Local news stories and LTE 2017
Don’t traffic lights defeat the purpose of a roundabout? What about Allegheny Center with its five traffic lights all with “No turn on red” signs in all (permissible) directions?
It is regarding earlier posts about roundabouts in this thread.
It’s nice to see a positive story in the Trib:
Greensburg man, 67, to cycle across U.S., help city’s homeless
I’ve encountered the “Rowdy Riders” on the river trails a few times over the years; nice people.
Pedal powered time machine coming to pgh
Planning Commission this week greenlit the new apartment buildings at Station Square (between Smithfield Bridge and the T bridge), including 340-space underground parking garage: https://www.post-gazette.com/local/city/2017/04/04/Station-Square-apartments-Pittsburgh-development-One-Chatham-Center-Downtown/stories/201704050094?pgpageversion=pgevoke
There also will be several direct connections to the riverfront trail, which will be rebuilt as part of the project. … During the construction, the existing trail will be closed, with users rerouted through the east side of Station Square.
Not entirely certain how they’re going to reroute the trail from the east side of Station Square to the east side of Station Square (or did they mean from the northern border of the east side of Station Square into the middle of the construction zone?). Anyway, brace yourselves; assuming the rest of the permitting goes forward as anticipated, it’s only a couple months away:
[Project developer] High Street Residential hopes to get started this summer on the project, which will take 18 months to complete.
Maybe they meant that there would be rerouting (details TBD) within the project area, which the article described earlier as “the east side of Station Square”.
This is ironic. Pittsburgh drivers rank as the worst, most distracted drivers in the country, as measured by, guess what, a smartphone app.
David Smith, the cyclist in Hempfield who was jailed for, among other things, obstructing traffic while riding his bicycle, has promised to stay off the highway if he’s allowed out of jail on bail: http://triblive.com/local/westmoreland/12231850-74/hempfield-bicyclist-wants-out-of-jail-permission-to-pedal
Sharpsburg PD will revive its bicycle patrol, last seen approximately 2001:
“It’s a flat, small town where you can get places quickly,” [Officer Brett] Carb said. “It’s much easier to talk to people and say hello when you don’t have to roll the car window down and stop traffic. It gets us face-to-face with the community.”
“I think it’s a great way to get their faces out there and develop relationships with kids especially,” Councilwoman Brittany Reno said. “This is a very pedestrian-heavy community and I think it’s a fabulous idea.”
About Pittsburghers supposedly being tied for worst drivers: I’m suspicious of the study. Rating driver behavior by smartphone app seems inherently flawed, to me. Most of us would laugh at a proposal to replace the human examiner in a driver road test with a smartphone app, so why should we trust a study of driver safety done with a smartphone app? The app has no way of knowing if you came within inches of hitting a pedestrian, if you clipped the mirror off a parked car, if you ran over somebody’s dog, or if you drove too fast for conditions.
There’s an lte in the pg pro mfe. That’s a lot of acronyms. I can’t grab it because I’m out of monthly articles but the jist is that people that live there suffer with the traffic getting downtown.
Though dumping them onto the parkway east pre sq hill tunnel will just add to the tunnel backup on the parkway east every morning and evening. So I bet it’ll be a wash, time wise.
@edronline: depending on your system/browser combination, you should be able to right-click on the link and ‘open in private/incognito window’ to evade the PG’s monthly-article limit. Haven’t tried in the vast array of Android browsers (and I don’t have an iphone at all), but it definitely works in Chrome on Android.
Not sure if this is the referenced LTE, but I found “A Mon-Fayette extension would be a relief to many drivers” (http://www.post-gazette.com/opinion/letters/2017/04/26/A-Mon-Fayette-extension-would-be-a-relief-to-many-drivers/stories/201704240068?pgpageversion=pgevoke):
My argument for it is to provide missing and badly needed highway access between Pittsburgh’s eastern and southern suburban communities.
We all know that Pittsburgh’s three rivers pose their own notorious difficulties getting around Pittsburgh. Yes, we have plenty of bridges in the area, but few are highway crossings outside of the Downtown area. For example, the east and the north are efficiently connected by the Pennsylvania Turnpike (which crosses the Allegheny). The north, west and south are well connected by I-79 (which crosses the Ohio).
But there is no equivalent highway crossing the Mon. Other than the Fort Pitt Bridge, in the middle of Downtown congestion, the next highway crossing upstream isn’t until I-70 way out near Belle Vernon!
It’s not so much that people suffer with the traffic downtown but traffic in the east and southeast hills: “some trips between the Pittsburgh area’s eastern and southern communities can take as long as an hour of crawling through urban congestion. A new highway crossing the Mon would relieve a lot of headaches for these drivers.” Though, of course, there’s no estimate of how many such drivers there actually are or would be. (Has anyone actually made a verifiable study of that number…?)
Trib summarizes bike trails around the area and includes penn Ave bike lane.
No troll comments on the article, yet.
Funding for the brt and Trump’s proposed budget.
The Worst of the Worst Pittsburgh ties with one other city for having the worst drivers in the nation. – See more at: http://www.pittsburghmagazine.com/Best-of-the-Burgh-Blogs/The-412/April-2017/New-Study-Pittsburgh-Drivers-are-The-Worst-of-the-Worst/?utm_source=iContactPro&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Grapevine&utm_content=Thursday+April+27&vsmaid=3853&vcid=19919#sthash.cRYfV3CI.dpuf
The ever-so-scientific poll on the Post-Gazette website today is:
“Do you consider verbal altercation from a drive toward a cyclist to be harassment?”
And the ever so scientific polling #s right now have Yes at 40% and No at 43%.
What makes this even more scientific is that right above the “poll” it says “advertisement” and the 2nd question is an opinion question about which health insurer in town is the best. Which is the real reason why they’re asking the question, because some firm is paying the P-G to run the question.
Re Darlene Harris and PG advertisement/poll, the version of the question I saw was “Were you surprised by the video showing City Councilor Darlene Harris in a verbal altercation with a cyclist?” What a useless way to ask the question! “No, I wasn’t surprised, because I heard about it beforehand”, or “Yes, very surprised, because I thought she drove a sedan!”.
They are just click bait so they can ask other questions because they’re being paid (probably a tiny amount) by some agency to collect information.
Brian O’Neill on Pittsburgh drivers, bikers, and walkers.
One of the best things is how @stuinmccandless has managed to hold her to account for her bike hatred.
It isn’t that she hates cyclists. She just wants them in bike lanes that have had traffic studies.
Yeah, she wants us to be safe. That’s why she was driving aggressively behind Stu.
O’Neill wrote a good article. My only quibble is that he assumes that when bikers get behind the wheel they turn into the kind of driver that he’s chiding.
That’s not true in my case. I find myself doing stuff like sticking to the speed limit, not going through just-red lights, and even coming to a stop for pedestrians at cross-walks. At the same time I get the impression that I’m not with the (driver) program: I’ll end up with a line of cars behind me. And people around me keep going through lights, even as I’m coming to a stop. (But to be honest, I’m still working on always to come to a complete stop at all signed intersections.)
Potter’s article about Harris is pretty balanced. But in the end it’s clear that she’s not mayor material: No vision. No consistent empathy for the people she’d be representing (cf. Stu’s experience). She’s a district politician and an apparently competent one. Maybe she should stick to what she knows, the North Side.
@ahlir, I feel similarly–in fact, I’d say that since I started biking more regularly, my occasional driving has improved tremendously–but I get plenty of close or just unnecessary passes from vehicles with bike racks on the back….
Pittsburgh nixes plan for bike lanes on Fort Pitt Boulevard
Not unexpected, considering the push back from property/business owners and the impending construction of the Mon Wharf switchback.
I still think these bike lanes, if they ever get put in, would go better on Boulevard of the Allies, but that seems unlikely given the role that road has as the Parkway detour. Putting them in First Avenue, a glorified back alley, would essentially say “You’re not welcome on our main roads”.
File under: whoa!
The first American-born winner of the Giro d’Italia was not Andy Hampsten in 1988. It was the Boy from Pittsburgh, Giuseppe Enrici, who won it in 1924:
Putting them in First Avenue, a glorified back alley, would essentially say “You’re not welcome on our main roads”.
Unless it’s early Sunday morning (in which case I use Ft. Pitt) I typically go down 1st. Down BoA when I start to forget why I don’t go down BoA.
Having said that, 1st pretty much sucks. You need to stop at every intersection, just like an alley. Worse, the pavement is crap. Could we use the Ft. Pitt money to repave 1st? And spray on some of those nice sharrows. Maybe a block of counter-sense one-way to discourage through car traffic (not that there is much; drivers aren’t that stupid.)
Agree re riding down first, but walking down it is nicer than walking down the Blvd or ft Pitt, that’s for sure.
Monthly Steel City Roll events help cyclists get comfortable riding on Pittsburgh streets
Handcyclists Excited To Tackle Pittsburgh Marathon Course
Pittsburgh makes the top 13 list of safest cities in Bicycling Magazine (KDKA did a piece on it this morning, but I can’t find a link for it on the KDKA website)
On the Fort Pitt bike lane kerfuffle: http://www.post-gazette.com/opinion/Op-Ed/2017/05/09/Getting-balance-on-bike-lanes/stories/201705090026
PennDOT posted about their Share the Road plate on Facebook, and the trolls are out in force. (admittedly on both sides).
Is your other vehicle a bicycle? Then you might be interested in PennDOT’s specialty license plate, which promotes the…
Monroeville pondering bicycle lanes (with jonawebb quote)
PG LTE: “Many cyclists do not follow traffic rules”
@stu, there’s a personal suggestion for you in that letter.
If my machine would let me log in, I’d post this:
Are yinz done lambasting cyclists yet? Here’s the deal: I wear the cameraS — two, front and rear — and record my rides. Anyone who endangers me, I call out the license plate, as I did here. If a cyclist endangers me — rare, but possible — I can have a face-to-face discussion right there. No need for trouble. But when motorists do it, I go to the police, because my life was endangered. I get CCR numbers, if necessary, and will press charges if warranted. I will not be cowed. Your 300hp engine gives you no more right to the road than my 80-watt legs and 20-pound bike. If you endanger me, your butt and your license are on the line, backed up by video evidence that I was following the rules. If you will not follow the rules, or would purposely harm another fellow road traveler, you have no business operating a vehicle. Have I made myself clear? Just follow the rules, like I’m doing, and we’ll get along fine.
If my machine would let me log in, I’d post this:
This is — just remove all cookies that have “gazette” in their URL. And/or next time you open PPG URL — open it in a private session.
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