Greenfield Bridge Closing: 5 Things You Need to Know

The 94-year-old span is going to go out with a bang at the end of the year, but it's closing for good this weekend.

Pittsburgh's bridge "that needs to wear a diaper," as PittGirl so eloquently put it five years ago, is about to be replaced. 

That's good news for thousands of Parkway East drivers who travel underneath it and probably wonder if some of the crumbling concrete is going to fall through the nets and platform below and ding their car, or worse. It's bad news for a whole lot of people and businesses who depend on the bridge's connection between Schenley Park and Greenfield. Nevertheless, at 94 years of age, the bridge's time has come.
 

The Timetable

  • The bridge will close to vehicular traffic at 10 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 16. Pedestrians and bicyclists will be able to use it until noon on Sunday, Oct. 18.  
  • It's expected to take 18 months to build the replacement bridge. 
     

Updates

  • The bridge project has it own website to keep everyone up-to-date on progress and any changes to detour routes. 
     

PAT Buses

  • Port Authority Transit Routes including the 52L Homeville Limited / 53L Homestead Park Limited / 58 Greenfield / 93 Lawrenceville-Oakland-Hazelwood have already been rerouted off the bridge. Click here for the new routes. 
     

Parkway Closures

This is where it gets interesting.

  • The Parkway East will close in both directions for two weekends as workers take down as much of the bridge as possible. Those weekends have yet to be determined.
     
  • The Parkway East will close for five days after Christmas so that what's left of the bridge can be imploded and the debris cleaned up.
     

The Party

To mark the passing of this architectural and community icon, as the Mayor's office describes it, the Greenfield Bridge Rock Away the Blues Bridgefest is set for 4 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 17.

In a statement, the Mayor's office says: "The Bridgefest is intended to raise awareness of the local businesses impacted by the two year loss of the Greenfield Bridge, a critical artery for the Greenfield community and its markets. In collaboration with the business owners, the event proceeds will be used to promote and support the community and its business districts while the new bridge is under construction."

The lineup includes Joe Grushecky and the Houserockers headlining the evening stage and Pittsburgh’s country rockers NOMaD in the afternoon. I Made It! Market will have a presence as well as Greenfield businesses, restaurants and local food trucks. The event is family friendly, free and open to the public. Event details can be found here.

––Richard Cook
 


 


photo via flickr creative commons

 

#Preservation: Kaufmann's and Macy's artifacts

September marked the final curtain close on the former Macy’s department store in downtown Pittsburgh. Core Realty of Philadelphia bought the building for $15 million and plans to redevelop the space to include new retail shops, a hotel and more than 300 apartments.

While the store is gone, some of what's inside is being preserved. 

Upon the request of Mayor Peduto, anything of historical value in the Macy’s archives will be donated to the Smithsonian Institute’s Pittsburgh residence, The Sen. John Heinz History Center. This includes pieces from Kaufmann’s holiday displays, the Tic Toc Restaurant and more.

“I am pleased on behalf of Pittsburgh residents that Macy’s is working with us to honor the deep importance the Kaufmann’s artifacts have to the history and culture of our city,” Mayor Peduto said in a statement.

Sure, most Pittsburghers have a fond connection for Kaufmann’s, but it’s hard to gauge the “true” sentiment Pittsburghers have towards the Macy’s closing.

Since early summer, #GoodbyeMacys exploded on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Au Revoirs included heartfelt memories, a few bitter hallelujahs and some pretty creepy photos of liquidation stockrooms filled with naked mannequins.

Macy's has also agreed to transfer the rights to the Tic Toc and Arcade Bakery to the Pittsburgh Urban Redevelopment Authority in hopes the names will be incorporated into the new development. 

––Lauralei Kraski


 


photo courtesy of University of Pittsburgh Swanson School of Engineering

 

#Hail to University of Pittsburgh Bioengineering Professor for Prestigious Namesake

With a list of publications and awards as long as Forbes Avenue, Pittsburgh bioengineer Savio L-Y. Woo, Ph.D now has an award named after him.

In September, the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) honored Dr. Woo’s accomplishments with the creation of the ASME Savio L-Y. Woo Translational Biomechanics Medal, which will be a awarded to ASME members who have translated laudable bioengineering science to clinical practice.

Be it through contributions in research, education, development or other service to the bioengineering community, the award recognizes the same outstanding passion and expertise as exhibited by Dr. Woo’s own career.

A Distinguished University Professor of Bioengineering in the University of Pittsburgh's Swanson School of Engineering, Dr. Woo also founded and directs of the Musculoskeletal Research Center (MSRC) at Pitt. His work in tissue healing and robotics has gained him international recognition.

But research is not the end all-be all for Dr. Woo. One night in 1998, Dr. Woo traded a lab coat for a tux at a black-tie ceremony celebrating his winning an Olympic Gold medal for sports science at the 1998 XVIII Winter Olympics in Nagano, Japan.

At the awards ceremony, Dr. Woo thanked his students.

“Your calling me a good teacher is very important to me — for merely being labeled as a good researcher would be my greatest disappointment.”

––LK

 

Categories: The 412