Where to put Bike Lanes?
Some of the general talk in these forums have said something to the effect of, “I love the new Schenley Plaza-Phipps bike lanes, but they’re not really that useful, I would have biked there anyway.” So, I ask, if there was an optimum road where a bike lane should go? (not sharrows, a lane, protected or regular)
Penn Ave, I think. Or the Wabash Tunnel + Sawmill Run Blvd if we’re allowed to fantasize.
-Becks run Rd
-West Carson St.
-One wild place
…of course none of these will ever get a protected lane. Just think of where you normally see cyclist traveling & that’s where you put the lanes (or close to it). Ideally, I think the dedicated lanes would also connect from neighborhood to neighborhood without having to deal with high speed roadways (like West Carson!).
Off the top of my head:
1. Blvd of the Allies downtown.
2. The Forbes Ave meshugga at the Birmingham Bridge (and maybe on to downtown from there).
3. Allegheny Circle.
4. East Ohio at the Interstate (and continuing down to the 16th St Bridge, to connect with the new Penn Ave lanes).
5. Birmingham Br (see below)
6. Finally, make bus lanes also bike lanes. I mean we use them anyway, but it would be nice if it were officially marked as acceptable. (No, we don’t have to do it for the uphill bits. We’re reasonable people.)
[Note: yes, of course, there are always alternative routes. But look, cars get free access to *every* street. Why begrudge us a few accomodations?]
Some recent observations:
1. Riding from 5th over the B’ham Br: there should be a stop sign at the “on ramp” rising from Forbes. This is not a highway dammit! It’s a 25mph zone! Visibility sucks, and I doubt the on-ramp even has a yield sign (though I never come up that way so I don’t know for a fact; bikes are vehicles too and, being on the main road, should have unconditional right of way). At the very least, a light with a short-delay pedestrian crossing button.
2. East Carson, the entertainment district, should be pedestrian-only on the week-ends. Think of how much more fun it would be, not to mention safer, for the average pedestrian. The local bar owners could fund a parking structure; it would soon pay for itself and continue generating revenue. And increase the value of the properties on the streets between it and Carson (more bars!). Also, Carson could use some vespasians.
3. This evening, outbound on E. Carson, I happened upon the bike lane adjoining the South Side Works development. Boy, what a relief! I have no idea if I was any safer but it sure lowered my stress level. More bike lanes back along E. Carson, at least up to where it narrows.
Too narrow, but this is fantasy. The highland park bridge and Freeport road.
West Carson Street is at the top of my list. It would be a perfect alternative that would eliminate the need to deal with the McKees Rocks Br, Rt. 65 Crossing, and the hill between the Chateau Trail and Brighton Heights. I already see a lot of cyclists pass by my house on Neville Island on a regular basis, but opening up this relatively flat route between the Rocks and Station Square would really provide a boom to both commuting and recreation from the west suburbs. Obviously, construction has to finish there first, but I am hopeful that some quality bike infrastructure will surface in that stretch before everything wraps up.
A secondary suburban link would be the stretch of 51 between the southern end of Coraopolis business district and the Montour Trail head. It would likely serve more of a recreational purpose, but would go a long way towards making a continuous GAP/Montour Loop a reality.
I wish there was a lane at least from One Wild Place down past the 62nd St Bridge. That road is huge and a total free for all. Some drivers think it is two lanes going in each direction it is so wide. I wish there was at least some sort of line showing it is one lane going each direction. It would be great to have a lane on that road. Please!
Surprised not mentioned yet, but Greenfield Avenue uphill.
Pocusset midblock between Murray and Wightman round the corner on Wightman to Melvin.
Good starting lateral links west (Carson) and south (wabash tunnel)+ have had a mention, but let’s throw in North for good measure and have a protected lane in each direction on East Street.
Some fantasy items for me: Murray avenue from the 5 way intersection up to Beacon, and Blvd of the Allies/Panther Hollow Rd/Hobart up toward squirrel hill from Magee environs.
A secondary suburban link would be the stretch of 51 between the southern end of Coraopolis business district and the Montour Trail head.
The county is planning to extend the Montour Trail into Coraopolis, via the former Montour Railroad switching yard that’s now going to be a county park. The new trail will go under the Neville Island Bridge and connect to Montour Street just to its west. I’m not sure how close they are to construction.
– Wilkins Ave from 5th to Beechwood, although there might only be room for an uphill lane, and even then only if they eliminate parking.
– contraflow lanes on Pembroke and/or Castleman
– get rid of parking on one side of beechwood and redo those lanes correctly
– either centre or baum could use a lane and there was some plan to do so.
– also revive the plan to put lanes on forbes from Craig to MM.
— Wilkins up from 5th is not too bad. But it’s relatively narrow and I believe the residents on that stretch don’t have off-street parking. Sharrows.
— Beechwood is fine, until you start getting past that curve toward Brownsville, paralleling the river. But there’s a lot of residential parking. Sharrows, signage. (Also, repaving…) Did I mention speed limit enforcement?
— Baum could absolutely use a bollarded lane. At least from East Liberty to Millvale; or better, to Melwood to connect with the bikeway to Polish Hill and a left into Oakland.
— I believe those are still on the CMU master plan. In the meanwhile, sharrows.
One more stretch:
– Forbes countersense from Bellfield, at least to Bigelow. I see bikers come down Forbes then hop onto the sidewalk for that bit. Would solve two problems.
From the end of Smallman at 36th, I’d like to see a bike-only outbound lane on that bit of lunar surface named Melville Way, currently one-way inbound. It would make it a lot easier to get to 40th Street and not have to deal with trucks and school buses on that set of linked parking lots that end at the space between the jersey barriers under the 40th St Bridge.
It would also be nice to have a legal way to get from 39th to 40th. Adding some sort of traffic control on 40th so anything not having a 200 hp engine has a fighting chance of getting onto or across that street. Ambient traffic speeds of 40 or better are routine, both directions.
I would be in favor of where there are bike lanes and parking, moving the parking to the outside of the bike lane, essentially protecting the bike lane. This could be done on places like Beechwood, Beacon, etc.
While not very important, I feel like South Beatty Avenue could use protected bike lanes, it would make it a little bit easier for bikers to get from the East Side Development to the E. Liberty Boulevard Bike Lanes. The road does not allow for parking and is generally a straight shot, however, signage and a light would need to be put in at Penn.
I believe the reason parking is not permitted on South Beatty is because that’s a PAT recovery area–mostly leftover from several routes that used to end there but are now through-routes, i think, but I doubt you’re going to be able to wrest it from them.
(IIRC, there’s plenty of room on the other side, though, though there’s a bunch of parking-lot entrances to worry about instead.)
A few on my side of town:
McClure – connecting it to the Old Pen trailhead (or at least add some speed bumps to stop cars from doing 40 around those bends)
Beaver Ave (not likely to happen since it parallels the trail, but the trail is not lit and full of damn rabbits, and I feel safer on the road around this time of the year)
California – Lincoln from Marshall pretty much all the way to Emsworth.
I think the latter would bring more people/business to the North Boroughs. I am generally comfortable riding on the road there but you do encounter an a-hole every now and then
Although I would love to see the Penn Ave bike lane continue all the way up Penn to Lawrenceville, I don’t see that happening. So as a second choice, I’d like to see a bike lane on Smallman, at least to 16th, and maybe all the way to 11th.
Some things I’d love to see.
#1 East Liberty to Garfield connection:
Rename Ansley St to Broad St, since it follows the same path.
Make broad st two way through east liberty.
Make a wide bike-ped only path through Garland Parklet as a throughway to connect Broad St, connecting at the crossing of S. Euclid Ave (formerly penn circle west )
#2 make bike connections to the highland park bridge. Currently no good safe way to get on to the sidewalk to access highland park bridge for bikes or pedestrians. Need access from washington blvd, one wild place, and butler st.
#3 Bike lanes on butler st (or at least well marked shoulders) from 57th st to highland park bridge.
#4 Bike lanes, bikeway or bike-path, along washignton blvd & butler st (or through highland park) from negley run road to one wild place.
#5 Something to better connect CCAC campus with the ohio river trail. Not sure of best option.
#6 better way to get from east ohio st to CCAC campus directly through allegheny circle.
@ ahlir East Carson, the entertainment district, should be pedestrian-only on the week-ends.
Given the driving proclivities of drunkards, I’m guessing that would just make bar owners in Lawrenceville rich.
…that seems less like a reason not to do it than a reason to also do Butler St…
Given the clientele, I suspect that the Strip joints (so to speak) would be the beneficiaries. I may be missing something, but Butler doesn’t seem like a magnet for rowdy suburban drunks (yet).
But then, Penn is definitely a good pedestrian walk zone target. I think it’s come up before (for Saturdays). As a regular area shopper, I intensely dislike the speeders that zoom through there.
Which reminds me… Speed Limit Enforcement on Penn in the food shopping section, with the limit set at 20mph. (I think Penn already has sharrows, so I’ll spare you the mention of sharrows.)
#3 Bike lanes on butler st (or at least well marked shoulders) from 57th st to highland park bridge.
Thank you so much for mentioning this. I thought I was the only one that doesn’t like the complete free for all and sometimes cars even passing one and other on that stretch. Talk about a huge road with no markings at all, but at least there is one other person in Pittsburgh that wants at least a little white line or something.
Becks Run…it is on the East Bike Map but it is a scary street. It is in desperate need of a new paving and could use a real lane since it is on the map. Also, Becks Run has this useless third lane….just make it two lanes and create the bike lane. It would also be great to make an actual path that went from Carson over the railroad tracks to the Path by the river.
I ride it probably 3 times a week to work (9 miles to the PNC Park Area).
+1 on becks run rd. If we could get a legal crossing of the train tracks at the intersection of carson st, this could be a great connector from the southern neighborhoods to the city (albeit a bit longer) via the GAP / Steel Valley Trail.
I doubt there will ever be a legal crossing there, as it would be grade-level and apparently new grade-level crossings aren’t allowed by the Feds.
I used to ride on Becks Run every day. It would be a nice road for biking with a few improvements. And you are right, there’s really no need for the third lane there.
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