Hazelwood Trail: Input Session 10/16/2014

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Swalfoort
Participant
#

From Friends of the Riverfront:

HAZELWOOD
The Hazelwood segment of the Three Rivers Heritage Trail will be closed and inaccessible as initial redevelopment work is completed on the ALMONO site. Visit almono.org for more information.
A public meeting will be held on Thursday, October 16, at 6pm at the Car Barn in Hazelwood (5340 Second Ave. Pgh. PA 15207) to discuss the plans and progress of this project, including trail connections.


Benzo
Participant
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I’m assuming it’s already a great place to talk about connections to the eliza furnace trail.

Is this a good forum to discuss possible trail connections to the duck hollow trail now that this is a significant challenge?


Swalfoort
Participant
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@ben, I can’t think of a BETTER time. Whether it is a good time or not is not something I can really answer.

But, I would raise the question in a forum like this, certainly!


byogman
Member
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It absolutely kills me, but I can’t make this due to the tail end of sukkot. Yarg!


Brent
Participant
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I checked with Tom Baxter of Friends of the Riverfront, and he confirmed to me that the meeting location has been moved to the Firefighter’s Union Hall at 120 Flowers Ave in Hazelwood. Their website is now listing the new location.


Swalfoort
Participant
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*bump*

This is tonight, folks.

6:00 p.m.

New location:

Firefighters Union Hall
120 Flowers Avenue
Hazelwood

I can’t make it, but if I did, I would hope to hear lots of discussion about:

connection from Hot Metal Bridge/EFT to AND THROUGH Almono site to Duck Hollow Trail

connection from Almono site to Glenwood Bridge

connection from Hazelwood community across railroad tracks to Almono site


buffalo buffalo
Participant
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Glad I checked, as I hadn’t gotten the word the location had changed. I intend to be there.

The actual reason I was checking: Does anyone know the status of Second Avenue itself, as opposed to Irvine/885 or the Hazelwood Trail? I’ll be coming down from Oakland, and Google Maps’s directions say to take Second between Saline/Greenfield and Hazelwood Ave, which I thought was closed.


buffalo buffalo
Participant
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Second _is_ closed. Another GMaps fail…


Ahlir
Participant
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Irvine is a street in dire need of a bollarded bike lane.


buffalo buffalo
Participant
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The city still owns part of the trailhead parking lot, and the southern bridge over lower Greenfield (The one that does not have tracks on it). Almono has a plan and design for a ramp from said bridge to “Old Second Ave”. Apparently the only thing standing between us and an Eliza Furnace Trail extension to Hazelwood Ave is CSX, which has to approve the plan and has been sitting on it for ~18 months…

(The current trail is closed because it traverses the active construction section of the site; they anticipate taking bids for infrastructure by year’s end, with work starting late winter or early spring and continuing ~18 months. This connection would be off to the side and thus could be fenced or barriered and thus could open sooner…if csx would get off their collective tuchus.)


Benzo
Participant
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I couldn’t make it. Any discussion of connection to duck hollow?


buffalo buffalo
Participant
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A little bit, although it’s largely out of scope for this project, which only really goes as far as Hazelwood Ave. (it came up a couple of times, but they mostly redirected to Friends of the Riverfront.)


Benzo
Participant
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Ok, well at least we know who’s working on it. I know FOR has a lot of stuff on their plate now with the mon wharf switchback and connector to the point to deal with.


paulheckbert
Keymaster
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My notes from Thursday’s meeting:

The principal players:
* ALMONO, a nonprofit partnership of several large Pittsburgh foundations for the redevelopment of this part of Hazelwood; also the name for the site. The foundations are funding most of the redevelopment.
* Regional Industrial Development Corporation of Southwestern Pennsylvania (RIDC), a nonprofit, is supervising redevelopment of the site.
* Hazelwood Initiative, liaison between the community of Hazelwood and the ALMONO project.

Much of the stormwater site prep is done. RIDC will put road construction out to bid in 6 weeks, and construction of the road will be done in 2015 or 2016. The main road will have parallel, separated bidirectional bike trail for most of its length. The road will connect to 2nd Ave close to the Hot Metal Bridge and will run between 2nd Ave and the river for the length of the ALMONO property. Existing streets will be extended to integrate the new development into existing Hazelwood neighborhoods as much as possible. Hazelwood Ave, in particular, will be so extended. Sketches: http://almono.org/

Stu Strickland spoke up at the meeting and asked “when and how will you connect to the Duck Hollow Trail?”. RIDC’s answer was basically “we’re interested, but that’s outside our land; and that’s not part of ALMONO Phase 1; talk to Friends of the Riverfront (FOR)”.

RIDC has a proposal to CSX to build a ramp from the Eliza Furnace parking lot headed southeast, parallel to the railroad tracks, down to 2nd Ave (which will be like a service road parallel to the main road-to-be-constructed). If CSX approves this, it could be a second bike route through Hazelwood/ALMONO, and a very direct one. CSX has been slow to respond. It sounds like this is on RIDCs “desirable but not essential” list. FOR supports it.

RIDC is figuring that the 1,300 housing units planned for ALMONO will be popular with people working/studying in Oakland, so there was talk (speculative at this point) of shuttle buses between Hazelwood and Oakland, perhaps directly up Junction Hollow, perhaps autonomously-driven!

Several Hazelwood residents asked “will Hazelwood finally get a supermarket?” to which the answer was “we’re expecting that all the new residents will attract a market, but we’re not going to force that”. Also “will a portion of the construction jobs be set aside for locals?” to which the answer was “there is no target percentage”.

RIDC thinks that a total reconstruction of the Second-Saline-Greenfield-Irvine intersection will probably be necessary, in some future phase, a number of years from now, because the increased traffic resulting from the ALMONO development will overwhelm the current intersection. If there is a massive reconstruction of that intersection, then the main road discussed above could serve as a detour, during that construction. Stu and I suggested some ideas for eliminating the horrible “chute”.

RIDC thinks that the Mon Fayette Expressway (MFE) is dead in the Hazelwood area, both because MFE’s environmental clearance expired, and because there would be too much opposition in Hazelwood. They suspect that the MFE fork to Monroeville might happen, however.

Jim Richter (Hazelwood Initiative) told me that he’s working with a Pitt engineering professor on ideas for a design for a cantilevered trail along the bank of the Mon, skirting the railyard, near the Glenwood Bridge. I’ve inquired so I can learn more about this idea and provide input, since I’ve been thinking about connections to the Glenwood Bridge and to Carrie Furnace trail for several years, and the Steel Valley Trail Council, of which I’m a member, views it as a critical connection in the trail network.


Benzo
Participant
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Thanks for the very detailed notes!


StuInMcCandless
Participant
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My Duck Hollow question was based on @swalfoort‘s question on the same topic, from an earlier thread on this board.

My Saline-Greenfield-Irvine-Second fustercluck solution was to show Daniel C. Sharek, PE, the RIDC guy, the photo of the suspended circle in the pampered-europeans thread. In essence, build that first, then you can build anything else without having to deal with cyclists.


Eric
Member
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Dumb question but where is the Hazelwood trail? 2nd avenue deadends into that gate right past the railroad overpass leading to Greenfield Avenue. I’ve never poked around enough over there to find it. Is it off of Hazelwood ave?


buffalo buffalo
Participant
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Hazelwood Trail runs along the river from the Hot Metal Bridge to about halfway between that fence and Hazelwood Ave, then turns and runs into Old Second (though I don’t think that part will make it through construction …)


Benzo
Participant
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I would also love to see the former sylvan ave be resurrected as a multi use path to connect the two sections of sylvan ave to connect the intersection of sylvan ave, greenfield ave, and frazier st (bridge) to the intersection of sylvan ave and home rule st (which then connects to hazelwood ave).

This is relatively flat, mostly city owned, and maybe just needs to be cleared of knotweed and put down a layer of crushed limestone. Looks like there used to be a road there (at least on the city zoning maps there is).

I tried to trailblaze through here before, but it was a bit too muddy and overgrown to traverse.


erok
Keymaster
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@benzo

Ok, well at least we know who’s working on it. I know FOR has a lot of stuff on their plate now with the mon wharf switchback and connector to the point to deal with.

For what it’s worth, Riverlife is spearheading the Mon Wharf switchback and connector to the point, not FOR


Benzo
Participant
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Thanks for clarification erok.


AtLeastMyKidsLoveMe
Participant
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Not sure if this is the right place for this, but the following was in a media release from PADOT announcing several projects receiving funding:

“Almono, LP, Pittsburgh, Allegheny County — $5 million for the construction of necessary on-site transportation infrastructure, site utility infrastructure (water, sanitary sewer, storm sewer), off-site transportation improvements, public open space, general site preparation, and site remediation.”


Swalfoort
Participant
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@paul – do you have contact information for Jim Richter? If so, could you PM me with his email address? Thanks.


buffalo buffalo
Participant
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Just received this email:

PLEASE JOIN US FOR AN UPDATE

February 24

Fire Union Hall, 120 Flowers Avenue
6:00p.m. food, 6:30p.m. meeting

Please come to learn more and to provide feedback on this important project.

Topics will include:
– Open space designs
– Phase 1 buildings
– Site sustainability goals
– Transportation update
– Timeline of the work

Questions? Please contact Sarah Stroney at (412) 315-6443.

This is unfortunately the same night as the Ohio River Greenway meeting in Old Economy and the Bloomfield Livable Streets meeting, but hopefully more than a few people can make it that night anyway.

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