Welcome to FilmApp Pittsburgh!

IMPORTANT NOTICE

The City of Pittsburgh is currently accepting applications for film projects on a case by case basis. All applications will be required to submit Covid-19 Safety Plans in addition to normal application documents. Please allow ample time for application review, especially if significant City resources are required for your shoot to be successful. 

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The Office of Special Events is the official event and film production permitting & management office for the City of Pittsburgh.

 

Office of Special Events Hours:
8:00am - 4:45pm EST Monday - Friday

To support the city’s rapidly growing film industry, the Office of Special Events has streamlined the permitting process forproducers and locations staff with the launch of our new online application software: FilmApp Pittsburgh.  In addition to permitting and project management for filming activities in the City of Pittsburgh, the Office of Special Events is also responsible for the following:
 

  • Issuing permits to events and productions filming on public property in the City of Pittsburgh.
  • Facilitating communication between event organizers and producers and city departments and authorities.
  • Handling cost recovery efforts for City services related to event & film needs.
  • Handling permitting for block-parties and community festivals in addition to special events and films.
APPLICATION FEES FOR 2020: 
Film Permit Application: $225.00
Additional Shoot Review: $75.00
Still Photography Permit: $25.00
Drone Filming Application Fee: $75.00


The "Film Permit Application" fee will be charged at application submission and must be paid for the application to be reviewed. 
Please see the Getting Started document on the FilmApp Pittsburgh home page for a description of all fees, including site usage fees.

 
 

Before you get started, please download and review the Getting Started document in the right-hand column. You will find the necessary guidelines and helpful information for filming in the City of Pittsburgh. All supplementary forms you may need to continue can be found to the right as well.

We know you have a choice to film anywhere, and we thank you for choosing the City of Pittsburgh as the location for your project. Have an amazing time!

 

Application Notes:

Applications for all Film projects must be submitted to the Office of Special Events at least two (2) business days in advance of the date the filming activity is to begin for a low impact filming activity; or a minimum of three (3) business days in advance of the date filming activity is to begin for a high impact filming activity; or a minimum of seven (7) business days in advance of the date filming activity is to begin for a high impact filming activity if there are street closures, stunts, or pyrotechnics involved.

To determine if your project is a high impact or low impact project, please see the Getting Started document to the right.

The City will have final determination of whether a filming activity should be categorized as "high" or "low" impact, which may affect the submittal deadlines and some costs. No late applications will be processed by the City. Applicants are encouraged to submit applications at the earliest advance date possible in order to facilitate coordination between City departments.

 

Please be advised that any applications or documents submitted past close of business (4:45PM EST) on any given day will not be counted as RECEIVED until the next business day. Example: an application submitted on a Tuesday at 5:15PM EST will be counted as “received” on Wednesday. Applications submitted after 4:45PM EST on a Friday will be considered received the following business day.

 

In accordance with Chapter 492.04 of Pittsburgh City Code, the following activities do not require a Film Permit from the Office of Special Events, provided they will not require the closure of City property or substantially impede vehicular or pedestrian traffic flow on a public way:

  • Filming activities conducted for news purposes;
  • Filming activities conducted at studios;
  • Filming activities conducted for use in a criminal investigation or civil or criminal court proceeding;
  • Filming activities conducted on private property;
  • Commercial still photography or staging thereof, when conducted to the exclusion of any other filming activity, when the following conditions apply:
    • The still photography, or staging thereof, will not be conducted on City property; or
    • The still photography, or staging thereof, will not require the parking of more than two (2) motor vehicles on any public way.
  • Filming activities conducted by or for the City;
  • Filming activity that is conducted solely by use of hand held equipment or tripods, reflectors, and/or battery operated lights (no generators or cabling is allowed) and which does not involve:
    • The use of City services or City property that is not otherwise open freely to the public; or
    • The assertion of exclusive use or closure of a public way or the blocking of private businesses or concessions
  • Filming activity associated with:
    • Any permitted or legally unpermitted rally, protest, or demonstration, except when the same is staged for the sole purpose of being included in the final product of a filming activity; or
    • An outdoor event that is otherwise authorized by a special events permit as defined in Chapter 470 of the City Code or authorized by another City permit, except when the event is staged for the sole purpose of being included in a final product of a filming activity.
 
An exemption under these regulations for one element of a filming activity does not exclude a producer of such activity from complying with Chapter 492 for other elements of the production if applicable. Also, an exemption under this Section does not otherwise exempt a producer of a filming activity from complying with other applicable City ordinances or laws.
 

In accordance with Chapter 492.04 of Pittsburgh City Code, the following activities do require a Film Permit from the Office of Special Events:

  • Filming activity that is reasonably expected to have an impact on open businesses, parking, vehicular, and/or pedestrian traffic flow and requires the use of City services and/or City property;
  • Filming requiring setup of barricades, street closure, lane closure, or sidewalk closure;
  • Night-time filming in a residential area with the use of an outdoor light;
  • Use of intellectual property belonging to the City;
  • Pyrotechnics or other explosives;
  • Smoke effects, water effects, or flame effects;
  • Display of real or artificial firearms or any scenes involving crime recreation;
  • Vehicle chases and/or crashes;
  • Filming in buildings that are owned by the City and not leased to a third party, or in a building of which the city is a lessee;
  • Filming in any city park
 
NOTE: ALL FILM PERMIT APPLICATIONS REQUIRE A CERTIFICATE OF INSURANCE IN WHICH THE CITY OF PITTSBURGH IS LISTED AS AN ADDITIONAL INSURED. PLEASE SEE THE “GETTING STARTED” DOCUMENT FOR INSURANCE REQUIREMENTS. FOR STUDENTS CURRENTLY ENROLLED IN A COLLEGE OR UNIVERSITY FILM PROGRAM, INSURANCE FROM YOUR COLLEGE OR UNIVERSITY IS ACCEPTABLE.

 PLEASE INCLUDE THE FOLLOWING ADDRESS ON YOUR CERTIFICATE OF INSURANCE:
 

CITY OF PITTSBURGH
OFFICE OF SPECIAL EVENTS
414 GRANT STREET ROOM 462
PITTSBURGH, PA 15219



THANK YOU FOR CHOOSING PITTSBURGH FOR YOUR PROJECT!