Don’t Torch Your Couch, City Asks Ahead Of Penguins Game

Jun 9, 2016

Pittsburgh Public Works officials say they'll be confiscating couches from people's porches and yards so that they can't be set on fire during any Stanley Cup celebrations.
Credit Brandon Glesbrecht / Flickr

The Pittsburgh Penguins are one game from clinching the Stanley Cup. And though city officials haven’t planned a victory parade, they are preparing for a potential win.

“Public works has been out there (Wednesday and Thursday) removing sofas and upholstery furniture, such as sofas and chairs, mainly in the open area,” said Chief Operations Officer Guy Costa.

A Pittsburgh city ordinance allows public works officials to remove some kinds of furniture from people’s porches and yards, so that they aren’t used in certain types of celebration.

“We’ve had experience with folks lighting them on fire and bringing them into the streets,” Costa said. “So we’re being more proactive.”

Costa said the ordinance allows employees to go onto private property to confiscate the couches. But if residents find their yard furniture missing, have no fear Costa said, they’ll all be stored and available to owners at the end of the hockey season.

“You can claim it. If you don’t claim it, we will pitch it,” Costa said.

City officials have also reached out to business owners, especially on the South Side, to be aware of potential dumpster fires and to make sure dumpsters are empty.

In preparation for the game, officials said to be ready for some street closures near Consol Energy Center and reduced parking on the South Side.

Parking along East Carson Street between 12th and 19th streets is prohibited Thursday night. Costa said people going out to watch the game are encouraged to park at the Second Avenue garage across the river. The Pittsburgh Parking Authority is also offering free parking in that garage after 6 p.m.

In Uptown, Costa said officials will start to close off Washington Place around 6 p.m. and no parking will be allowed on Fifth Avenue between Crawford Street and Sixth Avenue in preparation of crowds around the stadium.

The Pittsburgh Penguins take on the San Jose Sharks for Game 5 at Consol Energy Center. The game is expected to start at 8 p.m. and Costa requested that fans be respectful. 

“We ask you to respect the city of Pittsburgh,” he said. “We ask that you treat Pittsburgh and the streets of Pittsburgh like you would your own properties.”

WESA Fellow Steve Jordan contributed to this report.