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City Preparing For St. Patrick's Day Celebration, Announces Transportation Changes

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) -- Thousands will be out and about in their green this weekend for the city's annual St. Patrick's Day Parade and celebrations.

City officials are trying to make things a little easier for the many revelers this year, and announced some changes today ahead of the festivities.

One of the biggest changes is how people will be getting from Downtown to the South Side.

The Pittsburgh St. Patrick's Day Parade is the second largest in the country, just behind New York City. Each year more than 300,000 people take to the streets, and on this day, everyone has a little Irish blood running through their veins.

"We are the number one city for celebrating St. Patrick's Day," said Pittsburgh City Councilman Bruce Kraus. "People will come from far and wide to be here, and many will be associated with vehicles."

Councilman Kraus, Mayor Bill Peduto, the Pittsburgh Police Department, and the Parking Authority have put together a plan to leave the driving to them.


The parade begins at 10 a.m. Saturday near Liberty Avenue, travels down Grant Street, onto the Boulevard of the Allies and then ends at Stanwix Street.

(Photo Credit: KDKA)

Over in Market Square, the alcohol-free family event also kicks off at 10 a.m. and goes until 1 p.m. And then, from 1 p.m. to 5:30 p.m., open containers of alcohol are permitted in the square.

After that, many of the revelers are expected to head over to the South Side. So city officials are asking people to leave their vehicles where they are.

They are encouraging safe transportation to cut down on the number of DUI incidents.

"[The] Second Avenue lot is going to be free all night," said Councilman Kraus. "I know the spaces will be free that day."

Vehicles must be removed from the Second Avenue Parking Lot by noon on Sunday.

To get people from one place to another on Saturday, three 25-passenger shuttle buses will run from 7 a.m. Saturday until 4 a.m. Sunday.

City officials say the shuttles are free of charge and will travel from "Second Avenue, across the 10th Street Bridge and along E. Carson Street with stops at 12th, 15th, 17th, 19th and 21st Streets."

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Councilman Kraus says the shuttle buses will cost the city about $2,500, but that's still cheaper than towing away cars and arresting folks for DUIs.

Also, the city says none of the shuttle buses will travel through residential areas.

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