Unfortunately the video (said video has been removed by the original uploader for unknown reasons as of 1/23/12) for new North Shore Connector is more awesome than the thing itself. Not to be a bummer, but let’s put this into perspective. The main function of the two lines is to connect Downtown to some of our favorite places, including Heinz Field, Carnegie Science Center, PNC Park, The Andy Warhol Museum, etc…

Almost half a billion dollars has been spent developing a light rail system to take people a few blocks to a couple of sports venues that happen to have museums around them. Pittsburgh is a sports town, but come on, games in those stadiums are not played 7 days a week. Meanwhile, in other areas of the city, Pittsburghers are having difficulty finding a bus to take them Downtown.

What happened to the plan to create a light rail system from the airport to Oakland? Or the $81 million (cheap in comparison) plan Bill Peduto had that would connect Hazelwood to Oakland to Lawrenceville? Pittsburgh could use a more attractive way to get students from here to there.

Students are a driving force in the Pittsburgh economy and once again their influence is being neglected. Instead of finding new ways to transport rich CMU students to places other than Murray Avenue and Waterfront, the city is directing a lot of energy on a small radius that serves few.

Try to imagine all of the students in Oakland waiting on Fifth Avenue to take a cramped bus to Downtown, then get off and wait for a train to take them to North Shore. Not happening. Students don’t care about North Shore, and there’s nothing attracting them to Downtown.

In short, the new system is very linear, connecting a short distance of A to B, instead of connecting the neighborhoods that really need connected: Station Square, Southside, Squirrel Hill, Oakland, Shadyside, Lawrenceville, Strip District, etc.

The few people who actually live in Downtown Pittsburgh do not need to be transported out of Downtown, but instead, we should be thinking of new ways (and reasons) to transport people INTO town.

But hey, this is Pittsburgh. The city that can’t think too big, or else we’ll lose focus of the stuff that matter most in life: Super Bowls and Stanley Cups.

When is the North Shore Connector set to open?
March 25, 2012

North Shore Connector Construction

North Shore Connector Construction (pics via HerrVebah)

North Shore Connector Construction

North Shore Connector Construction (pics via HerrVebah)

North Shore Connector Construction

North Shore Connector Construction (pics via HerrVebah)

This is not the original video, but it is a good one.


The video was removed from Vimeo and uploaded to the pghtransit youtube channel.

See the new T stations. Ride through the tunnel. Enjoy a trip on Port Authority of Allegheny County’s new light rail extension between Downtown Pittsburgh and the North Shore. Service is scheduled to start on March 25, 2012, extending the 25-mile T light rail system beyond Downtown to the developing North Shore area within the city’s North Side. Note – this is time lapse video.

Thanks to two funding agreements, the Free Fare Zone in Downtown will be extended to include the new T stations on the North Shore.

Allegheny Station fares will be free thanks to an agreement with the Steelers and Rivers Casino. Riders using the North Side Station – located under the West General Robinson Street Garage – will enjoy free fares courtesy of the Stadium Authority and Alco Parking. The new Gateway Center Station also will open on March 25.