Living Watersheds

Water Policy is Land Use Policy and smart land use requires local knowledge and action. For that reason water stewards are best organized by watersheds or sewersheds.

In 2020, the Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy received a grant from a national foundation to convene community-based task forces for the six priority watersheds.  Periodically the Parks Conservancy convenes an All-Task Force meeting to share lessons-learned, watershed planning progress, and information about City-wide policy that impacts all urban watersheds in the same manners.  Notes and materials from those meetings, starting with the Winter 2021-22 meetings, are available here: 

The six priority watersheds were selected with criteria and metrics set forth in PWSA's Green First Plan.  One of the priority watersheds was Negley Run. Independently in the years before 2020, the Living Waters of Larimer project  expanded its community dialogue process by creating a Task Force that spans all communities within that watershed.  The other five priority watersheds are loosely modeled on the Negley Run Watershed Task Force process with variations to address local needs and issues. The website will be a common platform for communication and resources across those six Priority Watershed Task Forces:

Task Force Meeting agendas, minutes and relevant reports are archived at the respective Task Force links above.

Two other watersheds offer opportunities for greenspace infrastructure and stream daylighting, though they don’t yet have citizen task forces or watershed stewards:

  • Two Mile Run (A-22)
  • Spring Garden Run (A-60)

Fortunately, some of Pittsburgh’s larger streams have non-profit agencies who promote citizen stewardship and watershed collaboration. These four watershed organizations facilitate information sharing among multiple municipalities as well as advocate and implement stream improvements: