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City, Penguins, and Marathon Officials Urge Sunday Downtown Commuters To Be Prepared For Heavy Traffic

by Staff Writer / Pittsburgh Penguins
City officials, the Pittsburgh Penguins, and the Dick’s Sporting Goods Pittsburgh Marathon today sent a message to commuters who will be taking part in one or more of Sunday’s events.

“We’re asking the public at large and all of our commuters who will be coming downtown Sunday to exercise patience and help us get through these events safely.” City Public Safety Director Michael Huss Said. “City police will be doing everything in their power to get roads open as soon as possible after the Marathon in order to accommodate the expected traffic for the Penguins game. But even with that, there’s a lot going on in town and parking is going to be an issue. We need everyone to plan for heavy traffic, consider alternative transportation and think ahead.”
In addition to the recently announced 2 p.m. Penguins game, there will be a permitted march beginning at 1:45 p.m. which takes place downtown. The University of Pittsburgh’s commencement ceremony begins at 2 p.m. in Oakland.
The City’s emergency operations center will be activated Sunday and officials will be working with PennDOT’s Traffic Management Center to communicate updated traffic conditions via the Parkway’s message boards. The HOV lanes (279 and 579) are open all weekend for outbound traffic with no passenger restrictions.
The Penguins Organization urged fans to take public transportation and car pool, and to be aware that downtown’s parking garages will be operating at a much higher capacity.
“We’re very excited to be hosting Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals on Sunday,” said Tom McMillan, Vice President of Communications for the Penguins. “Obviously this is a National Hockey League playoff game on national television (NBC), so the time cannot be changed. Accordingly, we are encouraging our fans to plan ahead on where they will park, especially if they want to arrive early. We are also asking them to consider carpooling and public transportation.”
The Dick’s Sporting Goods Pittsburgh Marathon kicks-off at 7:30 a.m., Sunday, May 2. With an average race time of a little over four hours, the crowd is expected to thin by noontime. The Penguins game begins at 2 p.m., and doors open at 12:30 p.m.
“There still may be minimal road closures downtown at that time because of the race,” said Marathon Director Patrice Matamoros.  “In addition, many of our participants and their families will be parking downtown, so there really may be a bit of a crunch when it comes to participants exiting the City and Penguins fans entering.”
A list of the roads to be closed Sunday due to the Marathon as well as their approximate reopening times can be found at along with additional Marathon parking information.
“We’re all set to go and ready to have a successful race day Sunday,” said Matamoros. “It may be a little more difficult for our participants to leave downtown Sunday, but with the tremendous accomplishment on their heels, I’m sure that they will be full of positive excitement and energy.”
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