offering repair lessons along the route. Fix your tube, grease your gears and hit the road.

City County Building – 414 Grant St.

Fresh off its 100-year anniversary (built in 1917) is the City-County Building; it houses the Mayor’s office and the county’s court system. Duck into the Grand Lobby to check out the detailed artwork on the bronze classical columns, as well as the ornately designed elevator doors.

People’s Hub in Market Square – Market Square

If you haven’t had your fill of cardio, check out the free classes in Market Square including Hip Hop, Insanity, Crossfit and Yoga in the Square.

10th Street Bridge

As you move across the 10th St. Bridge, look up and see if you can spot the iconic geese, which are often mistaken for dinosaurs. Painted over 20 years ago, the geese fell into peril late last year after the bridge was repainted. The artist Tim Kaulen launched a petition to save said geese, and as you can see, the geese have reappeared in all their glory.

Ready to roll, run or cycle? We’ll see you Sunday.


Getting there
Uptown, Pittsburgh, PA, USA
Emma Diehl

Emma Diehl

Emma is a Pittsburgh-based writer, with a focus on lifestyle and technology. Her work has been featured on HuffpostLive!, NPR, XOJane, NEXTPittsburgh, and Niche.

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