Father Pitt

Map of Pittsburgh Rapid Transit

Posted in Transit by Dr. Boli on January 28, 2009

Update: Here is old Pa Pitt’s most recent map of Pittsburgh rapid transit:

Click on the image for a PDF copy.

The article below is kept here for historical reasons, but the map below is out of date.

Public transit, like everything else in Pittsburgh, is wonderfully confusing. We have buses, busways, streetcars or trolleys, inclines, and subways (the main one where the streetcars run downtown, as well as a subway for the streetcars in Mount Lebanon, a transit tunnel for buses and streetcars under Mount Washington, and a long tunnel on the West Busway).

For our purposes, “rapid transit” means what the Port Authority bureaucrats call “fixed-guideway systems,” meaning transit that runs on rails or on its own dedicated track. Streetcars or trolleys (the terms are interchangeable here) sometimes run on the street with the rest of the traffic, but they have their own rails. Busways are high-speed tracks for buses that work like subways, with infrequent stations rather than a stop on every corner. Inclines go from down to up or up to down.

If you prowl around the Port Authority’s Web site long enough, you can find maps of most of these things. But you can’t find a map that tells you how much fun you can have. Here’s where old Pa Pitt steps in with a map that shows you how to use rapid transit to get to some of Pittsburgh’s main attractions.

The obvious missing piece in our transit system is a rapid-transit line to Oakland, the intellectual heart of Pittsburgh. Bus service from downtown to Oakland is frequent, but many people refuse to ride buses who would ride rapid transit. There is, however, good reason to hope that the omission will be corrected soon. Meanwhile, here is a map of the otherwise excellent system we do have. Click on the image to download the map in PDF form.

Click on the image to download the map in PDF format.

Click on the image to download the map in PDF format.

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9 Responses

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  1. The Highland Building « Father Pitt said, on February 2, 2009 at 7:13 pm

    [...] Like everything else in the central business district of East Liberty, the Highland Building is a short walk from the East Liberty Station on the East Busway. [...]

  2. 150 Years of Light Rail « Father Pitt said, on February 6, 2009 at 11:44 pm

    [...] that Pittsburghers had been clamoring for since the turn of the twentieth century or before. But  “light rail” service in one form or another has been continuous since before the Civil War, which is an enviable record [...]

  3. The Kaufmann’s Clock « Father Pitt said, on February 7, 2009 at 7:25 pm

    [...] Macy’s is a short stroll from the Grant Street exit of the Steel Plaza subway station. [...]

  4. [...] The Courthouse is half a block south on Grant Street from the Grant Street exit of the Steel Plaza subway station. [...]

  5. [...] The Union Trust Building is just across the street from the Grant Street exit of the Steel Plaza subway station. [...]

  6. [...] Pitt has already offered one map of Pittsburgh rapid transit. That one was meant to show the attractions along the way. This new map is an attempt at a [...]

  7. [...] (Map image and PDF of Map courtesy of Father Pitt) [...]

  8. Cynthia McKee said, on May 14, 2011 at 11:11 pm

    So I guess there is no such thing as a functional system map. This proves most sad for those of us who actually want to KNOW where we are going instead of being hearded like cattle. Thanks for trying I guess.

  9. Captain Invincible said, on March 20, 2012 at 3:32 pm

    Pittsburgh deserves a world-class subway system.

    I hope Pittsburgh will finally get one in the 21st century.

    The Burgh has some of the world’s most beautiful urban topography, but getting around town…. !

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