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UrbaniDesDev, February 9, 2006 in Pittsburgh
So where is this from and whose idea is it? It looks like a really warm and fuzzy daydream to me... at our current rate maybe a 50 years off. But I like to daydream too.
The way I see it, there are two things that are problematic in this alignment. Issue 1 is congestion on the T bridge heading into Downtown. I think it could easily handle another major line (nice to have more frequent trains Downtown too), but what other potential lines might share this bridge?
Issue 2 is the South Side alignment. It's both too close to a 2nd Ave line and too far from the E Carson corridor to serve it any better than a 2nd Ave alignment. OTOH it would serve the slopes pretty nicely, but is that a priority?
I think if a 2nd Ave line gets built first then by the time there is a real need for a South Side alignment there will be at least one new pedestrian bridge connecting to 2nd Ave (besides Hot Metal) and at that point it might be a good time to build a tunnel underneath the flats instead. For now it might also be a better idea to establish a commuter line over the existing freight lines in the area that work their way down to the Mon Faye valley. Another option, as proposed in the Citizen's Plan, is to build a T extention from South Hills to Century III. Another option is having a 2nd Ave alignment that splits off and heads over one of the several freight bridges around Homestead that don't seem to be in use whatsoever. So it's probably not even worth building a South Side T alignment unless it's burried right down the middle of the flats.
It look like the Second Ave. line would share the existing railway tracks along the river? That would be awesome. I am pretty sure those tracks are only used at night, so running some kind of commuter train along them in the daytime would be easy. It wouldn't serve much besides the Pittsburgh Technology Center, but since that is supposed to be expanding to include more than just offices, that could be good. Plus people could get off at the Hot Metal station and use the walkway blueblack mentioned to get to South Side Works.
But where did this come from? Is it your own idea or someone else's?
Yes it is my idea. It may be warm and fuzzy, but thats the fun of doing it on my own. There is a wide right of way through the South Side that is unused. I particularly like it more than the Second Avenue because it will serve the city neighborhoods and not those who live outside of the city.
The South Side is booming and nothing is being done to handle what will be coming. Carson Street is becoming choked. I also prefer it at the base of the slopes because the waterfront will grow on it's own due to its proximity to the river. I feel to much is done to promote new development and not enough is done to help existing communities, such as the slopes and the flats that arent along the river. I suppose, ideally, under Carson would be best, but Im sure business there would argue the point.
It would also be great for tourism. Connecting the Terminal Street Development, the South Side, the South Side Works, Sandcastles, The Waterfront and Old Homestead,Pittsburgh Pallisades Proposal, and Kennywood Park. Running through the suffocating lower Mon Valley would only help them by connecting to other successful developments and more than just connecting to downtown.
But in the end it is one of my "warm and fuzzy" ideas.
I should ad that it could be the same line that would run through downtown and the North Shore connector and someday off to the airport.
I now have ACAd at home so I having fun.
Yeah, after seeing you thread about putting a crown on Mellon Tower I thought "this guy is having fun with some computer program"
Keep thinking big, it never hurts
I really wish one of us would run for congress already (maybe me) the more I study and review thses things the more I come to the realization that it is federal funds that make the most extravagant project get done like yesterday. Kennedy pushing the "big dig" in Boston that defies logic in many many ways, Bud Shuster getting the signs for Interstate 99 all placed before most of the route was even cleared for construction. About 99.9% of this transportation stuff is "fiat" all it takes is somebody in congress that has a form of seniority on a transport or ways and means and all of a sudden if you want an interstate highway from the Turnpike to Altoona its already on the maps and under construction.
Somebody wake up Santorum on this!
Santorum is too busy monitoring our "morality" than to actually do something useful
If a Second Avenue Line is built first it would negate the Oakland line that would run through the Hill. It bypasses all the city's neighborhood. The purpose of a metro line is not only to bring people in and out of the city but to make it easier to get around the city
That is hysterical
There's no such thing as a stupid question, so here goes lol ..
Can/do lightrail trains use the same 'type' of track as regular trains? Can they be "fitted" to carry lightrail if not? I ask because I was just remembering how I took a large train (I imagine it was Amtrak) with my aunt from the transportation center in downtown Mckeesport to downtown Pittsburgh. I was like 6 or 7 ('86-'87?) at the time. I remember being so excited to board that thing and go where the big buildings were! lol
Anyway, considering that those sort of regional connections aren't really that available any longer, would it be possible to use light rail (T) on those same tracks? I think it could really add to and perhaps expedite redevelopment in the region. When I hear my mother and aunt talk about when they had the train, they always say it was so convenient .. they just took the bus to the center and hopped
on the train! I remember McK transportation center being so packed! The last time I was there it seemed so empty. So sad.
There is a technology that was developed in Germany that allows a "tram" to opperate on variable gage tracks. That was a car could use the underground subway lines but also switch to freight lines also. HOWEVER I don't think its ever been put into use...so the simple answer to your question is no. Commuter train's can run on freight rail tracks (which I think we need) but light rail cars cannot.
^^ Thanks for the quick response. hmm, well that sucks! We need somthing, that's for sure!
I think the problem is getting permission from the train companies. I wonder how the government can use eminent domain to cinfiscate hundreds of private properties but can't touch abandoned or underused rail right of ways. It's supposed to be about the good of the people isn't it? I imagine this is an impossibilty, but think of the possibillities for the South Side if those pesky tracks werent along the river. hmmm
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