Public Safety temporarily pauses South Side traffic plans during building demolition

PITTSBURGH — In recent weeks, the City of Pittsburgh Department of Public Safety implemented a pilot project on the South Side to address mounting concerns regarding overcrowding, increased violence, and pedestrian safety on and around East Carson Street.

However, due to a partial building collapse in the 1600 block of E. Carson Street Thursday night, Public Safety is temporarily halting the project.

Public Safety will be closing E. Carson Street between S.16th and S.17th streets to begin the demolition of 1604 E. Carson. A large crane has been put in the street to begin that process.

During this time, traffic will be diverted around this block. Tractor trailers and longer industrial-type vehicles will need to take the 10th Street Bridge or the Birmingham Bridge.

The primary intent of the plan has been to stem the flow of vehicle traffic into the commercial corridor to alleviate some of the density in the area during the busiest evening hours on the weekends.

While the strategy has been largely successful in helping to prevent violence and congestion on East Carson Street, Public Safety has remained in ongoing discussion with business owners who have asked for slight adjustments to ensure ease of access to restaurants and retail stores in the early evening hours.

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With that in mind, Public Safety is making modifications to the times of day during which the measures will be implemented.

Beginning at 9:30 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays, East Carson Street will convert from two-way to one-way traffic traveling eastbound (outbound) between S. 10th and S. 18th. The previous start time was 7:00 p.m.

On Fridays and Saturdays, ‘No Parking’ measures will be strictly enforced on these blocks of East Carson Street starting at 8 p.m., including the towing of vehicles, to keep this stretch clear for Public Safety vehicle access. Signage along East Carson will be clearly marked to reflect the altered parking hours for these days.

Side streets from S.11th to S.17th will remain open to through-traffic until 9:30 p.m., at which time vehicles will be diverted around those streets via either Muriel Street or Sarah Street. In previous weeks, the side streets were closed at 7:00 p.m.

“The only way to ensure the South Side will remain safe and accessible to everyone will be to continue to engage in communication with residents and business owners, working together and truly listening to their needs, balanced with the overall goal of preventing violence. That dialogue will be open and ongoing, and we continue to thank everyone for their patience and cooperation,” said Public Safety Director, Wendell Hissrich.

The pilot project in the South Side will remain in effect for the near future and Public Safety will continue to monitor its impact and effectiveness.