Tuesday, September 22, 2009

G-20 Minus Two - Security Measures & Media Preparations Full Steam Ahead in Downtown Pittsburgh

With two days to go before the opening of the Pittsburgh G-20 Summit, security measures and media preparations are well under way in the Downtown area.

The police presence is definitely more noticeable today. A Pittsburgh Police Bomb Squad truck raced up Liberty Avenue with sirens blazing and lights flashing just before noon today, and numerous police cruisers and paddy wagons, also with lights flashing, were visible at many Downtown intersections.

Steel barricades that had been stacked on sidewalks yesterday started to go up at the edge of sidewalks, leaving Penn Avenue storefronts looking like zoo cages.

Traffic conditions don't seem much different Downtown, with the exception of some localized congestion caused by several large trucks unloading what appeared to be more barricades. And plenty of pedestrians are still walking around town.

Also appearing Downtown and on the North Shore were several television satellite trucks. At least three were counted across the Allegheny River from the Convention Center. The Secret Service has limited the space available right next to the Convention Center, but that hasn't stopped news outlets from parking in other locations, apparently for the long haul.

Watch this space for more updates and live blogging from inside the Convention Center during the Summit.

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