Gap Trail announcement event

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eppi
Participant
#

I decided to start a new thread for this. I am guessing there is not much to announce that is not known. But if you are interested Dan Onorato is holding an announcement event at Sandcastle on October 19th at 11am.

11am at Sandcastle  Oct 19th


myddrin
Participant
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Oh please oh please let this be exactly what it looks like!


nick
Participant
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allegheny county is declaring war on sandcastle. as governor dan onorato well see that sandcastle burns to the ground and the soil will be salted so that nothing will ever grow there again.


Ohiojeff
Participant
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As it turns out, the deal with Sandcastle — an easement allowing the trail on park property — was wrapped up in July. But the county also needed an easement from the railroad, whose line runs along the edge of the park, and Mr. Onorato said he didn’t want to make an announcement until everything was in place.

Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/10290/1095960-455.stm#ixzz12i4UAWRq


Kordite
Participant
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I had been saying that there would be an announcement when it was more politically advantageous to do so and exactly two weeks before the election sounds about right.

I’m asking for the day off so I can attend. We’ll see if my employer is feeling generous.


Swalfoort
Participant
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This is very exciting! Yay!


Bikelove2010
Participant
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is unfortunately stuck working. but this is AWESOME!!!!!


bikeygirl
Participant
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AWESOME! AWESOME! AWESOME! :D


Greasefoot
Participant
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Bad ass!


edmonds59
Participant
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So…do you suppose they will think to open the gates with the monster sign so people can get to the event from the trail?


erok
Keymaster
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good question..


StuInMcCandless
Participant
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Isn’t that sign brand new? Why would they go to the expense of the fence and sign if they were just about to make things better for us? I mean, look at the first thread. It started a couple of years ago (8/2008), and got topped just over a week ago (10/10/10) when the sign was noticed, and bingo, suddenly there’s an announcement. They almost had us riled up enough to “do something” and not in a good way. I just don’t understand why they’d go to the trouble of pissing us off at the very moment they are about to appease us.


Lyle
Participant
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Left hand, right hand, split brain.


Swalfoort
Participant
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Or did they post the sign just so that they’d have something to REMOVE….


Marko82
Participant
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Stu, that sign has been there for awhile.

IMPORTANT: If going to the event tomorrow remember that you can NOT go via the south side trail due to construction at Becks run water treatment intake. I think going jail trail to 2nd ave. to Glenwood bridge would be most direct way from town, although not very pleasant. Is anyone interested in meeting up to ride out?


pghbikeguy
Participant
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“As it turns out, the deal with Sandcastle — an easement allowing the trail on park property — was wrapped up in July. But the county also needed an easement from the railroad, whose line runs along the edge of the park, and Mr. Onorato said he didn’t want to make an announcement until everything was in place.”

…and it makes good campaign fodder! LOL


Pittsbarb
Participant
#

I am definitely interested in meeting up to go to event. If Second Ave is the best way and not Carson. Want to meet at the Jail Trailhead? Is 10:30 a good time to shove off?


Pierce
Participant
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As somebody that takes second ave over the Glenwood bridge four times a week I can attest to it not being pleasant, but it is better than Carson. Second Ave is wider and cars occasionally have the opportunity to pass on your left, whereas Carson is very narrow for a long time with only two opposing lanes and so you either have to take the lane and slow down like 60 cars or try and let them pass and be forced to run over drain grates every 50 feet or so


Marko82
Participant
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How about meet at 10:15 at jail trail parking lot, leaving at 10:30. All are welcome to join us. (going 2nd ave.)


dbacklover
Participant
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make sure to get video


Pittsbarb
Participant
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ON second thought, if they can’t open up the trail then I’m not interested in going. It’s crazy to go on unpleasant roads to go to the announcement of the completion of a trail…


dwillen
Participant
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Second ave shouldn’t be as bad as everyone is saying, especially in a group, at 11:30 on a weekday. I imagine you will not have any problems at all.


ErinK
Participant
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I might be riding from Regent Square, depends how much I get done tonight. I haven’t decided whether to take Rankin Bridge or Homestead Grays.


Lyle
Participant
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From regent square, working your way down through swissvale west of braddock is pretty calm and you end up just at the end of the rankin bridge.

I’m not sure whether y’all are going to be on 2d ave or irvine, but I’ll second the comment that with a group, midday, on a weekday, you’ll be fine.


pratt
Participant
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regent square? I think Forbes, Beechwood, Homestead Bridge makes the most sense to me. That or Frick to Duck Hollow, then Homestead Bridge.


myddrin
Participant
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Wish I’d been able to make it. A facebook friend just posted some pics, looks like my sandcastle boycott if over.


erok
Keymaster
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The former owners of Sandcastle for years resisted efforts to build the trail through the park, saying there wasn’t enough room.

“The next time you visit Sandcastle take a close look at the tight access road and try to visualize a 10-foot-wide trail running between the road and the railroad tracks. I hope you will conclude that not having the available land wide enough for a trail does not make us stubborn,” said Peter McAneny, then-president of Kennywood Entertainment, in a 2008 letter to the Post-Gazette


Steven
Participant
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In fairness, it is pretty tight, and to get the 10 feet they wanted, the RR had to kick in some land too.

If he meant that Sandcastle alone didn’t have 10 spare feet, that’s not inconsistent with the eventual solution of combining their land with the RR land to make the path. (Of course he still could have been using the space issue as an excuse, to avoid doing what he didn’t want to for other reasons.)


edmonds59
Participant
#

Kordite was on the TV news with Dave Crawley (KDKA), represent.

Ironically the piece was followed by a report on the ongoing efforts of the family of a cyclist killed in 2005, in Blair County, Sean Pearce.


chinston
Participant
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Totally sweet. I can’t wait.


paulheckbert
Keymaster
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To see that KDKA video story on Tuesday’s event: do a google search for [kdka “kd country allegheny passage”].

The story wasn’t very deep; it didn’t mention Steel Valley Trail Council’s ongoing efforts to build the trail past Kennywood, and the engineering work that will be required near Keystone Metals, under the Glenwood Bridge.


Kordite
Participant
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eMcK
Participant
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Anybody got a map of the mew trail section? I’m interested how we’ll get through the scrap yard.


Kordite
Participant
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The map that was at the press conference just had a line running down the street. Completely inaccurate. The trail will run between the road and the railroad tracks, I’m not sure how much road will be lost or how far the existing fences may be moved. I haven’t heard any details on how it will get from the Glenwood Bridge to the end of the Baldwin Trail but I suspect that it may run where the “railfans” get by now because there is a significant hill and an old railroad pylon to get by.

Engineering apparently hasn’t started yet so I don’t think there are any actual plans yet.


Steven
Participant
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I think you can see the map Kordite mentions in the P-G video. The camera doesn’t get very close, but from that, it looks like they’re running the trail next to the CSX tracks, just like the existing part to the west and the Sandcastle part to the east. Of course that rough line on a map might mean nothing.

BTW, I wrote about a 10 foot path above, but the various articles say they’ll actually have an 8 foot path, and in one spot even less.

So in the end, Sandcastle didn’t give up the 10 feet it said it couldn’t spare (perhaps correctly). The trail compromised and accepted 2 feet less than the usual trail width, the railroad kicked in some land (a foot or two maybe?), and Sandcastle came up with the rest. A fine example of everybody compromising a little to get this finished.

387 days to go….


Marko82
Participant
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^^ I overheard a few “suits” talking at the dedication and they were commenting on how that will be probably be the last section completed. It will run on the scrap yard side, not through the gravel plant.


paulheckbert
Keymaster
#

Today’s Post-Gazette story:

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/10293/1096495-455.stm#ixzz12vXaVjuB

Sandcastle cedes land for last link of trail

Path will run from Pittsburgh to D.C.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

By Jon Schmitz, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Bicycles, rarely seen in the parking lot at Sandcastle Waterpark, were everywhere on Tuesday as riders celebrated the deal that will complete a trail network from Pittsburgh to Washington, D.C.

The park’s property was the last piece needed for the Great Allegheny Passage, and for the longest time, securing the owner’s permission was like pumping air into a punctured tire.

“A lot of you thought we’d never get to this day,” Allegheny County Executive Dan Onorato said at a ceremonial signing of an easement allowing construction of the last 0.85-mile trail segment. “You had a right to be skeptical.”

Years of resistance by Sandcastle’s operators melted away after the park was taken over by Palace Entertainment, a California-based subsidiary of Parques Reunidos.

“The new ownership really picked up the ball,” Mr. Onorato said. “They had a lot of things to worry about just running their business. They kept us as a priority.”

The agreement likely dissolved much of the ire in the region’s burgeoning cycling community toward the park.

Darla Cravotta, the county’s special projects coordinator, jokingly suggested that park general manager Damian Dondero try to sell season passes to the assembled cyclists.

“This is a crowd that hasn’t been purchasing,” she said to a wave of laughter.

“We’re looking forward to all the bikers that are coming up and down the trail,” Mr. Dondero said. “I’m looking forward to putting more bike racks at the entrance.”

The ceremony was a milestone in the county’s four-year effort to fill the last nine unfinished miles on the 150-mile Great Allegheny Passage, which connects in Cumberland, Md., with the C&O Towpath to Washington.

To do so, trail developers had to find a way across the Monongahela River at McKeesport, over busy freight railroad lines in Duquesne and Whitaker and through Sandcastle, which improbably turned out to be the hardest piece.

“There have been many miracles needed to be accomplished in this last nine miles,” said Linda McKenna Boxx, president of the Allegheny Trail Alliance, one of the trail’s developers. “We have a lot of work ahead of us to get the trail done by 11-11-11,” the county’s Nov. 11, 2011, target date, she said.

Ms. Boxx said contributions have been arriving from all over the U.S., from visitors who rode the trail. “People all over want this trail to be done,” she said. “This is a true testament to ‘If you build it, they will come.’ “

Cindy Dunn, deputy secretary of the state Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, said the trail attracted 750,000 visitors and generated $40 million in spending last year.

She suggested that trail advocates not rest on their saddles.

“On 1-1-12 let’s stand at the Point and look north,” she said. “Let’s run the Great Allegheny Passage to Erie and the Pennsylvania Wilds.”

Jon Schmitz: jschmitz@post-gazette.com


eppi
Participant
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Thanks for going, those who did. I wanted to attend but I was in Europe being tortured by the Bike Rental machines that would not work with any of my American Credit Cards because of the crappy insecure credit card standards.


edmonds59
Participant
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“On 1-1-12 let’s stand at the Point and look north,” she said. “Let’s run the Great Allegheny Passage to Erie and the Pennsylvania Wilds.”

Outstanding. I don’t know this person, but I like.


StuInMcCandless
Participant
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North: Like swalfoort said a few months back, let’s get a corridor in place that we can use soon, and then work on getting a trail in place along the corridor. A trail will sell itself as soon as we have people using the corridor.

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