Have you made your 311 complaint this week?
The passing-the-buck story gets better! Starting at the beginning:
In 2010, regarding broken glass on the 40th St Bridge sidewalk, I complained to Pittsburgh 311, the city told me “that’s a county issue”, the county told me “that’s a state issue”, and 3 months later, PennDOT sent me a note saying “cleaned area”. For future reference, I wrote myself a note “40th St Bridge problems – contact PennDOT”.
A week ago I filed a “concern” with PennDOT about more glass on the sidewalk and today I got a phone call. The upshot is “that’s a city issue”! Around and around we go, and where we stop, nobody knows! Hah! PennDOT told me they have an agreement with the city of Pittsburgh that the city does sidewalk and street-cleaning, while PennDOT does structural repairs, similar to other Pittsburgh bridges.
You might think that there would be a map or database somewhere that tells citizens who maintains what, but apparently not. Do they keep it written on post-it notes? You can find a map of which roads in Allegheny County are state at http://www.penndot.gov/ProjectAndPrograms/Planning/Maps/Pages/County-Type-10.aspx. State roads are shown in red. But there’s no indication on this map of maintenance agreements with the city.
PennDOT told me they forwarded my request to the city, and I submitted it to 311, also, asking them to sweep the upstream sidewalk 4 times a year.
About the railroad tracks to nowhere on River Avenue.
— PGH311 (@Pgh311) January 10, 2017
Also, Jonathon’s comment:
— Bison bison (@infinitebuffalo) January 10, 2017
and not only are the railroad tracks hazardous along River Ave and Railroad street in the strip just for being in the lane of travel, but the River Avenue ones have metal sections sticking up about 4-6″ from the pavement which are no big deal for cars but very hazardous for bikes.
Wondering if the city can’t touch them because they are rails. Wondering if they are still officially owned by a railroad. It was obviously a short spur to whatever was there a long time ago.
I 311ed this a long time ago and city never responded. Thanks for doing this again.
Honestly, if that’s the reason the city can’t do it, then I’ll pay for a couple bags if cement, drag a wheelbarrow and a couple of traffic cones down there and fill the damned things myself. I might even think to bring a roll of Saran Wrap and some duct tape to keep the spatter down until it cures.
I reported, request #126713:
Fence that was just put up around the Science Center construction site has narrowed the bike & pedestrian trail unacceptably. I understand that CSC told people to inform 311 if the contractors ever pinched the trail excessively. That has already happened, unfortunately. The attached photo [from Jerry Green] is from 1/21. That trail is not that wide to begin with. We need the full width. Get all fence bases and sandbags off the trail, please. This trail must stay open for the entire construction period.
Paul, can you also email this to the nice guy who answers these messages at the CSC? I’m not sure my email (that I posted in another thread) conveyed the issue with the “feet” of the fence. Even if the feet were off the sidewalk, it’ll still be very hard to pass or have more than 1 person using that part of the trail at the same time given that one side is downhill and the other side in the fence.
Jerry Green spoke with the contractors, and I saw pictures that showed that the fence was moved off that sidewalk. I encouraged Jerry to post a summary here on bikepgh’s messageboard.
About glass on the 40th St Bridge sidewalk, in early January PennDOT told me they forwarded my request (sweep the upstream sidewalk 4 times a year) to the city. I submitted it to 311, also. http://www.bikepgh.org/message-board/topic/have-you-made-your-311-complaint-this-week/page/20/#post-336717
Today I got an email from 311 saying “Request printed and given to supervisor 1/27/2017.”
Good to know.
Honestly with the rate of broken glass accumulation over the winter (with less peds traffic on the bridge) they prob need to sweep 4x a month.
There must be a rip in the space time continuum there as the laws of gravity and friction don’t seem to apply on that sidewalk. I mean, all those dropped bottles.
Maybe someone could get a (perhaps the last ever) NSF grant to study it.
- This reply was modified 3 years, 4 months ago by Eric.
— PGH311 (@Pgh311) February 3, 2017
Particularly relevant, since this is precisely where I got snarled at by a motorist for being in the lane — and going 23 in a 15 zone. That was the first I noticed that the 15 sign was missing. (Totally irrelevant that the motorist in question was Councilwoman Darlene Harris. I have video and a plate #.)
Darlene is so bike friendly. Can’t imagine that.
Glass and rocks in climbing lane of one wild place. Rocks toward the bottom, glass after the turn by the zoo mural. Will 311
Stu said “this is precisely where I got snarled at by a motorist for being in the lane — and going 23 in a 15 zone”. You were going 23 or she (Darlene) was?
I was. She came up behind me and was upset that I was there. This was mere yards before the dogleg turn to cross 279. The video is not public.
Regarding my 311 for broken glass on the 40th St Bridge (http://www.bikepgh.org/message-board/topic/have-you-made-your-311-complaint-this-week/page/20/#post-337739), in which I asked them to sweep the sidewalk four times a year, I got a response on 2/8: “The 2nd Division does not sweep bridge. G. McCain, Supervisor” and they closed the request. 2nd division of the Division of Public Works (map) includes Lawrenceville.
That’s a pretty unsatisfactory answer, because I don’t know if it means (1) no, we’re capable of doing it but refuse to, or (2) that’s somebody else’s job, or (3) nobody has swept or ever will sweep that bridge, or (4) we don’t sweep, but we could do a sponge treatment with concrete pore rejuvenation, if you’d like.
I read this more as #2, the “city of pittsburgh doesn’t take care of that bridge sidewalk” crap. you know, it’s penndot’s job.
I think I remember someone posted in the past about how Lawrenceville United has gotten involved in this issue before (penndot vs. city pass the buck). Maybe you could reach out to them, tell them what you’ve done, and see if they can firmly plant their foot in the rear of someone in the city to take charge.
- This reply was modified 3 years, 3 months ago by Eric.
In response to maintenance requests, DPW has variously claimed 40th is PennDOT & ACDPW responsibility.
And that’s just in the last two months.
@DaniErdosne 4OTH Street Bridge is maintained by PennDot per Mike in Engr and Construction. D. Albring, PW Inspector
— PGH311 (@Pgh311) December 12, 2016
@DaniErdosne This bridge is maintained by the County. G. McCain, Supervisor
— PGH311 (@Pgh311) January 10, 2017
PennDOT has always claimed they have a contract that makes the maintenance of sidewalks the City’s responsibility. I’m not sure what the County thinks.
Thanks. There was an entry bollard down around there that I saw and was going to report but forgot the location. Maybe around the conv center and hotel.
The downed bollard, now that I see the combo of Twitter and message board software didn’t display it.
Public Works is pothole blitzing Wednesday and Thursday. Get those 311 requests in! (cross posting to 2017 road conditions)
Several of us have filed 311 requests and/or spoken with Corey O’Connor (city councilperson) requesting a port-a-john at Haysglen St under the Glenwood Bridge, both for regular GAP trail users and for the surge of bald-eagle-watchers we get each Spring. That strip of land happens to be in Pittsburgh.
But we’ve gotten responses from Pittsburgh 311 like this: “Unfortunately we have no room in the budget for extra Port-a-johns, and all requests for new ones are denied.”
What about pit/compost toilet bathrooms like they have along the gap? And trail group funding to build it?
Trail group funding? Do you use the trail? Would you use a toilet? Are you a member of the Steel Valley Trail Council? Have you made a donation lately-for a toilet–not in it.
Building our own is much more costly; tens of thousands of dollars; also there would probably be zoning and engineering issues/costs at that location–maybe not. And then there are the maintenance costs: cleaning, stocking; treating; vandalism; etc.; and they have a limited lifetime, depending upon the size of the pit and its design–they need to be cleaned out–that’s the fun part.
Locally Port-o-Pottys rental is about $1500/year. Period. Includes everything–we just supply the dough and the crap.
[The building below Kennywood is a municipal water treatment plant–we thought that would be an ideal place to have a toilet–they didn’t]
I’m hopeful the City will take care of this (we’re still working with them)–else the SVTC will be tired of this crap and quite pissed off…and will probably find the paper to clean the mess up–last year it was partially funded by donations.
Got it. I didn’t know that the trail council donates for the portapotties too.
I do wish there was more infrastructure along the trails (more bathrooms, water fountains) but as has been pointed out on the threads before compared to other states PA funds the trails very poorly, meaning local gov’t and private groups need to pick up the slack.
To be clear: The Pottys along the Three Rivers Heritage Trail are paid by and put there by the City of Pittsburgh–little or no input from FriendsOfTheRiverfront (as far as I know)–which was discovered when we asked if they would, at least split the cost with SVTC. The Steel Valley Trail which starts at Sandcastle and goes to McKeesport along the GAP; then along the road through Glassport to Clairton (and the terminus of the Montour Trail), has been FULLY responsible for the pottys there (at Haysglen and near Kennywood as an amenity for trail users; as our budget and coffers allow. Since Haysglen is in the City of Pgh, the hope was the City would take care of it.
Funding can come from various sources–memberships, volunteers, local, state, federal, parent trail organizations, private people and organizations, etc… And often requires filling out involved grant applications–If anyone has such experience, please contact the SVTC–maybe we can get a nice bathroom and some water fountains…
I requested a bike rack in front of La Gourmandine in Hazelwood using the request form at https://docs.google.com/forms/d/170tbA_m0rFtQIgJCHeRGILFxkFUtDv6H5tcJXqaPeM0/viewform. I wrote: I’ve been locking my bike to the small trees in front of the bakery, but too much locking there could damage the trees. There are bike racks across the street at the library, but Second Ave is busy and dangerous to cross. This bakery is new and getting quite a bit of business. It’s attracting more cyclists to Second Ave (me, for one!).
Paul, you should contact La Grourmandine as well. I’m pretty sure they have a 3 rivers rack in front of their lawrenceville location too. They may need to put in a request to the city for one to actually get it installed. (I could be totally wrong on this though).
Love the Almond Croissants! Good stuff.
- This reply was modified 3 years ago by Benzo.
Can confirm, LG Lawrenceville does have a 3R rack: https://goo.gl/maps/qPLk8Eoqgqw
It’s my understanding that the City is somewhere between severely backed up and not moving on bike rack requests at the moment, so in fact the most expedient solution may be for the bakery to install a rack themselves…. :-/
- This reply was modified 3 years ago by buffalo buffalo.
Yes, though they probably need to fill out some paperwork to get it offically approved for sidewalk use, otherwise the city could (at the behest of some bike complainers) remove the ‘illegal’ and ‘unsanctioned’ bike racks.
I bet good info about sidewalk bicycle rack permits can be found here:
I emailed the Gourmandine people and the manager sent me a picture of the four new staple bike racks across Tipton St from their business. This is half a block away from their front door. I replied, suggesting they put at least one rack close to their front door.
I forgot a few weeks ago to 311 one wild place downhill bike lanes. Were all covered in debris, especially the really sloped part right before Butler st.
If anyone is that way can you check it out and 311 it if is still “needs cleaned.”
@edronline – not sure how to check status for twitter or phone calls, but if you submitted your request via the web form with an account, you can login and click requests and you can see all your past requests entered and their status.
This one nearly got me on my Vespa this weekend, but definitely would be a bad time for a bicycle too, it’s narrow and very deep.
Date 5/22/2017 1:22 PM
Address 5520 CENTRE AVE, Pittsburgh
Comments There is a pothole on Centre Ave eastbound between Graham and Negley, just before the Giant Eagle entrance. It’s right in the middle of the lane, very deep, and just about the perfect size to send a motorcyclist or bicyclist over the bars – extremely dangerous.
Date/Time 5/22/2017 1:22 PM
According to http://apps.pittsburghpa.gov/dpw/Planned_2017_Streets.pdf, Centre is only to be repaved between Craig and Aiken.
When you lock up, it’s a good idea to make sure whatever you’re locking to is itself locked down. Like, say, these racks in Market Square…
— Bison bison (@infinitebuffalo) May 26, 2017
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