Marathon adds challenges to commencement weekend logistics

The excitement and hubbub surrounding Pitt’s 2022 commencement weekend will likely be enhanced by the Pittsburgh Marathon, which coincides with University-driven events on April 30 and May 1.

Pitt’s Undergraduate Commencement Ceremony will take place at 2 p.m. May 1 at the Petersen Events Center just hours after the marathon begins at 7 a.m. Visitors to campus this weekend are advised to plan ahead regarding driving routes and parking arrangements. 

To help clear the marathon route, the city of Pittsburgh will strictly enforce posted road closures and towing. All University-owned garages and parking lots will be open to the public beginning at 8 a.m. Saturday and Sunday, and will be free of charge for graduates and their guests. Here is a map of available parking lots and garages. 

Shuttles to transport graduates and their guests to the Petersen Events Center will run on Sunday. Here are shuttle stops and schedules. 

Road closures 

Rolling road closures will be in effect both before and during the marathon on May 1: 

  • In Central Oakland, Forbes Avenue will be closed between Craft Avenue and Craig Street 6:15-11:45 a.m. 

  • Craig Street will be closed 6:15 a.m.-11:45 a.m. 

  • Fifth Avenue will be closed 6:30 a.m.-noon. 

Here is a sector map with approximate times of street re-openings.

Department ceremonies

Those attending the following events should allow extra time for travel. The city will update Google Maps with road closures during the marathon.

  • College of General Studies — Posvar Patio, 9-11 a.m.  
  • Africana Studies — Dining Room A, William Pitt Union, 10-11:30 a.m.  
  • Anthropology — Anthropology Department, Posvar Hall, 10 a.m.
  • Economics - Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Hall and Museum. Doors - 9:15 a.m.; ceremony, 10 a.m.
  • History — Posvar Hall Patio near the Bigelow Boulevard entrance , 9 a.m.
  • History of Art and Architecture — Frick Fine Arts Building. Recognition: 9-10 a.m; Reception: 10-11 a.m.
  • Industrial Engineering - University Club, Ballroom B, 9-11 a.m.
  • Neuroscience — Schenley Ballroom, Wyndham University Center, 9 a.m.
  • Physics and Astronomy - Kurtzman Room, William Pitt Union, 9:30 a.m. 
  • Political Science - Posvar Patio 
  • Theatre Arts - Charity Randall Theatre, 10 a.m.
  • Urban Studies - Room 1500 of Posvar Hall 

Those attending the undergraduate ceremony on May 1 should note that doors to the event will open AFTER the approximate road re-openings.

Graduates and guests are welcome to enter the Petersen Events Center beginning at 12:30 p.m.  University officials ask that all graduates be seated by 1:30 p.m.  


Roads and locations where towing will be enforced beginning at 11 p.m. April 30 through 2 p.m. May 1:   

  • Along Forbes Avenue between Craft Avenue and Craig Street

  • On Craig Street between Forbes and Fifth avenues

  • On Fifth Avenue between Craig and Aiken streets

If you are towed: The city of Pittsburgh contracts with the McGann & Chester towing company, based in Beechview. If you are towed, their impound lot is located near the southern end of the Liberty Tunnels at 700 Hargrove St. Call 412-381-9400. To retrieve your vehicle, you must have a driver's license and vehicle owner's card available. Drivers who are using a rental car must contact their rental agency. 

Alternate routes 

From Interstate 376 West: The campus will be accessible south of Forbes Avenue by way of Bates Street. 

From Downtown: The western and southern ends of campus are accessible using the Boulevard of the Allies. You will NOT be able to use the Forbes Avenue exit. The northern end of campus will be accessible via Bigelow Boulevard and Center Avenue. 

From Interstate 279 North: The southern end of campus will be accessible by taking I-79 S to I-279 S to Fort Pitt Boulevard in Pittsburgh. Take the exit toward Downtown from I-279 S.  Take Second Avenue to Bates Street. Turn left on Bouquet Street then right on Roberto Clemente Drive.

From Interstate 376 East: The southern end of campus will be accessible by taking I 376 E to Exit 73-B, PA-885N/Bates Street.Turn left on Bouquet Street then right on Roberto Clemente Drive. (Posvar Hall)

Note that marathon routes and information are subject to change. Any adjustments or new details will be shared on Pitt’s websites as they become available.