Institute of Politics
Col. Bernard Lindstrom Rep. Paul Costa



JUST RELEASED! Green Infrastructure Status Report

View the report here

While Southwestern Pennsylvania has long been recognized as a leader in green building and green manufacturing, the issue of green infrastructure has become increasingly relevant in the past several years as the region’s largest sewer treatment plant, ALCOSAN, has been mandated to revisit its wet weather plan in order to comply with the EPA’s consent decree. In order to comply with the federal Clean Water Act and Combined Sewer Overflow Control Policy, ALCOSAN must design and implement a system that will have no Sanitary Sewer Overflow and a highly controlled amount of Combined Sewer Overflow.

This effort requires comprehensive regional planning, as well as a forward-thinking approach to make the system sustainable, safer for the environment, and more efficient.
In addition to the ALCOSAN project, there is a great deal of momentum in the region behind the incorporation of green infrastructure into sustainable designs. Because of these factors, it was suggested that the Infrastructure Committee work on producing a publication on the status of the current and future impacts of green infrastructure on our region.  Some of the questions the committee considered in this publication include:

  • In what ways is green infrastructure used in the region?
  • What are the expected impacts of investment in green infrastructure?
  • How have we progressed over the past five years?
  • How does our region value the protection, enhancement, and/or creation of green spaces and setbacks from streams?
  • What do innovators in green infrastructure see in our future?
  • In what way will the region benefit most from the use of green infrastructure?
  • How are different levels of government, as well as the private sector, making use of green infrastructure?
  • How can we best incorporate green infrastructure for new maintenance, rehabilitation, and reconstruction of large, aging Civil Works projects and facilities, such as dams, locks, and levees?
  • How do we build cost sharing partnerships between multiple agencies (Public and Private) with shared interests to achieve green infrastructure in insuring success of comprehensive regional planning efforts?

Infrastructure Status and Needs in Southwestern Pennsylvania

Click here to view the newest update of the primer - Fall 2014

In January of 2009, the Institute of Politics Infrastructure Policy Committee released an infrastructure primer with the goal of providing occasional updates as new information about sectors becomes available. Since that time, the Committee has continually published regular updates to the Primer with input from the Infrastructure Working Group.

Previous versions of the primer include:

Infrastructure primer 2012

Infrastructure primer 2011

Infrastructure primer 2010

Infrastructure primer 2009



The committee is cohosting a forum entitled "Pittsburgh on the Move" on Wednesday, May 13, 2015 from 3 - 4:30 pm. Please visit the program page for more information and to register.

Pittsburgh on the Move


The Infrastructure Policy Committee is currently cochaired by Col. Bernard Lidstrom and Rep. Paul Costa.

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