East Liberty Blvd goes on a Road Diet, gets new Bike Lanes!

East Liberty Blvd undergoes a safety improving “road diet.” This is in front of Peabody High School

A pretty dramatic change happened on East Liberty Blvd (ELB) this weekend. Not only did it get a much needed paving, but a new bike lane went in, replacing a “regular” lane of traffic. Bike Pittsburgh worked with the City and East Liberty Development, Inc to create this much needed improvement. This “road diet” has the added benefit of slowing down traffic on this previously fast-paced road. Slowing traffic is especially important here because ELB passes in front of Peabody High School at Highland Ave. Basically, this once four lane road no longer needed two car lanes in each direction for the amount of traffic that it currently carries. In many cases, like this one, when there were two lanes in each direction, with very few other cars on it, it gave the impression that the road could be treated like a highway. With the added improvements, it brings the road back to the neighborhood level, reducing speeds along the way.

This 1.5 mile stretch of road connects Negley Ave to Frankstown Ave and Hamilton Ave, providing a great alternative to the dense and narrow Penn Ave. Frankstown and Hamilton continue toward Homewood, Point Breeze, Frick Park, and Wilkinsburg while you can take Negley to Friendship for a great connection to Bloomfield and Lawrenceville, avoiding Penn altogether.

The wide lane also makes this a “trailer safe” riding area if you need to cart kids towards Frick Park.

We applaud the city’s lead on our first road diet and look forward to working with them on future diets.

Send some thanks!

Some thanks are in order, so send them to show your appreciation for these safety improvements.

East Liberty Development, Inc
Call or write 311
The City of Pittsburgh Bike/ped coordinator, Stephen Patchan
City of Pittsburgh’s Dept of City Planning and Public Works

Let’s celebrate!

We’re going to co-celebrate this remarkable achievement with the celebration of the launch of our 2009 Bike Map.

What: Bike Pittsburgh 2009 Map Launch and East Liberty Blvd Celebration Party
Music, food, art and good company.
We’ll provide snacks and beer from the East End Brewing Company (the official beer of Bike PGH)
Where: deepLocal’s Office in East Liberty: 6101 Penn Ave suite 602 (sixth floor), corner of Penn Ave and Sheridan Ave
When: Thursday, October 16, 2008 7pm-10pm (we’ll be going to Kelly’s afterward to hang out)


  • KBrooks says:

    This is amazing. Thanks, BikePgh, for what must have been a lot of hard work to get this!

  • keevohn says:

    A truly great achievement. However, there needs to be enforcement. In the short time they’ve been open I’ve seen multiple cars speeding up the bike lane to avoid the now heavier traffic in the driving lane. While I believe that this will a long-term safety improvement, in the short-term I’ll be watching my back.

  • bjanaszek says:

    Yeah, this is awesome. Nice work. And I’ve already sent my thanks to the city, too.

    I agree about enforcement. I’m guessing that adding a few reflective posts along the outer edge of the lane would help, too.

  • gimpPAC says:

    I just got back from a weekend trip to DC and I thought that I was imagining things when I saw a skinnier right lane on East Lib… They apparently had just striped the lanes, but hadn’t yet marked it with the shared lane symbol. My roommate and I did a little dance in the car. :) I remember going to a meeting about it in the earlier stages and it never seemed like we’d be at this point this fast.

    I will certainly pass on my thanks to the city and our new bike guy. Ditto on the enforcement: we too saw some dude flying down the newly marked bike path. Education for the public will be key as well.

  • Jake M says:

    Ditto on the education remark. I actually had a friend call me up to ask if he was allowed to drive in the bike lane. I would agree that enforcement is important, but we should at least make sure that people know they’re breaking the law.

    With that said, mad props to everyone who got the lanes installed! This town just keeps getting better and better, and it’s thanks to all of you folks. Keep on kickin’ butt.

  • lc3249 says:

    I think it was city government as usual, special interest got the ear of some one and with out public input made major changes in the traffic patterns. I think it sucks. ELDI has bitched up a storm about the public not having input into what goes on in the east end, and here you a major traffic change for a few cyclist. I travel that section every day I don’t recall a cyclist being on that road, I’m not saying they don’t use it, but I still think it sucks.

  • amagross says:

    These new lanes are so exciting!

    I used to avoid East Liberty entirely due to the potholes and traffic. The new lanes have made my neighborhood safer and more accessible.


  • […] what Bike Pittsburgh has to […]

  • forthepeople says:

    I travel E. Lib Blvd many times a day-and have for the last 25 years.I wonder how many folks who lobbied for this actually depend on it daily? If speeding is an issue, police needed to enforce the laws more effectively. In almost 3 wks of beautiful weather since the lanes were created, I haven’t seen one bike using it. With the most development in thirty years, E. Liberty’s traffic is growing. Now that we’re finally getting attention for long overdue infrastructure investment from our tax dollars, we’re denied the use of these main access roads to a special interest group which doesn’t seem to understand the wider negative impacts in loosing transportation options in this neighborhood.

  • erok says:

    Let me get this straight. Redesigning a road so that it’s safer for all users, and multiple types of transport (other than a car) is somehow “loosing[sic] transportation options.”

    Wasn’t a new transportation option, that previously didn’t exist because it was too dangerous for most people, just open up?

    The only transportation option lost is the option to drive over the speed limit and use this road as a speedway past homes, churches, and a high school.

    could it be that you didn’t see any cyclists because you were driving too fast? Cyclists too need to learn that ELB is even an option now, and a much better one than Penn.

    nobody was riding on the abandoned railroad tracks to DC before the trail was put in. Now there’s a multi-million dollar industry and economic development along it.

  • Anonymous says:

    zing. can’t wait to check this out even though I live in Sq. Hill.

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