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Riazzi Substation Rendering


The Port Authority of Allegheny County is working to create a Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system that would streamline commutes for buses from Downtown Pittsburgh to the city's eastern neighborhoods. In preparation for this, Duquesne Light Company (DLC) will be upgrading its infrastructure in areas on and around the route of the bus system. This work is part of DLC's commitment to providing safe, reliable service to our customers in the Downtown, Uptown and Hill District neighborhoods.

Duquesne Light will be working in conjunction with other local utilities, which also will be upgrading their respective infrastructure for the BRT system. DLC's upgrades are part of a major investment to the reliability in the area aimed at fortifying electric capacity as the community's needs grow.

DLC will be replacing 2.5 miles of electric duct bank, 86,000 feet of outdated underground cables, more than 50 poles and at least 30 electrical circuits. While most of this work will not impact customers' power, outages may be required.  


Duquesne Light's portion of this project is slated to begin mid-June 2021 and is expected to be completed in the summer of 2023. Fifth and Forbes avenues between Grant Street and the Birmingham Bridge will be affected by construction work during this time. We’re working to ensure this impact is as minimal as possible. The latest construction and traffic updates are below.


An updated construction work schedule can be accessed here

During DLC's upgrades for the BRT system, traffic flow will be restricted to a single lane through most active work sites. Work hours will be established to minimize impact to rush hour traffic, PPG Paints Arena events and other city events. Nighttime work will be conducted on Forbes Avenue near I-579 and at the Grant Street, Ross Street and Sixth Avenue intersections with Fifth Avenue.

While traffic can still navigate on Fifth and Forbes avenues, delays are expected. Those traveling through the area are encouraged to avoid construction areas by using I-376 and Centre Avenue as shown below.

For your safety, please be advised that this is an active construction site and as such, there are workers, trucks and other equipment accessing the property and surrounding area. Please exercise caution as you travel through the area.

Please check back for the latest construction and traffic updates.

BRT map


Project Overview

Duquesne Light is expanding underground ducts along Forbes, Fifth, and Centre avenues and other locations in Downtown Pittsburgh to improve service to its customers and provide additional capacity for development in the area.

This project is a major investment in the reliability of power in the Uptown and Downtown neighborhoods (including the Hill District), allowing for greater electric capacity as the needs of the community grow and develop. The capacity increase created by this project will be useful as improvements like solar panels and electric vehicles become more common.

a) Duquesne Light provides power to much of the Uptown and Downtown areas through underground cables, which run through pipes connecting manholes.

b) Many of the pipes, manholes and cables throughout this area are several decades old. The equipment sustains wear and tear over the years, and much of it is undersized for today's power needs.

c) This project will replace and rebuild existing manholes, and place new pipe and cable through this vital corridor as a once-in-a-generation investment in these communities.

Construction on Fifth and Forbes avenues between the Birmingham Bridge and Grant Street will start in June 2021 and be completed in the summer of 2023.

Electrical Outage Concerns

a) Duquesne Light is upgrading over 30 electrical circuits as part of this work. While most will not require customer outages, there may be outages required to cut over to the new circuits. These outages will typically be less than 12 hours long, and customers will be notified beforehand through door hangers, phone calls, or other means to help coordinate the outage with any special needs that customers have.

b) Outages may be during the day or night, depending upon traffic restrictions coordinated with the City of Pittsburgh Department of Mobility and Infrastructure (DOMI).

Traffic and Transit Concerns

Fifth and Forbes avenues between Grant Street and the Birmingham Bridge will be affected by construction work through summer of 2023.

During work hours, traffic flow will be restricted to a single lane through most active work sites. Work hours are established to minimize impacts to rush hour traffic, PPG Paints Arena events, and other city events. Work will be done at night on Forbes Avenue near I-579 and at the Grant Street, Ross Street and Sixth Avenue intersections with Fifth Avenue.

Fifth Avenue will be closed to east-west vehicle traffic between Sixth and Grant streets during summer 2021. In addition, north-south traffic through the intersections along Fifth and Forbes avenues will be detoured to the next available street during work activities in those particular intersections.

We are providing alternate routes on I-376 for eastbound traffic leaving the Downtown area, and an alternate route on Kirkpatrick Street/Centre Avenue for traffic traveling westbound into the city. See the alternate routes here.

No, bus service will remain throughout the project. Some routes will require detours, and some bus stops will be temporarily relocated outside of the construction work zone; information will be available through the Port Authority of Allegheny County's website.

Construction Coordination

Duquesne Light and other utilities are upgrading infrastructure ahead of the coming Bus Rapid Transit project. The designs are coordinated among the different groups to best use the available road space and minimize disruption to the community.

a) Quarterly schedules will be posted on the website as work progresses. The latest quarterly schedule detailing which blocks work is expected on is *here*.

Note that schedules are subject to change based on delays due to weather or coordination requirements with the City of Pittsburgh, Port Authority of Allegheny County, or customers.

Please email the project at For urgent needs, call Project Manager Tim Piette at 412-529-9956.

If you have any additional questions or concerns, please reach out to Tim Piette, Project Manager, at or 412-529-9956.
The construction management plan is available upon request.