Kailey Love / 90.5 WESA

A mayoral panel appointed to oversee the restructuring of the Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority has drafted a new contract to govern PWSA. 

Keith Srakocic / AP

This winter’s saturating rains and repeated freeze-thaw cycles have led to damaged roofs, thousands of potholes and landslides across several steep city hillsides. What are Pittsburgh leaders doing to help the 20 families displaced by Mother Nature, and how can they better address infrastructure needs?

90.5 WESA's Margaret J. Krauss joins the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review's Bob Bauder to discuss.

Coming up next....

Margaret J. Krauss / 90.5 WESA

The water main on Penn Avenue in Lawrenceville broke late on a Thursday evening in January. 

Margaret Sun / 90.5 WESA

Under President Donald Trump's infrastructure plan, the federal government would supply 20 percent of funding to chosen projects across the country, with states, cities and private investors providing the remaining 80 percent.

Evan Vucci / AP

In two months, voters will choose a new congressman for Pennsylvania’s 18th District in a special election to replace Tim Murphy, who resigned after admitting to an extramarital affair. 

Liz Reid / 90.5 WESA

On Wednesday, Mayor Bill Peduto will meet with the panel he appointed to evaluate how best to restructure the Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority. After nearly six months of work, that panel issued its report at the end of December.

While the mayor said he largely supports the panel’s recommendations, he said its members left out one important consideration in selecting a best course of action for PWSA.

Gene J. Puskar / AP

It’s been a eventful news year in the Steel City, from hospital booms to repeated flush and boil orders to President Trump's impact on Pennsylvania.

Gene J. Puskar / AP Photo

The Allegheny County Lead Task Force has released a series of recommendations with the goal of minimizing childhood lead exposure. 

Google Maps

A local law firm decided to dig into PennDOT crash data to visualize the most dangerous intersections in Allegheny County. The study identifies 787 intersections that had five or more crashes from 2014 to 2016.

Dallas W. Hartman P.C. represents a lot of collision cases, and wanted to raise awareness about areas around the county where drivers are more likely to crash, said attorney Dallas Hartman.

Margaret J. Krauss / 90.5 WESA

A wood-plank bridge crosses the Stonycreek River in Johnstown, Pennsylvania, and leads to the lower boarding platform of the city’s incline. A red car on a steeply angled track whisks passengers 500 feet up a hillside. The short ride offers sweeping views of the city, and the quickest way to understand Johnstown’s sewer problem.

90.5 WESA

The group hired by the city to make recommendations on how to restructure the Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority has released its final report.

Building Infrastructure In The Age Of Climate Change

Nov 2, 2017
Charlie Neilbergall / AP

As Congress pays out more than 36 billion dollars in disaster relief, the General Accounting Office recommends that the federal government find ways to minimize the economic impacts of climate change.

Margaret Sun / 90.5 WESA

A route was selected, preliminary studies were planned and local officials intended to submit grant applications to fund the Bus Rapid Transit corridor in the fall.

Those plans may now be on hold.

President Donald Trump’s proposed budget provides no funding for new projects under the federal Capital Investment Grant which was expected to provide about $80 to $100 million for the roughly $233 million project, said Robert Rubinstein, executive director of the Urban Redevelopment Authority.

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

Across the street from the Trolley Stop Inn on Library Road in Bethel Park, there’s a sign. It’s white and rectangular, the lettering is fading a bit, and on the leftmost side is a large orange dot. It’s nearly the size of a basketball and the label boldly proclaims: Orange Belt.

On Tuesday, May 16, three candidates will be on the ballot to become the next mayor of the city of Pittsburgh. Voters will decide who will oversee city government for the next four years and who will serve as Pittsburgh's ambassador. 

Pablo Martinez Monsivais / AP

The Confluence, where the news comes together, is 90.5 WESA’s weekly news program.

Each week reporters, editors and bloggers join veteran journalist and host Kevin Gavin to take an in-depth look at the stories important to the Pittsburgh region.

This week’s topics include a look at what could happen in Pennsylvania if the Affordable Care Act is repealed. We'll discuss the contract negotiations between Mayor Bill Peduto and the Fraternal Order of Police. Also, we'll look at plans to get funding to repair Pennsylvania's bridges and roads.

Joseph Kaczmarek / AP

Heart palpitations, sweating, dizziness. For some people, crossing a bridge induces the same physiological responses as those experienced by an animal frozen in fear, said Dr. Rolf Jacob, a professor of psychiatry at Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic in Pittsburgh.

Keith Srakocic / AP File Photo

Pennsylvania needs significant infrastructure updates. President-elect Donald Trump has proposed $1 trillion worth of work to improve the country’s airports, bridges, and roads, all funded by private investors.

Gene J. Puskar / AP Photo

Moving people from one place to another means traffic: highway jams, crowded buses, and overworked subways. But one transit option remains blissfully serene: cable-propelled transit systems.

Margaret J. Krauss / 90.5 WESA

Pittsburgh is a pretty good place to talk about why reliable infrastructure matters, said Dennis Yablonsky, CEO of the Allegheny Conference on Community Development.

Virginia Alvino Young / 90.5 WESA


Municipal officials from around the country grappled with changes in transportation, such as self-driving cars and rail safety, while meeting in Pittsburgh on Wednesday.

This week, Pittsburgh is hosting 3,000 mayors and council members from around the country, as well as local leaders, for the National League of Cities' annual City Summit. They’ll meet through Saturday to discuss the challenges currently facing cities and share best practices for energy efficiency, working with startups and increasing transparency.

Matt Nemeth / 90.5 WESA

Advocates from Lawrenceville-based advocacy group Bike Pittsburgh said a fatal accident this week between a motorist and cyclist could have been prevented.

PHOTOS: At 100 Years Old, National Parks Need $12 Billion In TLC

Aug 25, 2016
William J. Smith / AP


The National Park Service is celebrating its centennial this week. On August 26, 1916, President Woodrow Wilson signed the act putting 35 parks and monuments nationwide —including Yellowstone and Yosemite — under the new federal agency.

Pennsylvania Fish & Boat Commission

Two deteriorating dams at man-made fishing lakes in southwestern Pennsylvania will be repaired beginning next year as part of a $25 million statewide investment announced by Gov. Tom Wolf on Wednesday.

The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission has dubbed 10 dams, including those at Lake Somerset and Donegal Lake, “high-hazard” and “unsafe.” The designations mean that if the dams were to fail during heavy rain, property would be damaged and people could potentially die in the ensuing flood.

Matt Rourke / AP

As Democratic Presidential Nominee Hillary Clinton heads off on her post-convention campaign trip, she’ll stop in Pittsburgh on Saturday where she is expected to talk about her jobs initiative. 

Clinton said, if elected, she will launch “the largest investment in good-paying jobs since World War II.” The plan includes a goal of bringing “affordable broadband Internet to all Americans by 2020.” 

Just seven weeks before the opening ceremony of the Olympics, the governor of Rio de Janeiro has declared a "state of calamity." Interim Governor Francisco Dornelles says the state's government is bankrupt and can't meet its financial commitments ahead of the games.

Why Is Pennsylvania’s Water Expensive?

Feb 27, 2016
nekidtroll / flickr

A recent ranking of the nation's 500 largest water systems found the highest rates charged by private companies in Pennsylvania.

Aging infrastructure and an investor-friendly regulatory climate contribute to costs, experts say.

This caught our attention because multiple commonwealth cities are considering privatizing water treatment and delivery, or have done it recently.

Why do cities consider privatizing? To finance system improvement, generate cash for a relatively unrelated obligation, or both.



Connecting Pittsburgh's Urban Landscape

Jan 5, 2016
David Brossard / flickr

More bike lanes, benches and signs guiding residents and visitors to the next Downtown location are just some of the changes that could be in store for Pittsburgh. But if space annexed by one mode of transportation will be missed by the others, what tensions could be created? PublicSource reporter Eric Holmberg has explored this question and joins us to look at how people's use of public spaces and major streets is evolving in the Steel City.                   

The Changing Face Of Pittsburgh

Jan 5, 2016

As the city continues to earn accolades as an example of urban reinvention, how will the changing face of its neighborhoods impact the city and will everyone benefit? We’ll pose those questions to Diana Nelson Jones who writes the Walkabout column for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and John Conti, freelance architectural columnist for the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.

Repairing Pennsylvania's Aging Bridges

Dec 7, 2015
Luke H. Gordon / flickr

Hundreds of bridges across the commonwealth are in desperate need of repair or replacement. Many of them are in Allegheny County. Since Pennsylvania is home to some of the oldest infrastructure in the country, a public-private partnership is working to replace a number of these bridges.