Construction will begin between Feb. 2021 and Jan. 2022. 

Photo: As part of Phase 2 of the Allegheny Circle Two-Way Conversion Project, crosswalks and two flashing warning ‘school zone’ speed limit signs will be added and loading will be prohibited on the corner of the road near Pittsburgh Allegheny K-5. By Lauren Stauffer

By Jazmine Ramsey

On July 8, the Northside Leadership Conference (NSLC) hosted a virtual public meeting to unveil updated plans for the two-way conversion of Allegheny Circle.

The City of Pittsburgh completed Phase 1 of the project in September 2017. The City reduced the one-way roadway (North, East, South, and West Commons) from four travel lanes to two. The project team also added a parking lane and a two-track for cyclists.

In the current phase, Phase 2, the City of Pittsburgh plans to convert the two vehicular travel lanes to one lane in each direction, turning it back into a two-way directional roadway. The intersections of islands will be replaced by slip ramps to get drivers in and out of the circle while improving traffic and biking safety.  

Current intersections will be made into protected intersections, which are common in the Netherlands, to support bicycle movements. Plans also include adding traffic signals at five intersections, both to accommodate vehicles traveling in two directions and improve the bicycle connections into and out of the circle.

All painting and signage will be replaced to bring the roadway up to standard and make it work for the new traffic patterns. The project team will add crosswalks and two flashing warning ‘school zone’ speed limit signs and loading on the corner of the road near Pittsburgh Allegheny K-5 will be prohibited to allow pedestrians to be more visible to drivers and bicyclists.

The project team will focus on transportation investments with plans to create safe and easy to use transportation facilities for all pedestrians, drivers, and bicyclists; support community planning goals; and restore the neighborhood scale. 

Goals of the project include creating a two-directional travel corridor to make for a safer street; removing the outer travel lane to prevent potential conflicts at stop locations; installing bump outs to close the crossing distance for pedestrians, allowing them to be more visible to drivers; maintaining the interior track for cyclists to remove the fear and risk of colliding with vehicles; and connecting bike lanes to existing corridors to improve mobility and safety. New bike lanes will also be added on portions of the four roads adjacent to Allegheny Circle.

The Pittsburgh Bike(+) Plan, the City’s first bike plan in 20 years, was completed in June 2020. Added bicycle lanes as part of the Bike(+) Plan will factor into the Two-Way Conversion project, providing connections to the North Shore Trail and Allegheny Landing, from North Avenue to 6th Street.

The project design for the Two-Way Conversion costs approximately $513,000. It is funded through various City sources such as Bond, PayGo, and the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program. The construction costs approximately $3,200,000: 50% of this is federally funded through the Southwestern Pennsylvania Commission’s Livability through Smart Transportation Program and the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation’s Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Program and 50% is City-funded through Bond and CDBG.

If you are interested in more information about the project, please call the City’s 311 hotline. You can also visit the City’s website and find Allegheny Circle Two-Way Conversion under “Projects” to check out the fact sheet. 

A feedback survey for this project is available online through July 31. 

Related posts:

Northside Bicycle Summit raises key questions about citywide mobility

Allegheny Center, a history of change

Northside Chronicle Town Hall Subscription