Port Authority Decision on BRT Routing

At the November 2017 HPCC Meeting, the Port Authority gathered feedback from Highland Park residents on a set of possible routing options for the end-of-the-line turnaround patterns for the 71A and the proposed Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) Line, which will eventually replace the current 71B. Minutes from the meeting are available here, and will also be published in the December HPCC Newsletter. This meeting was the fourth in a series of meetings on this subject over the course of the past year. A previous blog post outlining more of the history of this process can be found here.

Currently, the 71A and 71B follow this routing pattern:

Current Routes

Based on the feedback gathered at the November meeting further technical technical assessments, the Port Authority has decided to leave the routing basically unchanged, except that they plan to eliminate the occasional layover of buses on Mellon Terrace:

Port Authority Final Route

As mentioned above, the Port Authority made this determination based on a combination of technical and engineering considerations, as well as the survey responses from the meeting, in which 68% of attendees preferred the current routing, and 32% preferred one of several other alternatives.

Now that they have made a determination on routing, the Port Authority will move on to more detailed design work around bus stops and shelters, and will be returning to Highland Park for another presentation on these issues in spring 2018. The Port Authority representatives who attended the November Meeting have also assured the HPCC that all of the safety concerns expressed at the meeting, including buses not stopping at all stop signs, honking unnecessarily, and idling outside of designated areas were reported to the Port Authority Safety team.

Thank you to all who participated in this process, and to the Port Authority for working with the HPCC to ensure residents had an opportunity to give input on this important issue. If you have any questions, please contact HPCC President Jake Pawlak at jacob.pawlak@gmail.com

HPCC November Meeting 11/16/17: Discussion of Route Options for Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) Project

Hello Neighbors!

At the November HPCC Community Meeting, which will be held at 7pm on Thursday, November 16th at St. Andrew’s Church, the Port Authority and City Department of Mobility and Infrastructure will be gathering feedback from Highland Park residents on possible changes to the end-of-the-line turnaround patterns of the 71A and the proposed Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) line. This will be the fourth in a series of community meetings in Highland Park to discuss the BRT proposal, and our last opportunity to weigh in on the route component of the project.

In March, the HPCC was the first organization to host a Community Meeting to discuss the proposed BRT project. Based in part on positive feedback received at that meeting, the Port Authority, City, and other partners chose to move ahead with a BRT proposal that included a branch serving Highland Park, replacing the route of the current 71B. You can read more about that meeting and the proposal in the March and April editions of the HPCC newsletter.

As initially proposed, the BRT Highland Park Branch would follow the exact same route of the 71B; however at a subsequent workshop held at Union Project in June, a group of residents asked that the Port Authority evaluate the possibility of adjusting the end-of-the-line turnaround pattern to reduce bus traffic on N. Euclid and N. St. Clair. In response to that request, the Port Authority produced 2 alternate route options, which were released at the October HPCC Community Meeting. A copy of the current route and the 2 alternate options is available here and at the bottom of this post.

At the November HPCC Meeting, the Port Authority and City will be seeking feedback from the community on whether Highland Park Residents prefer to keep the current turnaround pattern, or would prefer one of the 2 alternate options. As part of this presentation, we will also be discussing location options for where buses layover at the end of the line, including the possible construction of a small building containing a restroom for bus drivers.

Please join us for this important discussion! Once again, the meeting will be held at 7pm on Thursday, November 16th at St. Andrew’s Church. If you have any questions, please contact HPCC president Jake Pawlak at jacob.pawlak@gmail.com.

Current RoutesSmall LoopsTwo Way

Update Regarding Highland Park Reservoir #1

Hello Neighbors!

This afternoon PWSA released a notice (avilable here) regarding an Administrative Order that has been issued by the PA Department of Environmental Projection (DEP) concerning several critical improvements to our public drinking water system.

One of the items included in the Administrative Order will require PWSA to bring the Highland Park Reservoir #1 (the open air reservoir in the middle of the park) back online. PWSA has been bypassing the Reservoir since February as a result of low chlorine levels that prompted a precautionary flush and boil advisory.
The order requires PWSA to either:
  1. install an ultraviolet light (UV) disinfection system within the Microfiltration Plant (the red brick building connected to the reservoir), or
  2. Cover the reservoir, similar to Highland Park Reservoir #2 (the covered reservoir adjacent to One Wild Place, Mellon Street, and Mellon Terrace).
DEP has given PWSA until November 30th to prepare and submit a plan in response to the Administrative Order. PWSA has indicated in the notice below that it is their intention to pursue the UV disinfection option, which would allow the reservoir to remain uncovered. This is consistent with the approach that PWSA discussed at a community meeting earlier this year.
The HPCC is in communication with PWSA and will continue to monitor this situation and keep the community informed. Stay tuned to the listserv, our website, and our facebook page for further updates. I’d like to thank PWSA, Councilwoman Gross, and the Mayor’s office for working with us on this important issue.
Jake Pawlak
HPCC President

HPCC October Community Meeting

Please join us for the October Community Meeting of the Highland Park Community Council, which will be held at 7pm next Thursday, 10/19, at St. Andrews. The City Department of Mobility and Infrastructure and the Port Authority will be providing an update on the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) project, and as always, we’ll also receive an update from Zone 5 Police.
Hope to see you next week!