Streetfilms Pittsburgh: A look at the city of Bridges
Streetfilms recently made a stop in Pittsburgh, also known as the “steel city” or “the city of bridges”. They took a look at recent efforts to reestablish walking and bicycling as viable modes of transportation and also create more public spaces for people to enjoy. I must admit to having a view of Pittsburgh as a bastion of urban decay nestled in the rust belt. But having older infrastructure has advantages. Pittsburgh was built around walking and streetcars and apparently never completely succumbed to the rise of the automobile. The “Smoky City” is smoky no more, has an enviously low crime rate, and has been ranked the most livable city in the US by multiple surveys including several by The Economist.
This short film, which focuses on walking and bicycling amenities, shows recent improvements such as a new European style piazza downtown and innovative secured bicycle parking using remodeled shipping containers. Challenges were noted, such as the ever present gripe about potholes, this time voiced by a cyclist, and creating connections to the city’s trail network for the “last mile” of a cyclist’s journey. One interesting little nugget came from a cyclist who actually listed Pittsburgh’s hills as a plus for cyclists. “The hills and the little neighborhoods are amazing”. Perhaps America’s most livable city has something to teach the rest of us?
This seven minute film is worth a look.