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Sun Sep 23, 2012, 10:53 PM

What is morning Traffic like in the Downtown Pittsburgh area?

As I have written My wife goes down to Pittsburgh on Tuesday for Federal Grand Jury selection. She needs to be there for 8 am I have gotten us a reservation at a hotel on McKnight Road. google directions say it is about 10 minutes from the spot we need to be. She wants to get there for 7:30 so she can get through the check points.

1) About what time should we leave the hotel to make sure we aren't delay too long by rush hour traffic?


2) Wife isn't good with big city traffic and I am driving her there and well need to kill time while she is in the building. Anyone know of anything to do around the Grant street area? I heard that a library is near by? I was hoping I could take my kindle there and read for a while.

3) also anywhere cheap for lunch?


Please keep your fingers crosss that wife is not picked.

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Arrow 11 replies Author Time Post
Reply What is morning Traffic like in the Downtown Pittsburgh area? (Original post)
diabeticman Sep 2012 OP
karmaqueen Sep 2012 #1
mrmpa Sep 2012 #2
diabeticman Sep 2012 #5
happyslug Sep 2012 #8
Pat Riot Sep 2012 #9
mrmpa Sep 2012 #10
blue neen Sep 2012 #3
appleannie1 Sep 2012 #4
diabeticman Sep 2012 #7
karmaqueen Sep 2012 #6
femmocrat Sep 2012 #11

Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Sun Sep 23, 2012, 11:17 PM

1. My Replies are not showing up..

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Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Sun Sep 23, 2012, 11:18 PM

2. I would leave at 6:45 a.m................

Are you dropping her off & then parking & going back? Where are you planning on parking? Once I know I can give you some more info.

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Response to mrmpa (Reply #2)

Sun Sep 23, 2012, 11:21 PM

5. Our first location is U.S. Steel Tower I figure I'd park and walk with her there. It is a block

away from the building and I'm thinking of her health--lungs are still weak from an illness.

The second option is Grant Street which is about 11th street and 4 min walk

The third is smithfield and 6th on Smith field a 5 min walk.


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Response to diabeticman (Reply #5)

Mon Sep 24, 2012, 11:11 AM

8. Some information on the downtown Pittsburgh Subway

If you take the T. it has four stops, First Avenue, Grant Street/Steel Plaza, Wood Street and Gateway center. The closest to the Federal Courthouse is Grant Street/Steel Plaza.

The Grant Street/Steel Plaza stop has both elevators and escalators. You have to look for the Elevators, it is restricted to handicap people, but one exists at Grant Street/Steel Plaza.

When the subway first opened, you could have taken a side line to the Pennsylvania Station and then walked to the Old Post Office Building (Which contains the Federal Courts) on Grant street. The line stills exists, and some people have plans for it, but no LRVs have run on it for over 20 years.

Today, you have to exit the Subway at the Grant Street Exit (the Second stop AFTER crossing the Monongahela River). You have the option of three exits, the first is onto Grant Street, the Second is up a fleet of stairs to Sixth Avenue.

The Grant Street/Steel Plaza stop has three exits. You go the escalators to get to all three exits. The first exit is the easiest to describe, you go to the top of the escalator and turn left and follow the hallway to the Grant Street Exit. Once out of the building turn Right (in the Direction of the Allegheny River), cross Sixth Avenue, then go by the US Steel Building, then cross Seventh Avenue, then you are at the US Post Office/US Court Building.

The Sixth Street exit is the opposite direction of the Grant Avenue exit once you are at the top of the escalators. You turn right, go up a flight of stairs onto Sixth, then across Sixth and walk down Sixth to Grant, then turn Right by the US Steel Building, then cross Seventh.

The last exit out of the Grant Street station is the one I would recommend. You go in the direction of the Sixth Avenue exit (i.e. turn Right at the top of the escalators), but instead of going up the stairs to Sixth Avenue, you go down the escalators to the left of the stairs (There is also a flight of stairs down along these escalators). Take the escalators DOWN, and take the Tunnel to the US Steel Building. You avoid having to cross Sixth Street, but you still have to cross Seventh Avenue to get to the Federal Courthouse/Post Office Building. It has a lot of bends and turns, but you will reach another escalator, go up them and exit the US Steel Building. You be on Grant Street, but only have to cross Seventh Avenue to get to the Federal Courthouse.

More on the Grant Street Station/Mellon Center Station/Steel Plaza Station (All three names have been used over the last 20 years):
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steel_Plaza_(PAT_station)

http://pghbridges.com/pittsburghE/0585-4477/panhandle_tun_HAER.htm

I am sorry, driving downtown Pittsburgh is possible, but it is easier by Streetcar (LRV) or bus.

PAT Bus Schedules:
http://www.portauthority.org/paac/SchedulesMaps/TripPlanner.aspx

PAT "Trip Finder":
http://www.portauthority.org/rt/1.pdf

The LRVs/Buses start to run about 5:30 AM.

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Response to diabeticman (Reply #5)

Mon Sep 24, 2012, 11:29 AM

9. Don't park in the Steel Plaza - wicked expensive!

Your second choice of Grant and 11th sounds better. That's the Greyhound/Trailways bus station, where there are actually two garages, the red and the blue. Don't get mixed up and try to pay for the one in the other's pay station.

Happyslug's idea of the subway stops are your cheapest option and probably best for your wife's condition as far as elevators and all, but the Burgh is not easy to find one's way around the first time. I would suggest a dry run today at a non rush hour time.

The library is on 7th Ave, not too far down from the Steel Building. (Now UPMC but everyone still calls it the Steel building.)

I'd be happy to help you, will private message you. There are plenty of inexpensive little lunch places around.

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Response to diabeticman (Reply #5)

Mon Sep 24, 2012, 03:11 PM

10. My suggestion

The library is @ 612 Smithfield St.

I would suggest dropping your wife off at the Courthouse & then parking in the Smithfield & 6th Garage, because from here you walk UP to the Courthouse. Walking DOWN to Smithfield might be easier for your wife.

My suggestion for a good & reasonably priced lunch, (link below) was actually a suggestion by my brother. He says they serve a very good lunch, and the profits go the church. While you're at the Church you could look through their historical burial grounds and see the names of some early Pittsburghers. There is also a burial site for a Native American Chief from the 1700's. I'm a history buff, not religious, it is a remarkably wonderful example of architecture.

Let us know how your day goes. Enjoy Pittsburgh, I do every day.
http://www.ourdailybreadpgh.org/

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Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Sun Sep 23, 2012, 11:19 PM

3. There is quite a bit of road construction in the greater Pittsburgh area.

You may be better off to consult with Triple A or check the Penndot website for updates.

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Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Sun Sep 23, 2012, 11:19 PM

4. At that time of the morning it will take more than 10 minutes to get into town from McKnight Road.

You will have bumper to bumper traffic the whole way. And you never know when there will be a fender bender. There are a lot of restaurants in and around the Grant Street area and many have a menu posted outside. If I were you, I would scope out parking garages the night before also and if you have never driven in Pgh. , be aware that many of the streets are one way.

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Response to appleannie1 (Reply #4)

Sun Sep 23, 2012, 11:27 PM

7. My wife has done some research.

The one I'm looking at is the one a block from the building. I'm looking at the ones within a 5 min walk from the court house.

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Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Sun Sep 23, 2012, 11:27 PM

6. Figured it out!

I wrote a long reply about traffic and food and posted it and nothing showed up. Forgot to put a title! Glad someone else is helping because i do not live there anymore but visit family & friends.. I just know working family say traffic is horrible..Good food is everywhere in Pittsburgh. We like the Mom & Pops and everyone seems to like the Primanti Brothers. If you get to the South Side get a Pretzel at the Pretzel shop, best in the world! Good Luck and fingers crossed your wife doe not get picked..

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Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Mon Sep 24, 2012, 10:18 PM

11. Hoping and praying she does not get picked.

"They" have no idea what people have to go through to go to a jury selection, especially folks from outlying areas.

You even have to pay for a hotel! That is outrageous. I really feel for you both. I'm so glad that DUers can help you out with some of the logistics.

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