Millvale Borough Bicycle/Pedestrian Committee
I just received word of this new initiative to promote cycling and walking in Millvale. If you can, please attend their first meeting, which will include a tour of Millvale by bike.
Text of the email I received from Joe McLaughlin, chair of the committee:
I’m Joe McLaughlin, the Chair of the MBBPC. You’re getting this email because I somehow heard that you are interested in our initiative. If you don’t want any further emails, please tell me immediately and I will remove you from the list. (I sympathize- I recently cleaned up my regular emails and ended up unsubscribing from over 50!).
Having said that, welcome to this most interesting endeavor. I’m told by our stalwart secretary and all-around workhorse, Eddie Figas, that this is unique in Allegheny County. So we are really excited to get it going, and do it right. Our next meeting is this Thursday at 4 pm (we will be meeting 1st Thursday of each month at that time). The meeting starts at the Millvale Borough Building ON OUR BICYCLES, then we’ll immediately proceed to take a bike tour of Millvale to scout the best bike routes. Please note: since we will be in rush-hour traffic, this is NOT for the bicycling-faint-of-heart. I won’t absolutely say we are riding regardless of the weather, but, hey, we are no wimps in Mville. Check our blog MBBPC.wordpress.com for updates (I just started it today, so it’s still rough). Our handsome and popular (not to mention, young) vice-chair Tom Walker made the excellent suggestion that we keep meetings to one hour if possible; this one is very likely to go over that limit, but we will strive to do so in the future.
Please let folks know about us. We also need more alternate members. regards, **Joe**
I would enjoy going but I’ll still be at work at 4pm. Why so early?
I would echo Ted’s sentiments. Perhaps the folks starting this committee are retired. Stu, if you get there, please give us a report.
My chances of getting there are near zero. I rarely get out of work before 5:30, let alone the 3:30 it would take to get to Millvale by 4.
This was emailed to the group after the meeting last night.
We didn’t have a quorum, so we couldn’t conduct business.
However we took a bike ride from the Borough bldg. to Shop n Save, then back to the Borough bldg. to regroup. Then we traveled along North Ave. to Grant Ave., turned left and rode all the way to the E. Ohio St./Grant Ave. intersection. We turned sharp right onto Stanton Ave, then right onto Sheridan St., and left onto Farragut St. The point was to look at the “paper alley” at the end of Farragut which was mentioned in the April meeting.
The committee unanimously agreed the best route is the obvious, straight shot, described here as outbound: Grant Ave. to North Ave, then Evergreen Rd. to Rita’s. We were unsure of the Millvale border, but a nice connection is to continue to the Shop n Save along Evergreen Rd.
Dino Angelici who is associated with Economic Development South gave us a report on attempts to develop Brownsville Rd. for safer biking. He also described attempts to develop the “Seldom Seen” greenway that could connect into the Wabash Tunnel.
The next meeting is at 4PM on Thursday, June 12, at the Millvale Borough Building, 501 Lincoln Ave. Millvale, PA 15209.
Joseph F. McLaughlin
Chair, Millvale Borough Bicycle and Pedestrian Committee (MBBPC)
Just realized this was yesterday, not next week. Still, sent message asking why so early–I too would be interested, but can’t make any 4pm meetup.
I got there about 4:40 pm and found the group riding on Grant Street. Dan Yablonsky (sp?) was also there, representing Bike Pittsburgh in some capacity. There was an Asian fellow on the committee who is a friend of Ted Zellers.
I did ask about the 4 pm start time. Apparently, there are officials with the borough who normally attend and have subsequent meetings at 5 and 6 pm. They are the ones who have set the time for the meeting.
It seems like a good group. They have already secured 3 grants, two small ones (amounts not disclosed) and another in the neighborhood of $45K.
The group has had talks with neighboring Shaler Township about a route along Friday, Parker, and Seavey Roads. Shaler has been positive but is concerned about liability from condoning bicycling/pedestrian usage of roads that they feel are not totally safe due to terrain, curves, traffic, and poor sight-lines.
Dino Angelici is not with EDS, he is part of a group organized by EDS that is trying to improve and advocate for better bike/ped facilities in the South Hills.
Future meetings will be held on the 2nd Thursday of each month. Joe McLauglin will approach borough officials about a possible time change.
It would have been nice to be part of the conversation. Since I travel through Millvale > 5x/week, I think I can speak with some knowledge. IMHO, it’s all about speed limits and the enforcement thereof. It would be nice if a couple of streets could be repaved, and there are quite a few wheel eating drain grates. Most of the time, though, I can roll through town without trouble.
Stu, I mentioned your name, that you ride through there every day, and the difficulty you would have getting there by 4 pm. Joe said he would bring up the meeting time issue with the borough officials.
any input is definitely welcome and duly noted! stu, it looks like you are on the email list with joe, too. since he is the committee chair please let him know any input that you have to share so he can bring that to the next meeting.
next one is thurs, june 12 from 4pm to 5pm.
committee does have 2 retirees, but the other 5 people (like me) are fully employed. two of the committee members work for non profit organizations like the Millvale Borough Development Corporation and the Allegheny River Towns Enterprise Zone. they (as well the 2 borough officials on the committee) have standing meetings most nights of the week so we would be excluding 4 of our 7 committee members if we move the meetings later in the evening. it is unfortunate that we cannot find a meeting time that works for everyone. we have worked for about a year and a half just to get some initial funding and get ourselves up and running.
hopefully through staying in touch and providing input on minutes, and the blog posts we can capture as much input and ideas as possible as we move forward.
stu, we certainly want to hear from you, as a bike commuter who rides through on a regular basis. just as a heads up, you will want to note that there is an expected start date of june 9 for north avenue to be replaced from frederick street to the intersection with evergreen avenue at hardees’. this will cause some detours while the road is replaced.
thanks for your interest and input in this project, and do hope that some of you will be able to get your employer to let you come in early one morning so you can join the 4pm meetings!
They have started the paving process! Any chance we can get some bicycle markings?
Top! meeting tonight, 6pm. Any details would be in their blog.
During the meeting last night, they talked about installing a bike lane along some of the wider portions of North Avenue. I pointed out that this would not be a good idea. There isn’t enough space, in terms of width, and you reallyreallyreally don’t want to install a door-zone bike lane. Besides, even where it is very wide, it doesn’t last, so there’s no point in having a lane for so short a piece of street.
The easiest, simplest, and safest solution is intermixed traffic, and drivers are just going to have to get used to it.
Sharrows could be appropriate in sections here? Maybe coordinating with bike-pgh to identify the best routes to add to their online bike route map?
Sharrows on North Avenue would be awesome! Yes, please. Few people understand why I take the lane, and I’m still being yelled at to get out of the way. It’s upsetting. Would sharrows here be a PennDOT thing? What can I do to help? I wish I could have made it to the meeting, but I had to let my dog out!
Dan Y from Bike-Pgh was there and actively participated in the conversation about sharrows.
Separately, there were a couple of side discussions to the effect of “So how do we inform the public about what we’re doing? We want to be as transparent about this as possible.” I think those exact words were spoken once, and something like it came up three or four times.
“Separately, there were a couple of side discussions to the effect of “So how do we inform the public about what we’re doing? We want to be as transparent about this as possible.” I think those exact words were spoken once, and something like it came up three or four times.”
Do they by any chance have a bicycle police officer? This seems like the kind of small, close contact community where one person in an official position, who also could happen to be an advocate, interacting with one person at a time, could REALLY have an impact.
They would also save shitloads of money on law enforcement overhead.
Transparency via public meeting(s) and information. Develop a plan, make presentations. Invite the community and other interested parties. Brief articles in local papers, message boards, etc.
Thanks to folks for the interest in the Millvale Borough Bike/Pedestrian Committee (MBBPC). Our June 26 meeting was very productive- as folks have requested, we now have a (hopefully permanent) meeting time on the 4th Thursday at 6. See the blog for more info http://www.mbbpc.wordpress.com regards, **Joe**
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