PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — After years of planning and millions of dollars, the North Shore Connector project finally opened to the public in Downtown Pittsburgh and on the North Shore Sunday.

It was the public’s first chance to visit the Port Authority’s new Gateway Station and to ride on the $523 million North Shore Connector.

Most reactions were positive to the new 1.2 mile light rail line, which runs through two tunnels under the Allegheny River to connect downtown and the North Shore.

“It’s very limited, but yeah, for a lot of people this can be very good for them,” said Rob Ocampo, a North Shore Connector passenger.

“I think it will be beneficial,” added Rick Faust, another passenger. “A lot of people complained about it the cost, and is it really worth it? But, I think, for the North Side – connecting town and the North Side – it will be beneficial for both.”

The Allegheny River is about 25-feet deep and the tunnel is 20 feet under the river.

“There’s no cell service down there, but it is exciting to go under the water then to come out near Heinz Field,” said Robin Kear, a passenger.

The first stop is at the underground station at the garage near PNC Park. The T comes out at Heinz Field to a stop near the Carnegie Science Center and the Rivers Casino.

“It’s nothing to walk to the Science Center, Heinz Field now, and even the casino is closer than I expected,” said passenger Wendy Kowalksi.

“I think it will do a lot with the traffic and the situations around here,” added Ed Hammill, another passenger. “Hopefully, it will bring more people to town.”

Also, people who use the North Shore Connector can ride for free for the next three years.

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