Downtown Pittsburgh is known for its dramatically beautiful setting, surrounded by three rivers and steep bluffs. Downtown is the heart of the city, connected to the region by all major highways, and serves as the hub for the Allegheny County public transit bus and light rail systems.
Downtown is the central business district of the Pittsburgh region, and the headquarters of many major corporations are located here – such as PNC Bank, U.S. Steel, PPG Industries, UPMC, Bank of New York Mellon, Heinz, Federated Investors and Alcoa.
Point State Park is the largest green space in Downtown, connecting the Allegheny, Monongahela, and Ohio rivers. These scenic rivers serve as the extended playground of Downtown, where residents can kayak, boat, hike, bike, rollerblade, run, and fish with the glittering skyline behind them. Local organizations like Venture Outdoors connect residents and visitors alike with these types of outdoor recreational activities.
Gorgeous 19th century buildings mix with skyscrapers to give this cityscape a feel that is both historic and modern. Residential opportunities from luxury or loft style condominiums to high-end or market rate rental units have all been recently developed in the midst of this traditional business center.
Also the center for culture, the Cultural District of Downtown boasts venues like Heinz Hall, Byham Theater, O’Reilly Theater, the Benedum Center and the Wood Street and SPACE Galleries, and serves as the home to the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. Downtown is also easily accessible by foot from Uptown’s Mellon Arena and the North Shore’s sports stadiums Heinz Field and PNC Park, as well as the Rivers Casino, South Side’s Station Square and the Strip District – providing ample opportunities for entertainment.
Shopping is also convenient for Downtown residents with department stores Saks Fifth Avenue, Burlington Coat Factory, and Macy’s, many boutiques and specialty shops, as well as convenience stores and a European style grocery.
Downtown is also a center for education and innovation. Point Park University and the Art Institute of Pittsburgh offer students a challenging curriculum in a true city setting, as does the public magnet arts high school CAPA. Downtown is leading the green movement of the Pittsburgh region, with a large number of LEED-certified buildings in use or development, including the David L. Lawrence Convention Center – the first and largest convention center of its kind in the world.
Families in Downtown enjoy a variety of educational options. The Pittsburgh Public School District – which was recently named one of the Country’s Top Ten Large Urban Districts by GreatSchools.org – offers a mix of neighborhood schools and specialized magnet choices in or near Downtown, including:
Pittsburgh Vann PreK-8
Pittsburgh Weil PreK-8
Pittsburgh Miller PreK-8
Pittsburgh CAPA Creative and Performing Arts 6-12 Magnet
Pittsburgh Science and Technology 6-12 Magnet
Pittsburgh Milliones University Prep 6-12 Magnet
Please visit the Pittsburgh Public Schools website for more information.
If you are interested in private, parochial, or charter school options, please visit the “Education” section of our resource page for links.
The Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh is one of the oldest and most respected public library systems in the country. Established by Andrew Carnegie as a public trust in 1895, CLP has 19 locations throughout the City of Pittsburgh. Neighbors in Downtown enjoy these branches:
For more information about the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, visit their website.
Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership
Arts & Culture
Pittsburgh Cultural Trust
David L. Lawrence Convention Center
Point Park University
Art Institute of Pittsburgh
CAPA Magnet Arts High School
Parks & Recreation
Point State Park