PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Two-way traffic is returning to busy East Carson Street on the South Side.
Pittsburgh Public Safety is ending its traffic pilot program which reduced traffic flow during some of the busiest nights of the week.READ MORE: Big Traffic Changes Coming To East Carson Street Following Triple Shooting
The goal was to ease congestion, improve pedestrian safety and cut down on violence.
The city says they have seen several positive improvements. So, starting Friday night, traffic will go back to the way it was.
In a statement, city Public Safety Director Wendell Hissrich said, “The Department of Public Safety is pleased with the progress that has been made to increase safety on the South Side. As promised, we engaged in regular discussions with residents and businesses during this time to share ideas on the impact and effectiveness of the pilot program and the stepped-up enforcement. We thank everyone for their patience and participation in this effort. It wasn’t always easy to balance competing needs, but we are grateful for the partnerships that helped make this happen.”
However, they do still plan to enforce the “no parking” zones on Fridays and Saturdays after 8 p.m. between South 10th and South 18th streets.
In addition, police say their increased presence in the area over the last four weekends has resulted in 12 arrests, one firearms-related arrest, one firearm seizure, 371 citations and towed 69 vehicles.READ MORE: Pittsburghers Have Mixed Reactions To Weekend Traffic Restrictions On East Carson Street
One worker told KDKA’s Royce Jones that they did see crime go down but so did their business and tips.
“More August than July, that money definitely took a hit,” said Nicole Macedo, a bartender at Smiling Moose. “It was very slow. We even closed the restaurant a couple of weekends by like 12, 1 o’clock.”
For tattoo artist Sean McCarthy, the traffic and parking restrictions have left a mark on business at Jester’s Court Tattoos.
“On Fridays and Saturdays, we always stay later for the walk-in crowd, which has been devastated,” McCarthy said.
Workers KDKA spoke with are excited about the restrictions ending and hopeful business will tick back up. But they also are curious if crime will stay down.
“It could make it worse because it’s like everybody is going to go crazy again because we all know how South Side can be,” Vault general manager Jasmine Underwood said.