Seeking Community Groups to participate in City Steps Celebration

Duquesne University steps. Photo by: Dave Gingrich

BikePGH and the Office of Public Art seeking Community Groups to participate in City Steps Celebration

Bike Pittsburgh (BikePGH) and the Office of Public Art (OPA) are excited to announce the launch of a new initiative to celebrate city steps and neighborhood connections. Culminating in fall 2019 with a ten-day city steps celebration, the initiative will partner communities with artists to design and implement temporary activations of neighborhood city steps. We are seeking community partners who are interested in being part of this exciting opportunity.

Up to four community groups will be selected to work with an artist to design an event celebrating and drawing attention to one or more of the city steps in their neighborhood. The fall celebration will feature artist-designed events on and around city steps. OPA and BikePGH will facilitate the artist selection, and each community group will select the artist with whom they want to collaborate through an open call process.

The goal of the initiative is to create excitement, awareness, and engagement around city steps for the purposes of increased investment, preservation, and utilization. As a first step, BikePGH and OPA are issuing this Call for Community Partners (RFQ) who are interested in being considered. The four community partners will be selected by the project team and additional advisors.

Find out more information about this project including how to apply and selection criteria at The deadline for submissions is Monday, March 25, 2019 at noon. Late submissions will not be accepted.


If you have questions about this call for community partners, please contact Sallyann Kluz at OPA at 412-391-2060 x251 or via email at


Pittsburgh has approximately 800 sets of steps – more public staircases than any other city in the United States. The steps are an important and under-resourced connection between communities, which thousands of residents rely on for transportation and recreation. Nearly two-thirds of the steps are in low or moderate-income areas and many are located in the City’s hilliest neighborhoods. Many of these neighborhoods lack strong public transit resources. Maintenance of the steps has proved an enormous financial and logistical challenge — some staircases are in such disrepair and built in such intricate surroundings that repairing them equates to undertaking a small bridge repair project.

The city steps activation project will amplify the work of the City Steps Plan and draw attention to the resources that are being invested in city steps. The partnership is designed to activate the City-wide conversation about city steps, and generate new types of activities that can continue beyond the life of the project. This program is generously supported by the Hillman Foundation.

About Us

BikePGH is a bicycle and pedestrian advocacy organization. Since 2002 Bike Pittsburgh has been transforming Pittsburgh’s streets and communities into vibrant, healthy places by making them safe and accessible for everyone to bike and walk. For more information visit

Office of Public Art (OPA) is the leading agent and advocate for public art in Southwestern Pennsylvania. Founded in 2005, OPA is part of the Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council and works with communities and artists throughout the region by providing public art education, commissions, project management, artist selection, and artist residencies in the public realm.  OPA collaborates with individuals and organizations in both the public and private sector. For more information, visit:

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