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Scorching temperatures are in the forecast for Pittsburgh

The Downtown Pittsburgh skyline on a sunny, clear summer day.
Keith Srakocic

The heatwave that gripped the western U.S. over the weekend now has its sights set on Pittsburgh. After thunderstorms pass through the region Monday evening, the temperatures will begin to soar into record territory by Wednesday.

The mercury will rise into the upper 80s Tuesday before reaching 95 degrees Wednesday and remaining in the 90s for Thursday.

National Weather Service

While Pittsburgh’s city pools don’t open until Saturday, spray parks and playgrounds with water features will be up and running. According to a CitiParks spokesperson, that does not include Burgwin and Beechview parks, which are undergoing maintenance.

The city will activate four of its cooling centers Wednesday and Thursday with expanded hours of operation from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.:

  • Greenfield at 745 Greenfield Avenue
  • Homewood at 7321 Frankstown Road
  • Sheraden at 720 Sherwood Avenue
  • South Side Market House at 12th and Bingham Streets

CitiParks currently requires masks inside the cooling centers, many of which are senior centers, as a COVID-19 precaution. CitiParks recreation centers will also be open during regular hours. A full list of locations is available on the city’s website.

According to the National Weather Service, heat advisories could be issued for the region Wednesday and Thursday, though none have been called for as of Monday. Regardless, meteorologist Jason Frazier argues people should be preparing to take precautions to protect themselves.

“It’s good to know that the heat is coming, for people to kind of prepare,” he said. “Limit their outdoor exposure, definitely drinking lots of water if you have to be outside, especially on Wednesday.”

Frazier said the humidity would climb along with the temperatures this week. “We will have moisture in the air, so that combined with a very high air temperature will make heat index values approach our heat warning criteria,” he said.

Frazier said another cold front would arrive Thursday and bring a round of showers and thunderstorms, dropping temperatures to 90. Following those storms, more seasonable temperatures will arrive Friday and through the weekend.

Kiley Koscinski covers city government, policy and how Pittsburghers engage with city services. She also works as a fill-in host for All Things Considered. Kiley has previously served as a producer on The Confluence and Morning Edition.