Thursday, February 07, 2008

Boarding a Greyhound to Pittsburgh

I just realized that I never made note of the fact that the Pittsburgh-Transit Blog has given up the ghost as Matt explains. It's too bad. Given that even the dedicated bikers of the Burgh have their own blog, you would think that the army of daily commuters would generate enough interest for a transit-focused blog here. I was recently looking at the Seattle Transit Blog which had some commentary on a plan being discussed out there recently to study new streetcar lines. But a new transit blog here could either be from a rider perspective as was Matt C's blog, or from the driver's which had also been served well by Shawn Bennear's (now defunct) web page on Pittsburgh Transit History.

But I have been transit-deficient of late... so I just took a look at he contractor's web page mentioning the still-under-construction Grant Street Transportation Center, illustration below. It says "Completion Date: December 2007". My calendar must be off. I suppose I should know, but when is the bus station (yes, it's a bus station... remember, this is a euphemism free zone) due to open?

Some (many?) may recall my tif with the pseudo proposal in the Post Gazette last year to save the Port Authority by eliminating the long squiggly line. Without getting into that too much, my main beef was that the cartoon'ish presentation so oversimiplified some serious issues facing mass transit to the point of being counterproductive... and most certainly enabled the opponents of transit more than anything else. But it did touch upon an issue that I would agree with in that there has to be a way to rationalize transit within Downtown. Toward that end I have to wonder if there is any real thought of leveraging the new 'transportation center'. Smarter minds than me would have to figure out what could mean, but I just wonder if the question has been asked.

Where is the Greyhound Sign?

7 Comments:

Blogger etwilson said...

There's a newish Pittsburgh transit blog at:
http://peakdirection.blogspot.com/

Wednesday, February 06, 2008 11:04:00 PM  
Blogger Schultz said...

Green is Good covers transit! I'm lucky enough to be able to take the T into work everyday - the only problem is I can't take it when I have to go to Oakland or other parts of town. Someday we'll get an extension to Oakland - but shame on us all for letting this North Shore Connector project get under way.

Thursday, February 07, 2008 10:30:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm afraid a T extension to Oakland won't come before we're retired and possibly dead. I worked at Port Authroity during planning of the Spine Line, which would have gone from downtown to Oakland. There were three possible routes. Cost estimates got so high and federal funding was decreasing for major projects like this, so the county commissioners (I think) pulled the plug and decided to do the north side route first. This was inthe early 90s. Also, the Hill District, where the line would have been bored deep underground, is criss-crossed with a honeycomb of mines which could have caused problems above ground.

I dont think that the feds are ever going to be funding capital projects to the extent they have in the past. It will require a larger local share, and I don't thing we're going to be able to pay the cost.

Alternately, there is excellent bus service between downtown and Oakland that can get you there in a matter of 15 or 20 minutes.

Thursday, February 07, 2008 11:56:00 AM  
Blogger EdHeath said...

Why isn't there a bus that takes the Busway to the Neville street exit and then does a loop through Oakland? It could take the same route as the EBO, but coming from Downtown instead of the east. Perhaps it could do a mini loop through downtown, turning onto William Penn Way and then onto Grant from Sixth Ave, so it could catch passengers from the T Stop.

Thursday, February 07, 2008 12:19:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

For non-riders, the biggest impact of transit is the cost and quality of goods they purchase/consume. How did that cook, bartender, food server, retail clerk, bagger, etc. get to work? How do you think the restaurant or store can afford to keep their prices low? The more expensive or less available transit gets, the more expensive (or unavailable) your local goods and services get. If everyone thought about transit every time they had contact with a low-wage worker or paid a discount price, there would be a lot more people fighting to save it.

This is all to say, a "transit blog" might be interesting to us riders but it isn't reaching the people who can save it.

Thursday, February 07, 2008 12:53:00 PM  
Blogger C. Briem said...

concur with the last. Maybe we need someone to buy a few thousand "I Ride the Bus" buttons to hand out to workers in service industries where they will be seen by the public.

The Spine Line history is a bit more complex than that. Changing priorities in DC at the time would have likely pulled the funding for the spine line no matter what local interests were at the county or city level. I have one spine line document scanned here:
http://www.briem.com/files/spineline1993.pdf

and did not mean to dis any other transit focused blog out there. Just thought Matthew was doing a good, if thankless, job at it.

and for Ed... sounds like a letter to Steve Bland.

Thursday, February 07, 2008 7:15:00 PM  
Blogger Brent said...

Yep, there is a new transit blog in town... mine. Peak Direction hopes to cover Pittsburgh transit in full in addition to transit issues across the country. I just finished some posts on the East Busway and on the Presidential candidates on transit funding. Hope you like it!

Thursday, February 21, 2008 6:34:00 PM  

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