World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Steps of Pittsburgh

Typical steps in the South Side

The Steps of Pittsburgh refers to the collection of over 700 sets of city-owned steps in the City of Pittsburgh. Many steps parallel existing roads, but others exist on their own and are classified as city streets.

The large number of steps are necessitated by the topography upon which the City of Pittsburgh is built. According to author Martin Aurand, Pittsburgh “lies unevenly on unruly land.” The city is located at the confluence of two rivers which cut through elevated land of the Appalachian Plateau. The city is settled at elevations ranging from 710 to 1,300 feet (220 to 400 m) above sea level.[1]

Steps have defined Pittsburgh to many of its visitors. Writing in 1937, famed war correspondent Ernie Pyle wrote of the steps of Pittsburgh:

And then the steps. Oh Lord, the steps! I was told they actually had a Department of Steps. That isn’t exactly true, although they do have an Inspector of Steps. But there are nearly 15 miles of city-owned steps, going up mountainsides.[2]

Pittsburgh’s steps have been catalogued by author Bob Regan. He has counted over 712 individual sets of steps, including 44,645 treads, accounting for 24,108 vertical feet.[3] Currently there are over 100 major stairways (having more than 100 individual steps each) documented on this CommunityWalk page .

See also


  1. ^ Aurand, Martin (2006). The Spectator and the Topographical City. Pittsburgh: University of Pittsburgh Press. 
  2. ^ "Pyle’s Great Column on Pittsburgh". Pittsburgh Press. 1945-04-19. 
  3. ^ Regan, Bob. The Steps of Pittsburgh, Portrait of a City. Local History Co.  

External links

  • Pittsburgh Steps - Collection of photographs.
  • Post Gazette news story
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from World eBook Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.