PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – The Port Authority is planning to stop service on a stretch of the T for at least six months.
Crews need that time to reconstruct part of the Red Line and thousands of riders will be impacted.
Last night, hundreds of people showed up for a community meeting in Beechview about the Port Authority’s plan.
“This is an interactive meeting. It’s sort of an open house style forum and people had the opportunity to talk directly with the contractor of the project, to talk with the Port Authority project team and ask all their individual questions about their homes, businesses and get specific answers,” Port Authority Spokesman Jim Ritchie said.
The closure of a stretch of the Red Line will begin on March 27 and last for about six months.
Crews will be replacing the embedded tracks and street pavement in the center lanes of Broadway Avenue.
With 12,000 daily riders, many are worried that the project will cause major disruptions.
“We’ve changed this project to meet the community concerns in Beechview. We’re now doing this project in phases, we’re not doing all of Broadway Avenue all at once and we’re doing that directly as a result of what we’ve heard from the community,” Ritchie said.
At the meeting, the details of the project seemed to be overshadowed by frustrations from people living in the neighborhood.
“They told us there was going to be a presentation, there is no presentation. They came here tonight with 50 bags to hand out, there’s at least 200 people here,” Pete Wagner said.
Some were upset because of the format of the meeting.
They wanted more of a town hall and instead, the Port Authority set up stations where people could ask individual, specific questions.
“I’m very disappointed, very disappointed in the way this was handled. I hope that the Port Authority will rectify things,” one woman said.
“It’s very, very disappointing that they don’t have the guts to come to Beechview and meet with the people,” Wagner said.
Several Port Authority representatives were at the meeting.