PITTSBURGH - More than 60 percent of Pittsburgh’s 866 miles of asphalt streets need repaving, according to Mayor Bill Peduto. However, the cash-strapped city can only afford minimal repairs.
Speaking along the pothole-infested Brookline Boulevard on Wednesday, Peduto said the city can only afford to pave 27 miles of streets in 2014.
“It’s just ridiculous. Something needs to be done,” driver Matt Klayko said. “You have to drive like 2 mph over (potholes on Brookline Blvd.). It’s been this way for months.”
Peduto blamed the bad street conditions on years of neglect driven by chronic lack of funding.
According to Peduto, the city has improved its response time to pothole complaints, but described the repairs similar to a Band-Aid.
“This happens because of years of neglect. It will take several years to get it back where we need to get it,” Peduto said.
The city is in the process of finalizing the list of roads to be paved, but Target 11’s Rick Earle has learned that in addition to Brookline Blvd., Negley Run and Collins and Center avenues in East Liberty are on the list.
Peduto said the city decided which roads to pave by complaints to the 311 hotline.
The neighborhoods that reported the most potholes were Brookline (489), East Liberty (396), Shadyside (389) and Bloomfield (347).
Pittsburgh is partnering with Carnegie Mellon University to develop a system for evaluating street conditions using vehicle-mounted cameras and computer programming. Peduto hopes to implement it this year.
“We will have more date, more information to support the reason and the justification why we are paving a particular street,” Guy Costa said.
Peduto is asking drivers to be patient, because he said the program will take about five years to turn things around.
Channel 11’s news exchange partners at TribLIVE contributed to this report.