Brighton Heights to the Waterfront

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mattre
Participant
#

We’re moving back to Pittsburgh from Indiana, PA next month, and my wife is considering a job at Lowes at the Waterfront. I’ve never biked out that way, and I have no idea about routes.

Google maps suggests the Jail Trail, then up and over Greenfield to Beechwood to Browns Hill and across the Homestead Grays Bridge. Is there a better way that avoids climbing over Greenfield? I know I’ve read threads here about alternate ways past Sandcastle…would any of those be useful on a regular basis?


Swalfoort
Participant
#

Great news, Mattre!

You’ll find lots of recommendations here, as you know. Many will include small sections of travel on “illegal” rights of way (rail ballast, etc), a small hurdle (stairs down from a bridge) or a fairly significant hill (Browns Hill Road).

Can you give an idea as to which circumstance your wife might be most comfortable with?


jonawebb
Participant
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You might consider riding up through Hazelwood and then Glen Hazel using Johnston Ave, then across the Homestead Grays bridge. This doesn’t avoid all hills, of course, but it is entirely on-road and avoids the long climb up Greenfield Ave.

Also I don’t think there’s a lot of traffic until you get to Browns Hill Road.


reddan
Keymaster
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My go-to route is Jail Trail->Second Ave->885->Glenwood Bridge->837->7th Ave->Amity St. Completely legal, although the 837/885/Glass Run/Glenwood Bridge interchange can get sketchy at times.


mattre
Participant
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I like the Glenwood Bridge route…how long does it take from Brighton Heights?

Johnston Ave looks pretty good, too, though I haven’t checked out the hills yet.

@Swalfoot: she’s able to get comfortable with pretty much anything, as long as it’s not unnecessarily illegal or dangerous. She’s in good shape (completed multiple marathons plus an ultra in the last 12 months) so major hills are OK as long as they are major time savers. The main goal here is the fastest possible commute (within reason), not necessarily the easiest.


reddan
Keymaster
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@mattre: IIRC, it’s about 15 miles, mostly flat or downhill.


mattre
Participant
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Hmmm…that’s still at least an hour in good conditions.

The job she’s looking at starts at 6am each day, so I’m looking at multi-modal options. The first 57 of the day leaves downtown and stops in front of Lowes with seven minutes to spare. I haven’t ridden the buses with any regularity for about three years…can anyone comment on the reliability especially early in the morning?


StuInMcCandless
Participant
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Do some experimentation. My guess is that she could make good use of a combo bike-bus commute. My guess is that she can beat the bus into town by bike, especially if she has a razor-thin margin of getting one bus that gets her to work on time. OTOH, it would be handy to have that bus option going home in the afternoon, especially the town-to-home leg.

Early morning, buses are least likely to be thrown off schedule. By 7a, the mix of school buses (soon not to be an issue for a couple months), commuter traffic, and weather conditions, starts to mess stuff up, but at 6, things still work pretty well.


Swalfoort
Participant
#

@Mattre- I had sent you a PM in which I mentioned a bike/bus option.

The eastern terminus of the East Busway is just about a mile from the Waterfront Complex. She could ride downtown, grab the East Busway Long buses (G1? P1?)which run pretty frequently. Then from the Swissvale stop is it a mile downhill to the Rankin Bridge.

She could save the longer ride for the commute home.


StuInMcCandless
Participant
#

P1 is the one you want.

I will also mention the P7 McKeesport Flyer, then bike from the first stop after crossing the Rankin Bridge. It only runs every 30 minutes, but might even be a faster ride than the P1.

I do not know about riding conditions on the various Mon River crossings, but the P7 gets you & the bike across the river, too.

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