I have a friend with a job in the South Side (neighborhood of 24th, near the river), lives in Export, and for the next year or two can’t really move either one closer to the other. The cost of that commute by motor vehicle is significant.
She liked busing part way in the AM but getting home was a tidge of a nightmare (took too long, and she’s patient). I’m trying to come up with ideas to make her life easier, and was wondering if anybody on here can help. I know SS traffic in a car is to be avoided, and there’s a pinch point on 376 between Churchill and the tunnel, but other than that I don’t know where she’s getting hung up in a car. I don’t know where the buses are slowing down either.
She’s going to have to drive some, and decent highway speeds are better than stop and go. I know sometimes the fastest/cheapest options are to go the wrong direction or overshoot a spell, then come back at it from another angle, but I don’t know the bus options down there well.
the only suggestion I could think of, if the tunnel is tolerable, would be to drive to Schenley, then bike through Panther Hollow to the Jail Trail. The hard ride is on the way home, and she could work up to it by maybe starting at the Eliza Furnace trail head and then upgrade to Schenley. She’s not so comfortable riding on roads (yet or possibly ever).
Can any body else think of another decent way to get from Export/Murraysville to SS using any mix of transport, for both a reasonable price and amount of time?
Two buses and a bike. Drive to Alpine Village park-and-ride. Board a P12 Holiday Park. Ride to East Busway at Wilkinsburg. Transfer to P3 East Busway-Oakland. Ride to some point in Oakland where a bike is tied up. Ideally change modes as close to Neville and Fifth as possible. Bike Neville to Boundary to trail to Hot Metal Bridge to destination. Afternoon is the reverse of this.
I can figure out more specifics of transfer points, fares, etc., but conceptually that’s how it’s done.
Or take the P12 all the way downtown, then bike via the Smithfield Street Bridge to the South Side and take the trail east. Outbound, it’s a flatter, easier route than climbing into Oakland, and saves the time needed to transfer.
The P12 goes via the busway, so it should be really fast outbound if you get on at, say, Grant at Seventh, or Penn Station. Get on before that and you’ll spend time in gridlock (but a bike makes it easy to get to the quickest stop).
Using Rack’N’Roll instead of tying up a bike someplace would let her take Stu’s Oakland route going inbound and the downtown route outbound.
Lifting a bike up onto the racks on those 1900s (often used on the P12) may be an issue, especially if she isn’t particularly tall. Difficult but doable. Navigating Downtown on a bike if you’re not used to it is difficult but doable, too.
With both, practice makes perfect.
Now that I think about it, she should be able to P12 it straight to the Negley stop, exit inbound; and reboard the P12 outbound at Negley. I don’t like this suggestion myself, since we run into the stupid driver problem, actually getting a driver to stop there, either direction. They’re at least expecting to stop at Wilkinsburg. Negley is a particularly miserable stop to flag an outbound P12 since you have zero notice that it’s coming, so there’s a major chance of pass-up there.
Don’t know which transit system she has tried but the Westmoreland County Transit has a 2F flyer that goes thru Export and appears to have a stop near the Blvd of the Allies and Grant. She could lock up a bike at PNC Firstside and cruise on in from there. Don’t know if that is helpful.