BikePGH!

July 3: Join as the Mayor announces protected bike lane plans

This topic contains 263 replies, has 43 voices, and was last updated by  erok 4 days, 12 hrs.

Viewing 40 posts - 1 through 40 (of 264 total)
 
Author Posts
Author Posts

erok

Private Message

Jul 2 2014 at 1:39pm #

Sorry this is so last minute, but that’s how this goes.

Tomorrow July 3

11am at Schenley Visitor’s Center

Press conference for the Mayor to announce the summer’s plans for installing protected bike lanes.

More info about the event to shortly….Just wanted to get this out there.

Come one, come all.


salty

Private Message

Jul 2 2014 at 1:44pm #

Is that this building? Sounds exciting!

PS: how’s the knee?


erok

Private Message

Jul 2 2014 at 1:48pm #

correct.

PS. – It’s doing fine


Benzo

Private Message

Jul 2 2014 at 1:51pm #

Sweet, I can probably walk (or ride over to this) on my lunch break!


RustyRed

Private Message

Jul 2 2014 at 2:14pm #

Arrrgh! They don’t let me out of my cage until 12:30! Boooo!


J Z

Private Message

Jul 2 2014 at 2:46pm #

Dude…shoot, probably I’ll be on the wrong side of town @ that time.


byogman

Private Message

Jul 2 2014 at 3:14pm #

I definitely plan to go.

Probably starting from home, but if there are a decent number of folks planning to leave from downtown who respond to this idea, was thinking we could, say, mass together and ride straight up Forbes. Seems like good fun and good messaging.

No matter what, just want to see us turn out for this.


erok

Private Message

Jul 2 2014 at 3:17pm #

As soon as this is “officially” announced, we’ll be upping the promo


Swalfoort

Private Message

Jul 2 2014 at 6:24pm #

I’ll see if I can sneak out of the office to be there.


byogman

Private Message

Jul 3 2014 at 6:04am #

Was looking for a “top” here, didn’t see but it’s on the home page. Anyways, given the short notice don’t really expect any massing, but I’ll start hanging out on Forbes just east of grant at 10:30, planned departure 10:35-10:40. If anyone wants to ride with, great, if not no worries.


erok

Private Message

Jul 3 2014 at 8:11am #

yeah, we were waiting to see what the mayor’s office was going to announce in the media advisory, but it wasn’t anything new, so top


byogman

Private Message

Jul 3 2014 at 12:03pm #

I like the noises I’m hearing, the sense of urgency to get some things in now (before labor day and bike/ped conference) and it was nice to see decent turnout despite the very short notice and awkward timing.

I was unspeakably disappointed to see the green lane in Oakland ending at the interchange instead of continuing along Panther Hollow Rd. into Greenfield. I guess what the mayor probably said just after the ride of silence was connecting to here (schenley plaza) and to greenfield not from here to greenfield.

Guess I should have figured going to take more money and time to redo that abomination. I hope the fact that they’re putting a green lane to it means it’s very, very high in the priority list.


J Z

Private Message

Jul 3 2014 at 12:07pm #

Thanks for reporting, saw the twitterstorm and am hopeful and pleased about what on its face seems to be an administration that has bought into the paradigm. Didn’t see any negative blowback, yet, either.


buffalo buffalo

Private Message

Jul 3 2014 at 12:42pm #

I was unspeakably disappointed to see the green lane in Oakland ending at the interchange instead of continuing along Panther Hollow Rd. into Greenfield. I guess what the mayor probably said just after the ride of silence was connecting to here (schenley plaza) and to greenfield not from here to greenfield.

I was also disappointed at how short and unconnected the Schenley Park* lane is, but the narrow, expressway-style ramps at Panther Hollow and Boulevard of the Allies make going any further than that a longer-term project. I did get the impression from talking to people afterward that it is still on the table, it just wasn’t going to be doable by September.

(* This isn’t Oakland. It’s entirely within Schenley Park. Which is nice to have directly next to Oakland, but seriously let’s not pretend this is actually in Oakland at all.)


byogman

Private Message

Jul 3 2014 at 1:03pm #

“I did get the impression from talking to people afterward that it is still on the table, it just wasn’t going to be doable by September.”

Anything specific on the table, ways it might run, projects it might come along as a rider with, or was it just generally positive vibe?


erok

Private Message

Jul 3 2014 at 1:09pm #

correct. there has been a lot of research into the use of panther hollow rd, however, they do want to do more community input, analysis, etc which i think in the long run will be a better project. There is a lot of incentive to connect to greenfield rd and on to pocussett as well. However, putting anything on greenfield is a bit moot for the next couple years as the bridge replacement project is about to start, and greenfield rd will be closed to cars anyway. They do intend to keep it open for bikes to get down and access pucussett, which is good. i think this is a heckuva good start.


Benzo

Private Message

Jul 3 2014 at 1:14pm #

I just wonder how the left turn from schenly dr (the flat part by phipps) to schenly dr (you know the uphill part towards the golf course / squirrel hill) will work. This was always confusing before any changes.

This always seemed like they wanted a traffic circle here, but just forgot to actually put the circle part in the middle.


byogman

Private Message

Jul 3 2014 at 1:41pm #

Understood about greenfield rd. It’ll be a nice little bike playground for a while.

The greenfield bridge outage cuts both ways. On the one hand it disconnects greenfield itself. But on the other hand, it makes it more important to have better routes other than coming up greenfield avenue for folks living in squirrel hill and beyond. On balance, I think it makes Panther Hollow Rd. an even more important connector. I really hope something can be done there before the greenfield bridge is out.

Benzo’s point about the intersection with the rising part of schenley drive is interesting. I’ve always wondered generally how you’re supposed to smoothly transition into and out of a cycle-track either to road or bike lanes and always thought keeping side=direction of travel was a nice invariant. If traffic volumes are low enough you can get away with anything, but if they’re not I just don’t see a way to do it that’s smooth that doesn’t involve some (presumably expensive) over/under.


edmonds59

Private Message

Jul 3 2014 at 1:51pm #

Thinking strategically, since the Greenfield bridge project will put a huge crimp in the number of suburbanites using Schenley Park to escape the city to the Parkway East, that would be the BEST possible time to reconfigure the whole stretch of Panther Hollow freeway – I mean road – from SOakland to SQuill. That is, if something could be done in the same time frame.


Pierce

Private Message

Jul 3 2014 at 2:21pm #

http://www.wtae.com/news/bicycleonly-lane-planned-for-downtown-pittsburgh/26593658#!7Ruv1

I can see the utility in a protected bike lane in Schenley where it’s at, but Saline St? This is the area by Big Jims that already has a separated trail. I’ve never really felt any car pressure on that stretch of road and there’s parking on both sides


byogman

Private Message

Jul 3 2014 at 2:26pm #

The idea makes me more than a little nervous, but with the lane rerouting/congestion on the bridge and a later start to the speedway, on more than one occasion recently I found myself unusually tempted to just start riding that damn road uphill, too. I still don’t know if I have the nerve. But I do know that if enough cyclists do that, the motorists would BEG for a lane to be created.


byogman

Private Message

Jul 3 2014 at 2:28pm #

Yeah, I thought the saline street separated lane was a bit silly, too. I think they’re just starting places it’s comparatively easy.


Steven

Private Message

Jul 3 2014 at 2:50pm #

Will the downtown lanes be set up as two separate bike lanes with the car lanes moved to the middle? Or will both bike lanes be in the place where the westbound lane is now?

(If the latter, it seems it would be difficult for westbound cyclists entering the bike lane to cut across from the north side of the street to the south, crossing over the lanes of eastbound traffic. How would that work?)


HiddenVariable

Private Message

Jul 3 2014 at 3:48pm #

(If the latter, it seems it would be difficult for westbound cyclists entering the bike lane to cut across from the north side of the street to the south, crossing over the lanes of eastbound traffic. How would that work?)

i was wondering this too, while biking through there yesterday, there’s a signal every block, with slow-moving and light traffic, and if i have to cross the street to use the bike lane inbound, i just don’t see myself ever doing that. it would be much easier and safer to just keep with traffic (and perhaps get beeped at and told to use the bike lane, sigh).

also, the post gazette article says the greenfield bike lane will be along saline from swinburne to greenfield. this can’t be accurate, unless they possibly mean from underneath the swinburne bridge. this couldn’t possibly mean the end to the cattle chute and a legitimate jail trail connection, right?


HiddenVariable

Private Message

Jul 3 2014 at 4:08pm #

i should add that i am super excited that this is happening. i always expected that having peduto as a mayor would be good for biking in the city, but i never really imagined he would be biking himself, and certainly not for work purposes.

there’s a lot still to do, but this sort of feels like the snowball that bike pittsburgh’s been pushing up the hill these past ten years is about to start rolling down it.


edmonds59

Private Message

Jul 3 2014 at 4:12pm #

I was wondering something similar about the 2nd ave cattle chute. I’m hoping no one in a position of authority thinks that is currently an acceptable “protected bike lane”.


andyc

Private Message

Jul 3 2014 at 4:17pm #

On the greenfield map, I originally thought the red lines indicated where bike lanes would be installed. I thought to myself: “Well, that’s one way of trying to make a healthier population!” (Looking at the line going up Bigelow St in Greenfield…)


andyc

Private Message

Jul 3 2014 at 4:19pm #

Seriously though, putting the lines around Schenley park where noted is ignoring several elephants.


Steven

Private Message

Jul 4 2014 at 3:16am #

also, the post gazette article says the greenfield bike lane will be along saline from swinburne to greenfield. this can’t be accurate, unless they possibly mean from underneath the swinburne bridge.

The map makes it pretty clear that the lane will run along Saline from Greenfield Avenue to a point just short of where Saline goes under the Swinburne Street bridge. That means it will connect up to the existing path that currently just connects to the Saline Street sidewalk here:

this couldn’t possibly mean the end to the cattle chute and a legitimate jail trail connection, right?

The map shows no changes in the vicinity of the cattle chute. For that matter, it doesn’t show the cattle chute, just the road it’s on.

Maybe the maps are a little hard to interpret? Each one has a light green ribbon showing which roads get the lanes. All the darker green bits, red lines, and so forth, have nothing to do with the this project. The red lines, for instance, are not routes but mark neighborhood boundaries. (And calling them “preliminary designs” as the papers do is very generous. These are the equivalent of taking an existing map and applying a magic marker along a few roads.)


StuInMcCandless

Private Message

Jul 4 2014 at 7:24am #

That little snippet of trail in the prior post is just wide enough for one bike, has two blind curves, and is very difficult to get onto from either direction. That, and the knotweed hangs out over half of the available surface. It really isn’t much of a trail, unfortunately.

I surely hope this on-street plan provides a well-marked alternative to using that.


edmonds59

Private Message

Jul 4 2014 at 8:45am #

I’m already mentally preparing myself to respond to the shouts of “get on the bike path!!”. Been doing that for 40 some years, that should go well.


Pierce

Private Message

Jul 4 2014 at 4:24pm #

Saline st where the trail is is marked with signs from the city saying that parking is going to be removed in the next few weeks. I’m wondering how many of those cars are going to end up in the trail head parking spaces


quizbot

Private Message

Jul 6 2014 at 1:45am #

I’m all behind whatever the city is doing with protected lanes. It is a huge positive that we have a mayor that “gets it” and is actively and quickly implementing improvements.

But while I’m supportive of the new protected lanes, I think that they are really obscure choices for actual daily commuters. This just feels like ease of use for weekend trail riders. But I’ll take it if it means more people on bikes in the city.

I am disappointed that there’s really nothing more practical in the offerings for commuters. What about long lasting cycling infrastructure improvement opportunities such as the major ongoing rebuild of the Garfield Penn Ave corridor? It’s a virtual blank slate for a protected bicycle commuter lane. My understanding is that everything up to the storefronts is being replaced from Mathilda to Negley during a several year phased plan…. sidewalks, roads, drainage, traffic controls, etc. But no protected bike lane? So infuriating.

So far the motorists are dealing with the current one lane inbound restriction up there fairly well. No major riots. And I see no reason that their compliance with current restrictions wouldn’t be the norm given inclusive planning for cyclists moving forward.

Penn in Garfield is a VAST lost opportunity for implementing something practical for the future of a bicycle commuting infrastructure in Pittsburgh. It’s a 20 year mistake that is being implemented now. And there’s nothing we can do to stop it.


jonawebb

Private Message

Jul 6 2014 at 6:35am #

@quiz, you probably know this, but major projects like Penn-Garfield are planned years in advance, so there’s no way our new mayor could have an impact on it. But it is a huge lost opportunity, for sure.


StuInMcCandless

Private Message

Jul 6 2014 at 8:23am #

Having decent pavement and other infrastructure in place on Penn does allow us to re-jigger paint and parking along there later. Baby steps.

I’m more worried about Penn from Braddock to Fifth. Slow that damn street down to 25 and enforce it. If we need PennDOT to abandon the “380” designation first, then let’s do that. That road has been a speedway since they paved over the trolley tracks and bricks around 1985.


David Mooney

Private Message

Jul 6 2014 at 3:41pm #

Glad I’m not the only one concerned about the left turn issue.

Protected lanes are one of those “greatest good for the greatest number” developments that is long over due and I hope they put in many more miles. But for those of us who’ve been riding on roads for decades there are going to be unintended consequences–the left turn issue being one. I would much rather continue riding with traffic, signalling as I move to left into the flow to make the turn. Another thought: If a lot of new and novice cyclists use the cycle tracks–and I hope they do–will it start to feel like riding on the trails on a nice weekend morning? I.e., very slow riders with a demonstrable lack of spatial awareness, in which case jumping out of the track and back onto the road will be mighty inviting.

Did anyone else catch Corey O’Connor’s hilarious and historically ignorant remark about cycling being a “relatively new form of transportation”?


quizbot

Private Message

Jul 6 2014 at 10:41pm #

@jonawebb yep, I am sadly aware of how it works. This project was supposed to begin construction in 2008 (PG link) but was derailed due to budget. It was also to include Penn Ave from Main in Bloomfield to Penn Circle W Euclid Ave (1.5 mi). The current 2 phase plan has been cut back to include only Matilda to Aiken (.54 mi).

Someone lost a mile and 6 years somewhere.


Marko82

Private Message

Jul 7 2014 at 7:45am #

@DavidM, Corey also made an improv comment about his bike coming from toys-r-us because he’s so short. Unfortunately I think it reflects his understanding of cycling more than his height.

And we can only hope that the cycle lanes become too crowded – but I agree with your assessment.


Benzo

Private Message

Jul 7 2014 at 9:03am #

I think it would be nice to have penn with bikeways, however I don’t think it’s going to happen where the reconstruction is happening because of the narrow street and lack of willingness to give up parking.

I do think that reconnecting broad st through east liberty and making that a two way bike priority road would be a very helpful solution as an alternative to penn ave, combined with a more central bike priority st on friendship ave (with a better connection over at the intersection with baum blvd and euclid st). With that, we could really improve east / west connectivity.

I would love to see this happen, as well as get bike infrastructure on penn where it is viable, like between negley and center ave on penn. Connect this to broad and friendship with some bike lanes on the wide section of negley, and we could have a nice route through the main east liberty business district and further west towards lawrenceville.

This is just brainstorming and all…


dfiler

Private Message

Jul 7 2014 at 3:11pm #

Some of my cycling friends have been rather critical of 3 protected bike routes that were chosen.

To offer a bit of hope, consider this. The goal wasn’t to pick the 3 most needed routes. While that is most appealing to people commuting today, it is not usually a viable strategy. And this is why it is good that the quarter million dollar grant is being used for advice and continued consulting.

It is my understanding that cities with wide-spread bike lane build out have achieved that quicker by choosing their battles wisely and at the right times. By picking the low hanging fruit, bike lanes will get built with little opposition. Once built, they will become “normal” in most people’s eyes. And that’s the key to success. Once people see bike lanes as a normal part of the city, knee-jerk opposition to future development will decrease.

The schenely lane is definitely low hanging fruit. It won’t eliminate much parking and won’t slow down car traffic. Once the easy cheap section is built, extending it through more costly and controversial areas becomes easier.

The same is true with saline. I would bet that eventually we will see the cattle chute expanded or replaced. The way to do push that through is to build a bike lane directly up to it so that it becomes obvious how insufficient it is. A one block striping and bollard project will hopefully spur that more involved reconfiguration.

But what really surprises me is that the penn avenue lane downtown didn’t seem like low hanging fruit. Instead it seems like the exact opposite. It could outrage motorists. On the other hand, it will be seen by thousands of people every day. Those thousands of people will begin to incorporate bike lanes into their image of pittsburgh. When they take pride in their city, it will (hopefully) include a forward thinking downtown and an ever expanding system of bike lanes.

I believe that the mayor and other city officials are in favor of a fully realized system of bike lanes. I also believe they are pursuing it quite aggressively and with the best outside help that a quarter million dollars can purchase. While the first three bike lanes will do me personally absolutely no good, I am hopeful that they were chosen upon good advice.

I could be wrong though. Anyone care to chime in with their thoughts on the selection process and the reasoning behind it?

Viewing 40 posts - 1 through 40 (of 264 total)
 

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.