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  #19221  
Old Posted Jul 13, 2017, 5:00 PM
BrianTH BrianTH is online now
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Originally Posted by Don't Be That Guy View Post
As a very pro-transit person, I have to say that people are kidding themselves if they think BRT is going to significantly reduce traffic on BoA.
It more works the other way around. If you reconfigured BoA as they are proposing, it would force the traffic volume to be lower. Some people would then have to find alternatives.

The question is then what kind of alternatives are available to them. If you have already invested in BRT by then and it has plenty of peak capacity left at favorable operating rates (which it probably will), more of those people choosing alternatives will then choose that particular alternative.
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  #19222  
Old Posted Jul 13, 2017, 5:08 PM
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Originally Posted by highlander206 View Post
the vast majority of the people using that road are likely not ever going to consider using transit as the main reason people use that road is to get to 579 north or the Liberty Bridge. Unless one is going to Downtown or Oakland, there aren't too many places you can get to in this area by transit in a reasonable amount of time that they'd use it over a car when one is available IMO.
I do think a significant number of people using BoA at peak times are in fact going to or from Downtown--I've been one myself frequently and on those occasions I can see the many others doing it too.

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I think it would be a lot better to focus on cleaning up Fifth and Forbes through Uptown than focus on what is basically a highway that doesn't really have any businesses along it residents would go to.
But that's circular reasoning. If it was a pleasant boulevard with great views, it would undoubtedly attract more businesses, more residences, more walkers, and so on.

And in fact, if such a boulevard already existed, with those businesses and such along with it, I doubt anyone would endorse tearing that all down to build a not-to-spec quasi-highway instead.
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  #19223  
Old Posted Jul 13, 2017, 5:12 PM
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Originally Posted by Austinlee View Post
That's some ambitious Uptown planning! I like the idea but echo some of the others concerns about traffic. Normally I don't worry about disrupting traffic but the cliffside 4 lane Boulavard of the Allies is extremely busy. I have a hard time seeing how that wouldn't be a traffic nightmare. The BRT, which i totally support 100% would not alleviate commuters or any traffic going from the eastern suburbs to the northern areas. But damn, those renderings are promising.
I think it is worth noting they would not actually shut it down entirely. There would likely be some loss of peak capacity, but again many people could keep using it. And the adjustment would start with those who had the best alternatives.
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  #19224  
Old Posted Jul 13, 2017, 5:56 PM
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I think it is worth noting they would not actually shut it down entirely. There would likely be some loss of peak capacity, but again many people could keep using it. And the adjustment would start with those who had the best alternatives.
Of course, it would be shut down entirely while it was being redesigned, which might take months. I'm assuming that despite being a quasi-highway, since PennDOT won't personally be involved it should be a bit quicker than a normal highway project.
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  #19225  
Old Posted Jul 13, 2017, 7:12 PM
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Originally Posted by eschaton View Post
Of course, it would be shut down entirely while it was being redesigned, which might take months. I'm assuming that despite being a quasi-highway, since PennDOT won't personally be involved it should be a bit quicker than a normal highway project.
They may also be able to keep some lanes open during most of the construction, or most of the daytime construction at least.
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  #19226  
Old Posted Jul 14, 2017, 10:44 AM
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The URA is on board with pursuing a federal grant for the BRT project:

https://www.bizjournals.com/pittsbur...t-for-bus.html

Money for such projects may end up scarcer, but if the program isn't cut entirely this one might have a chance.
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  #19227  
Old Posted Jul 14, 2017, 1:55 PM
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I noticed last night that the Art Commission has started posting not only their meeting minutes, but PDF's of their full agendas, similar to the zoning, planning, and historical review commissions. Check the latest out here.

Obviously as public art, these tend to be small projects, but the latest one has some nice details about the new public park planned in East Liberty/Larimer, some neat new bike racks planned for downtown, and a redesign of Liberty Center's plaza.
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  #19228  
Old Posted Jul 14, 2017, 4:55 PM
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Originally Posted by eschaton View Post
I noticed last night that the Art Commission has started posting not only their meeting minutes, but PDF's of their full agendas, similar to the zoning, planning, and historical review commissions. Check the latest out here.

Obviously as public art, these tend to be small projects, but the latest one has some nice details about the new public park planned in East Liberty/Larimer, some neat new bike racks planned for downtown, and a redesign of Liberty Center's plaza.
Cool find!

I'm always a sucker for fun bike racks.

The redesign of the Liberty Center plaza is a bit boring to me, but that is still a high-value project given the prominence of that corner.

I really liked that "River Roots" project in East Liberty/Larimer.

Random aside--that was a LOT of pages for that really pretty modest Chicken Hill project. Same with the mini cell towers thing.
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  #19229  
Old Posted Jul 14, 2017, 5:45 PM
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Originally Posted by BrianTH View Post
Random aside--that was a LOT of pages for that really pretty modest Chicken Hill project. Same with the mini cell towers thing.
I thought so as well. It seems that similar to the HRC presentations, a lot of documentation needs to be given regarding products and schematics. In contrast, Planning Commission presentations do not go into that level of detail.
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  #19230  
Old Posted Jul 14, 2017, 6:28 PM
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So, the URA met yesterday. The headline issues - pursuing the $100 million grant for BRT, and starting the marketing of Lexington Technology Park - were already covered. But there was more in the agenda. Some tidbits from the end of the Pittsburgh Business Time's report on the BRT project...

Quote:
In other actions, the URA board voted:

to approve final plans and financing for 150 units of affordable housing in the East Liberty Gardens site.

to accept the plan by the Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership for a URA-owned building at 604 Liberty Avenue to be used as a new retail accelerator, a project expected to cost $902,000 including the PDP acquiring the property.

to execute a three-party agreement that includes the city of Pittsburgh and the Pittsburgh Land Bank before a council vote on the matter scheduled for next week.
Looking through the raw agenda (which I linked to above) there are an array of interesting projects applying for 2018 low-income housing tax credits. The list is as follows:

Quote:
(a) East Liberty - Mellon’s Orchard Phase I
We have discussed this project in the past.

Quote:
(b) East Liberty - North Negley Residences
I believe this is the project which will potentially go where the old gas station site is today.

Quote:
(c) Garfield - Garfield Highlands
No idea, but presumably it will fill in some of the many vacant parcels higher up on the hill in Garfield

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(d) Hill District - New Granada Square Apartments
Has been covered by Post-Gazette

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(e) Hill District - Civic Arena Site / 28 Acres
Self-evident.

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(f) Hill District - Centre Avenue Mixed-Use Development
I have no idea what this is.

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(g) Larimer - Larimer / East Liberty Choice Neighborhoods Phase III
This will apparently be a small phase of the infill project, adding 60 units where a baseball diamond is today. See page 11 of this presentation.

Quote:
(h) Lower Lawrenceville - Doughboy Affordable Living
Apparently this is the infill apartment buildings planned for the 3300 and 3400 blocks of Penn Avenue.

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(i) Squirrel Hill South - Riverview Towers Preservation
Rehab of these buildings.

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(j) Troy Hill - Heinz Residences
No clue.
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  #19231  
Old Posted Jul 15, 2017, 2:43 AM
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Photo of that development in Oakland, whatever its called from this evening.

Untitled by photolitherland, on Flickr
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  #19232  
Old Posted Jul 15, 2017, 11:59 AM
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The EIC, appropriately, has been certified LEED Platinum:

https://www.bizjournals.com/pittsbur...fied-leed.html

Random thought, but this nicely-renovated historic building might get a bit more attention if and when the Lower Hill site ever does get developed.
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  #19233  
Old Posted Jul 16, 2017, 8:49 PM
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Originally Posted by BrianTH View Post
The EIC, appropriately, has been certified LEED Platinum:

https://www.bizjournals.com/pittsbur...fied-leed.html

Random thought, but this nicely-renovated historic building might get a bit more attention if and when the Lower Hill site ever does get developed.
Yeah, that renovation turned out well. Hopefully it does become more connected to nearby development eventually.
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  #19234  
Old Posted Jul 16, 2017, 9:06 PM
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Yeah, that renovation turned out well. Hopefully it does become more connected to nearby development eventually.
Agreed. Great use of a very large building.


And Photolith: That apartment building is called The Empire.
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  #19235  
Old Posted Jul 17, 2017, 3:27 PM
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I was right by The Empire site the same evening as PhotoLith (my son likes to eat at the buffet at All India). It's nowhere near topped out, but already looking to be a beast. The elevator cores are clearly visible from the Bloomfield Bridge now as well, so the entire building will have a great view corridor as well.

I also noticed last week that the real work on the Penn/Eighth apartment project is starting. They have been gutting the old buildings for awhile, and had fenced off the surface parking lots a few weeks ago. Now they have begun excavating for the foundation on the new construction segment of the project. The design is by far the best I've seen for a downtown project (one of the best in Pittsburgh period) so I can't wait until it starts going up.
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  #19236  
Old Posted Jul 17, 2017, 4:04 PM
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From the builder's site for The Empire:
Quote:
The 17-story building will allow for parking to be placed on the first six floors of the structure.

The seventh floor will host a swimming pool, gym, sauna, and golf simulator–a handful of the many amenities to entice future residents.

Floor eight to seventeen will be a mixture of single, double, and triple rooms to house both students and young professionals that desire to live in the heart of downtown Pittsburgh.
7 out of 17 stories are parking? That seems excessive.
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  #19237  
Old Posted Jul 17, 2017, 4:16 PM
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Originally Posted by GeneW View Post
From the builder's site for The Empire:

7 out of 17 stories are parking? That seems excessive.
Looking back at the planning commission presentation from 2015, it's clear that the parking garage does not include the entirety of the first seven stories, only a portion of the rear "dog leg" of the building which extends onto N Dithridge. In total 381 parking spaces will be in the garage, which is a bit more than the unit count (329), but might be related to the parking requirements associated with the retail on the first story.
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  #19238  
Old Posted Jul 17, 2017, 6:02 PM
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  #19239  
Old Posted Jul 17, 2017, 7:29 PM
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Originally Posted by GeneW View Post
From the builder's site for The Empire:

7 out of 17 stories are parking? That seems excessive.
It should be an impressive structure. The Omni William Penn downtown is also 17 stories for comparison.

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Originally Posted by eschaton View Post
Looking back at the planning commission presentation from 2015, it's clear that the parking garage does not include the entirety of the first seven stories, only a portion of the rear "dog leg" of the building which extends onto N Dithridge. In total 381 parking spaces will be in the garage, which is a bit more than the unit count (329), but might be related to the parking requirements associated with the retail on the first story.
Also, I didn't know it was going to have retail on the first floor. That's good.

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That web-cam angle is excellent!

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  #19240  
Old Posted Jul 18, 2017, 12:26 PM
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If I'm not mistaken, the Empire parking will also make up for the municipal lot that was lost at the corner of Centre and Craig. I think there will be an area for public parking in the building, which may explain why so many spaces.
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