Mon-Oakland Mobility Plan

Four Mile Run Watershed Public Process: Next Public Meeting scheduled for May 22, 2018!

Thank you for continuing to stay engaged in the public process regarding the improvements in Four Mile Run. The Mon-Oakland Mobility study is wrapping up, yet PWSA is now moving into the next phase of design for the stormwater improvements in Four Mile Run. On May 22, 2018, we will host a joint meeting to share the findings of the mobility study, and layout the next steps in the final engineering of the PWSA project. This meeting will be hosted jointly by DOMI, the URA, PWSA and the Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy (PPC). During this meeting, PWSA will introduce the consultant team that has been selected to do the final engineering for the green infrastructure project in Four Mile Run. This PWSA project builds on the Green First Plan, and is a continuation of the Four Mile Run preliminary design work that was produced by PPC and its partners.

At the last Mon-Oakland Mobility Study meeting on Feb. 20, 2018, we proposed a recommended alignment for the new micro-transit connection, and collected final feedback regarding its alignment and operations. Since then, our engineering team has been working out the details of how this proposed connection will work, including ridership calculations, cost implications, and other operations issues

Since the last public meeting, we have also met with the five local core community groups most impacted by the project to share how the design has evolved and s olicit feedback. We are now finalizing the investigations that are part of this scope, and will share the final findings of this study at the next public meeting.

Date: Tuesday, May 22, 2018
Time: 6-8pm
Location: International Union of Operating Engineers (IUOE) (300 Saline St, Pittsburgh, PA 15207)

Summary of November Public Meetings

On November 14 and 15, The City of Pittsburgh’s Department of Mobility and Infrastructure, in partnership with the Urban Redevelopment Authority, held two public meetings to discuss making connections between Hazelwood, Greenfield, Four Mile Run, and Oakland. The intention of the meetings was to provide information about current demographics, travel patterns, employment centers, and other data that will help us (community, City, and other partners) to arrive at the best solution for making better mobility connections.

Plan Meetings

This is the beginning of a new process that does has not pre-determined what type of connection would be best, how it could operate, what path it may take, what vehicle/mode it would be, etc. The goal is to have an open dialogue about the best way to solve what is a very real mobility challenge for this part of the City. The mobility needs also dovetail with other infrastructure challenges, such as stormwater management, that are being addressed via partnerships with the Parks Conservancy, PWSA, and others. The green infrastructure solutions proposed can happen independent of a mobility project, but to the extent that we can achieve efficiencies between the projects, we intend to explore those with the community.

This is a summary of what we heard at the public meetings—this is unfiltered information direct from community members. We will take this feedback into account as the process moves forward. More public meetings will take place after the holidays, and we will explore all the options on the table in an open, transparent way. Thank you for your participation in helping to shape this plan.

Feel free to add additional comments via email at

Definition of Success

Participants were asked to complete the sentence: “For a mobility connection to be successful for me, it must [be] …”

  • Safe
  • Reliable
  • Not require a personal automobile
  • Usable after dark
  • Not too hilly, no cars or slow cars, no huge puddles, no broken glass, never closed for construction
  • Usable in snow/ice
  • Public
  • Affordable
  • Frequent (and/or timed connections if transit)
  • Zero/low carbon
  • (For transit) Frequent
  • Separate bike/ped and vehicles
  • [have] A MTP that maintains bike route through all construction
  • Connect to a trail; [be] available 24/7, operate safe / green restrooms
  • Have multiple connections or access points
  • Be green. (That means converting an existing vehicle road, limiting car access and reserve it for public transit. Not turning a park into a road for cars. Use Swinburne Bridge Instead. Shuttle access only one way at rush hour. It will reduce car traffic, encourage shuttle use, and relieve residents at the top of traffic jams in front of their houses.)
  • Expand/enhance bike trail – add more trail connections, add healthy ride sharing, add bike rakes
  • Maintained in winter
  • Keep bike / pedestrian trail open through construction
  • Not put buses or mobility vehicles on a bike trail
  • Be public. No vehicles in the park (Gondolas are fine)
  • First use existing roads before adding more streets / vehicles to the city and our neighborhood.
  • No private transport, we don’t need to repeat the San Francisco / Silicon Valley Mess!
  • [use] No flood money for shuttle
  • Not run through public parks.
  • Public access
  • Available 24 hours and after dark
  • It must not turn The Run and Panther Hollow into “Park and Ride” lots (by which I mean people park all over the neighborhood to get the bus)
  • Preserve the “parkness” of the park
  • Don’t Privatize Public Land
  • Be reliable
  • Designed w/ stormwater management in mind
  • Not force cyclists to share the only major car-free route from downtown to Oakland w/ motorized vehicles
  • No motorized vehicles in the park
  • [a] Legal connection for peds & bikes from Junction Hollow to Panther Hollow Lake
  • It must not add frequent bus or shuttle traffic to adjacent neighborhoods
  • Cheap!
  • Not turn a public asset over to private companies.
  • Not run right through my quiet neighborhoods and increase traffic parking problems
  • Not destroy one of my favorite parks
Sticky notes on white boards showing success and concerns.

Concerns, Needs, Wants

Participants were asked to put a numbered dot on a map and write a note that corresponds with that number. Not every dot had a note that matched up, but of the ones that did, here’s what was written. Also, we received a few comments that either were missing a dot, or were intended to apply to a broader geography—those are here, too.

Morning (11/14) Session:

  • 1: We must have a level crossing, bridge, or tunnel across RR tracks at Panther Hollow Lake! Any disruption to bike/ped. Access to panther hollow trail should be preceded by constructing on *** route. Any proposal shuttle should be required to (3?) make stops up the length of the route for limited mobility residents
  • 4: Traffic is backing up here – needs traffic signal – accident waiting to happen “wild west attitude”
  • 5: Better connection between Boundary & Schenley Plaza
  • 6: Lights for bike path
  • 7: Don’t want vehicles in the park
  • 8: consider re-using the paper street called fund that used to connect to Swinburne street
  • 9: Concerned about my children’s safety being lost by constant traffic + lack of emergency escape route.
  • 10: Constant Strangers in my Neighborhood. Would you want that ???
  • 11: safe + Dedicated bike + ped access through from Junction Hollow trail to 5th Ave
  • 12: Oakland circulator Restoration : Public Transit accessibility + viability to connect residential Oakland with 5th Ave businesses + transit connections
  • 12: Safety concerns with shuttles in a Residential Neighborhood with kids and steal park land.
  • I agree we need to be able to cross RR tracks from Junction Hollow to Schenley / Panther Hollow Lake
  • Port authority should be part of this discussion to integrate any solutions into the existing transit network. Is the issue really the mobility options for residents of The Run or for the future Hazelwood Green site?
  • Is the issue really that 15207 is underserved by public transit? It seems that this is a solution anticipating the problem of the Hazelwood Green and of course buses don’t run where there is currently no people.
  • What is the problem with any of alt routes when Greenfield Bridge was closed send shuttles any of these routes rather than build a new one
  • Gondola from Greenfield / No buses No cars
  • Junction Hollow Transportation Priorities:
    • Maintain the bike/ped path through Junction Hollow during construction. Dirt OK, if temporary.
    • We must have a bikeable level crossing, bridge, or tunnel for bike/ped access to Panther Hollow Lake to get across the railroad tracks.
    • If a shuttle happens, it must be public and have stops for passengers in The Run and Panther Hollow neighborhoods
    • If a shuttle happens, it must be public and have stops for passengers in The Run and Panther Hollow neighborhoods.
    • Gates at each end of the bike/ped trail in Junciton Hollow should be locked at all times to keep cars off the trail, except in case of emergency. Similar for the shuttle road, to keep private cars off it.
    • Paul Heckbert, Edgewood resident,
Morning session sticky notes on map..

Making Connections

We had a pair of boards set up to get more interactive feedback using a combination of stickers, pushpins, and yarn. One board asked participants to use pushpins to indicate the beginning and end of trips they’d like to make without needing to drive, and to connect them via color-coded yarn (the colors indicated the mode of the trip: red for public transit, green for bicycle, and blue for walking).

Then, participants could use stickers (that had the same color codes for the modes) to describe the purpose of the trip(s) they assembled on the map with the yarn. The trip types could be either commute, errands, recreation, or other—some participants described their trips further with Post-it notes.

Making connections on map.

General Comments

Here are things that we heard via the Q&A session immediately following the presentation. Some of these ideas may overlap with what we had on our boards, but they’re shown here for completeness.

Morning (11/14) Session:

  • Why are you making a NEW vehicle road through a park? If you want to decrease traffic, you must discourage driving and encourage public transit. To do this you must limit car access to an existing vehicle road and reserve it for public transit. Swinburne Bridge could be reserved for shuttles and buses one way at peak hours. This will cost the city nothing, will discourage driving, and will relieve the residents at the top of Swinburne of the daily traffic jams in front of their home. No road through the park.

Evening (11/15) Session:

  • Put a trail from the run to Sestili Nursery. Swinburne is a death trap.
  • Going to Panther Hollow from Fifth Ave in Oakland is not safe now. To walk or ride it needs to be [safer].
  • Add bike wheel ramps to Park Steps. Like Greenfield Ave steps to the Run already has.
  • Contact Venture Outdoors .org. They use the park a lot & may have good ideas.
  • Fix existing entrances to the Park. Steps by Schenley Bridge/Parkview would cut my commute (walking) in half!
  • Build an incline connecting the run to south Oakland. There used to be steps by Frazier field going over 376 down to South Side.
  • Low cost transportation is more democratic.
  • We should not tolerate sharing the trail with motor vehicles.
  • Evening Session Notes.
  • How much of the problem could be solved by redrawing PAT routes to serve the current needs?
  • Do not close the Junction Hollow Trail during construction if at all possible.
  • Do not degrade the service of Junction Hollow Trail for bicycles and pedestrians. This includes adding shared use with shuttle buses.
  • PWSA has no money, ALCOSAN should pay & Pitt / CMU / UPMC for green infrastructure.
  • Calm traffic on Panther Hollow and Greenfield through Schenley Park.

Emailed Comment:

Thank you to Mary Shaw, who emailed a concept map for Juno St, which is linked here, and will be shared with the project team for consideration.

Concept map for Juno St.