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Thursday, May 3, 2012

SouthSide Works Plaza Opening, Bike Corrals

05/03/12 21m
Rode 21 miles, 88F. I'm ready for that "reversion to norm" thing with the high temps.

Big day for bicycling in Pittsburgh, several items of good news. The most immediate item of good news was the opening of the SouthSide Works (SSWx) Riverside Plaza, which permits the bike trail to pass along the river behind the American Eagle Outfitters corporate campus and HofBrau Haus.

(Except we're not supposed to refer to that location as SouthSide any more, we're supposed to call it the South Shore. Just like no more NorthSide, call it North Shore. Jagoffs, Jack Shore, whatever.)

This is a photo of SouthSide Workx Plaza while the first band was warming up, before the crowd started to build:

It was a cool opening event. HofBrau Haus was giving away pretzels and beer!, WYEP had two great bands playing, Mayor Luke Ravenstahl made an appearance. (okay, two out of three). Lots of people with well behaved dogs and kids; a really wide range of folks. Several members of the Pittsburgh Police bike squad were on hand.

The recent Bike Expo featured a bicycle-powered fruit smoothie maker, but today's event had bicycle-powered spin art machines, very nice:

The new plaza opening couldn't come at a better time. Until this was open, the trail had a multi-year kludge detour onto the "Tunnel Park", which nobody ever knew about. Two problems: lots of bicycles on the sidewalk outside of American Eagle Outfitters, and the Tunnel Park is about to be excavated and embiggened so they can widen the Panama Canal. Amazing.

We are uncertain as to the effect of the Tunnel Park excavation on the Saturday 10:00 Yoga-in-the-Park classes.

In other Pittsburgh bicycling news, paint striping and installation were started on the first three "parking corrals" aka "parking swaps" in which two car parking spots are re-purposed as on-street parking for 24 bicycles. Very leading edge.

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