BikePGH!

Bike lane to replace several blocks of free parking in the South Side

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buffalo buffalo

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Jul 18 2012 at 8:31pm #

I don’t see this parking as being much different from, say, Brereton Street in Polish Hill, where half a dozen residents routinely park against a retaining wall at the top of the hill, or various other parts of town. I don’t use it, and am not going to miss it–but I ride through this area occasionally, and compared to similar roads elsewhere, it feels like speeds are kept (relatively) low by the parking on both sides. It seems to me that removing the parking will make the road seem wider and more open, and cars will just go faster.

I think removing parking and adding bike lanes is generally not a bad thing. I’m just not sure in this particular case it’s going to help much.


Mick

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Jul 20 2012 at 5:46am #

Maybe if they put enough candlesticks or other traffic calmers in the road, it could help.


Mr. Destructicity

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Jul 20 2012 at 10:35am #

@ejwme – I walk by Rivas every day on my way to the T station, it’s been closed for months. Maybe even an year at this point. Not surprised, really, it’s a terrible location. They shoulda stayed in Carnegie.


ejwme

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Jul 20 2012 at 1:14pm #

:( Sigh. Nicaraguan cuisine shall remain on my list then.


Anonymous

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Jul 20 2012 at 2:12pm #

Just wondering, why is this section of bike lanes necessary? What about Bingham Street or the South Shore Trail? Don’t they essentially cover the same stretch, without major traffic?


Benzo

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Jul 20 2012 at 2:26pm #

There are a few advantages…

1) the trail officially closes at dark, while not enforced, it’s not well lit. This can be a more effective route at night. It takes a small light to be visible at night, but a very high power one to see effectively on an unlit trail.

2) the parking is unsafe and should probably be removed anyway, a newly wider road, even unmarked for 2 lanes will be adapted by drivers often as an additional traffic lane or cutaround will make the roadway even faster and more unsafe.

3) Adding the bike lane should provide a narrowing effect to the traffic lanes and provide a safer alternative for cyclists who choose to use the street.

4) This is part of the plan to connect cyclists to the CBD of the southside via downtown using the smithfield street bridge. This isn’t just one bike lane, it’s a series of bike lanes and sharrows that will link station square and the southside works.

5) The trails can be incredibly slow for commuting cyclists when they are filled with dog walkers, recreational walkers, joggers, and slower recreation cyclists.

6) The only way to connect to the trail or Bingham st from the smithfield st bridge requires either riding on to the sidewalk and / or going down a one way alley the wrong way to access… this isn’t the right way to do it. There should be a proper route for cyclists that doesn’t require these ‘workarounds’.


edmonds59

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Jul 20 2012 at 2:31pm #

Also there’s the stupid little sad section behind the Terminal building where someone has a sign that says “No bikes, pedestrians (arrow)” What is the story on that anyway?


Steven

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Jul 20 2012 at 3:33pm #

In April, Friends of the Riverfront posted a status message on the Three Rivers Heritage Trail group that addressed this:

“South Side Segment from 4th to 2nd. Easement from terminal Building secured, currently negotiating with CSX for property to connect straight through.”

The National Gateway railroad project is doing work in that general area, lowering some tracks by a foot to increase the clearance under the Smithfield Street Bridge for taller trains. That involves an extra parallel track segment for a while, as they dig out the new location. It could be that CSX is waiting for that activity to finish up before agreeing to give up any property. (This is entirely speculation, and it could be nothing to do with this.)


rsprake

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Jul 20 2012 at 3:46pm #

Cool. Glad to hear it.


Jacob McCrea

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Jul 23 2012 at 4:08pm #

Here is the Post-Gazette article on this, along with the comments you’d expect from the Facebook malcontents and cry-babies.

http://www.post-gazette.com/stories/news/transportation/pittsburgh-to-convert-south-side-free-parking-area-into-bike-lane-645797/

Also one of a few pro-bike comments from a consitently astute commenter:

“The city should have a bias toward using roads to get around, not as free parking for private property [i.e., cars] in public space.”


Greasefoot

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Jul 23 2012 at 4:34pm #

I went past this stretch a few times over the weekend and several new no parking signs have been put up by the City. But it looks like the people who park here are just ignoring the signs.


orionz06

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Jul 23 2012 at 4:50pm #

What is the frequency of using 311 that is considered abuse? Separate days. Say a car is parked there each day, daily reports acceptable? What if a pic is attached of their plate?


Marko82

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Jul 23 2012 at 5:12pm #

On Saturday evening I encountered about five cars parked on the bike trail by the casino. I asked one of the off duty cops who was directing traffic who I could call to report this. He said to call 911 – so I did. I told the dispatcher right away that it wasn’t an “emergency” and then told her about the illegally parked cars. When I came by an hour later there were fewer cars parked on the trail. Not sure if the owners moved them or a city tow truck helped them disappear.

***damn cyclist taking up ALL of our parking spaces***


Mick

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Jul 23 2012 at 5:33pm #

It looks to me like the edge of the casino parking lot needs to be more clearly marked. If I were parking (and every few months I do park a car) in that lot the way it’s pictured, I’d be right next to the car there.


buffalo buffalo

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Jul 23 2012 at 5:55pm #

Every one of those cars seems to be backed into position–I wonder if that’s a valet company’s fault…


Mick

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Jul 23 2012 at 6:09pm #

@b buffalo, the most distant car that is on the trail (right below the yellow shirted pedestrian) seems to be in head first.


Marko82

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Jul 23 2012 at 7:06pm #

I’m pretty sure this is an employee lot. It was very full because there was a sold out Pirate game that night (fireworks too). It’s very obvious that the trail is separate from the parking lot, and I think they just didn’t care where they parked – just like the cars in the bike lane on Neville.


reddan

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Jul 23 2012 at 7:12pm #

My personal favorite is when the employees are driving on the trail itself in order to park in that “lot”, and become offended that there is a legitimate trail user in their way.


bear250220

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Jul 25 2012 at 2:00am #

i almost got hit there last year by a casino employee parking there


ejwme

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Jul 25 2012 at 5:21pm #

looks like there’s an opportunity for some official reaching out / education for the Casino from some kind of cycling advocacy organization that carries local weight and has some delightfully charming and persuasive yet overworked employees… Hmm…


sloaps

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Jul 26 2012 at 12:29am #

I biked up and down that stretch of Carson, and something seems to be afoot. Cores have been taken for the sidewalk and street, while sewerage, storm, electric and comm lines have been marked.

Is verizon going to tear up that section of Carson, and then we get bike lanes?

Also, the outbound part carson at 7th street where the road necks down to two travel lanes and no parking on either side will be bad for everyone other than tie fighters.


Pierce

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Jul 26 2012 at 12:56am #

sloaps, clearly you have not been in PA long enough

They’re going to put down some nice thermoplastic bicycle markings on the street, and THEN tear it up for Verizon/People’s Gas, PSWA whatever


StuInMcCandless

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Jul 26 2012 at 3:10am #

No, they’re going to put down a nice layer of asphalt first, then the thermoplastic markers, THEN tear it up to put in utility lines.


quizbot

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Jul 26 2012 at 3:22am #

This makes me wonder when the sharrows on Hamilton & Friendship will be reinstalled.


rsprake

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Jul 26 2012 at 1:30pm #

Thanks for reminding me to submit that to 311.


ejwme

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Jul 26 2012 at 1:35pm #

I believe Penn Hills recently passed a law that if a utility dug into the street within 2 years of it’s repaving, they had to repair it to brandy-new status (not the piss poor patches they used to do), or else pay PH the cost to re-pave the whole road. It’s changed the digging order nicely in a few places. I think Monroeville has a similar one, though I can’t be sure. Pgh could do with an ordinance like that.


Pierce

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Jul 26 2012 at 2:12pm #

But even then, the customers still foot the bill and the people driving on the road still have to deal with the inconvenience.

For example, in West Mifflin on 885, which goes right by my job, was repaved with tar and chip about two years ago. My MP3 player fell out of my pannier and subsequently got paved into the road.

Shortly after that, they tore out the shoulders and put in some nice asphalt shoulders, which were smoother than the main road.

Now they’ve tore up all the asphalt again and are putting in these weird lane-sized concrete squares in the ground. (I should get a photo for Sloaps)


sarah_q

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Jul 27 2012 at 1:33pm #

http://www.post-gazette.com/stories/opinion/letters/bicyclists-must-follow-the-rules-of-the-road-646419/

Letter to the editor about the bike lane today in the PG. Once again, the theory is that cars obey all traffic rules unlike cyclists. Infuriating.


Anonymous

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Jul 27 2012 at 2:21pm #

Probably, as a bicyclist community we should at some point conduct experiments. Let say 20-50 of us with some sort of cameras staying during rush and non rush hours at different intersections, street stretches with posted speed limits 25-35 and taking cars and license plates on cameras. And then create a special account (bike-pgh?) on youtube and posting those videos there with some info — number of car violated the rules. And video can help estimate speed of vehicle. This is going to be a killing argument.


Pseudacris

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Jul 27 2012 at 2:22pm #

The “Cars Hitting Buildings” thread could also be a public google map…


rsprake

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Jul 27 2012 at 2:28pm #

I’ve been keeping track of all the reported incidents.


Anonymous

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Jul 27 2012 at 4:16pm #

@rsprake, i love that tumblr idea. its more focused than the actual forum, but still keeps the same (sarcastic) feeling.


sloaps

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Aug 2 2012 at 8:48pm #

Turn that frahn upside dahn, there’s a new bike lane in tahn.


Erica

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Aug 2 2012 at 8:52pm #

Nice! just in time for my group ride next week!


Anonymous

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Aug 2 2012 at 9:00pm #

Looks beautiful, a nice addition to that area, I will definitely make that part of my ride this evening.


Anonymous

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Aug 2 2012 at 9:10pm #

for those whom have not yet had the opportunity to see the lane in person.

these were taken on 08/02 around 1pm @ 3rd ave & carson.

big trucks were in the area, but i didnt feel squished at all.

Photobucket

Photobucket


Benzo

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Aug 2 2012 at 10:09pm #

2nd picture. car riding over line into bike lane. didn’t take long.


Benzo

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Aug 2 2012 at 10:10pm #

wish there was a bit of buffer space between the bike lane and traffic lane…


Anonymous

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Aug 2 2012 at 10:17pm #

still beats the pants off of illegally parked cars. :D


Marko82

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Aug 2 2012 at 10:20pm #

Yeah I came through there around 4pm while I was spray painting road hazards for Sunday’s ride. It took all of my self control to not “mark” the car/hazard that was parked in the bike lane, I mean that can was right there in my jersy pocket… At least there was a ticket under the wiper blade.

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