Matching Uses to Potential Stairway Revenue Sources in Pittsburgh
As it engages with the community to prioritize city-owned stairs for rehabilitation, the city of Pittsburgh will also be better able to match each stair project to potential funding sources.
By narrowing the focus to a smaller group of prioritized projects, and gathering more data about each stair and its context, the City will likely be able to tap into sources of funding that are targeted to different uses and benefits. For example, the Federal Highway Administration provides dedicated funding for “Safe Routes to School.” Stairs that provide routes for students to reach local schools may qualify under that program.
Similarly, stairs that help residents access health care facilities may qualify for public health funding, or for in-kind or cash contributions from the hospitals that can be reached from the stairs. Foundations may be willing to support stairs that advance social goals that are high priority for them, such as providing job access to low-income residents, or improving walkability in low-income neighborhoods.
Businesses and universities may also be willing to provide additional support if the city can document how stairs help residents to access their facilities. For nonprofit organizations such as universities and hospitals, contributions might be made through negotiated agreements for payments in lieu of taxes (discussed further in this section on page 86).
Many of Pittsburgh’s more than 800 stairways are in beautiful, park-like settings, but in need of repair and ongoing maintenance.