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CMU Master Plan to go in front of Planning Commission Feb 7

CMU Master Plan goes to the Planning Commission for approval – bike lane proposal moved from main body of the Plan to the appendix

CMU is about to submit their Master Plan to the Planning Commission. For over a year, we’ve been getting residents, students, and bike advocates to show up en masse to CMU’s Master Planning public meetings where there has been a proposal on the table to change the configuration of Forbes Ave through the heart of the campus.  The proposal is to reduce the four lanes of travel to two, matching the current lanes at the bookends of the project, and to extend the existing bike lanes from Squirrel Hill.

A new development has emerged in the Plan that they submitted to the Commission for approval.  CMU removed the bike lane plan from the main body of the text, but included it in the appendix as a recommendation to the Master Plan.  In plain language, they decided that, since they don’t own the road, their Master Plan isn’t an appropriate place to plan someone else’s (PennDOT) road. Since it’s going in front of the Planning Commission, they did not want to potentially derail the adoption of the new Plan as the current one is set to expire in May 2012. The bike lanes are not off the table or scrapped, as has been reported.

From CMU:

The Pittsburgh Department of City Planning has scheduled the first public hearing regarding Carnegie Mellon’s 2012 Institutional Master Plan.  The hearing before the Planning Commission is scheduled for 2PM on Tuesday, February 7th, 2012 at 200 Ross St.  The public hearing before the Planning Commission is the next step in the Zoning Code-required approval process for the University’s master plan; the current 2002 Campus Plan will expire in May 2012.  As required, the Department posted placards on Tuesday, January 17th and began mailing notices to adjoining property owners on the same day.

The University has conducted dozens of public meetings to garner input on the plan and, as a result of this input, the plan has evolved for the better.  Since the original submission of the plan in September 2011, the plan has continued to evolve and it is important that our community, business and institutional partners understand changes that are now part of the master plan being considered by the Planning Commission.

[R]eferences to any proposed lane configuration changes, including the bike lane scenario, to Forbes Ave (as part of the PCTI planning process) are removed from the main body of the master plan text.  Understanding that while Forbes Ave is embedded in the Carnegie Mellon campus, it is a state-owned road, and thus any safety enhancement changes proposed would need to be designed, reviewed and implemented under PennDOT jurisdiction.  Instead, the PCTI report, which was completed in 2011 and included State, City and Community input, is being included for reference only in the Master Plan appendices.  Carnegie Mellon still has serious concerns for pedestrian, bicycle and vehicular safety on Forbes Ave and other City streets within the campus, and so the master plan does include recommendations to assess conditions, and, in working with residents, businesses and institutions, to develop plans to work to improve safety for all means of travel in the Forbes corridor.  The University looks forward to working with our partners in the near future to create an environment that serves all sectors while still being safe for residents, students and all others.

The revised Carnegie Mellon 2012 Institutional Master Plan is now available on the University’s website at www.cmu.edu/cdfd..... ; if you have any questions or comments please contact either Bob Reppe at breppe@andrew.cmu.edu or John Hannon at jfhannon@andrew.cmu.edu.

The Planning Commission Meeting:

  • Tuesday, Feb 7, 2012
  • 2pm
  • 200 Ross St, Pittsburgh

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