Rock Alley Action Team: Meeting with Justin Miller


Meeting Minutes: Friday, January 6th, 2012


Attendance: Dave Panasiuk, Justin Miller, Phil Garrow, Samuel Su, Wanda Wilson


1. Recap the history of the site/our goals

a. The engineering company that we spoke to wants us to determine if we have the right of way.
b. If we are able to find out this information, the engineering firm may be able to do the feasibility study at a lower price.
c. Phil stated that Steve Patchen was confident that local funding could be found (even for non-ADA compliant trails)

2. Justin’s comments on our Rock Alley project

a. Believes the lighting and safety issue will not be a problem with PennDot or the City
b. The sewer lines/electrical lines also should not be an issue (Schenley Park trails have these lines as well)
c. It will not cost anything to vacate the streets; it is just a process that we have to go through
d. We do not have to worry about determining the right of way or vacating the streets as of now. This is a simple legal issue for later.
e. There should not be an issue with obtaining “permission” for a feasibility study from the City, but once the study comes back, the City will want to review the engineers’ recommendations.
f. We will still try to obtain an email or letter from the City that states it is okay to pursue the feasibility study (“If there are any obstacles or objections, please let us know now.”)
g. City Planning will act as a facilitator for the project to other City departments.
h. Utilize Pat Hassett as a resource for connecting with PennDot and Southwestern Pennsylvania Commission (SPC).

3. Discussion of other trail connection projects: BRADY STREET

a. Brady Street (see
b. PennDot would lease the parking lot on this route and fence off parking spaces
c. Link this project with Oakcliffe Housing Club, OPDC/Oakland 2025, and Uptown Partners to create a strong base of support.
d. Speak to Councilman Lavelle’s office to put this on his radar for budget hearings. Try to schedule a presentation of our projects with Lavelle’s office. Justin’s contact at Lavelle’s office is Karen Fitch. Harry Johnson is Oakcliffe Housing Club @ OPDC usual connection.
e. Justin’s comments: He is in favor of the Brady Street project and wants to help us make this connector happen. Brady Street may be a better bike trail candidate than Rock Alley. Rock Alley may want to focus more on feet/pedestrian traffic.

4. Discussion of other trail connection projects: HODGE STREET

a. Hodge Street (see
b. Justin’s comments: The street will not be too high on the list for paving, but rather, it will be a possible candidate for closing this street. Replacing the wooden staircase may not be too high on the city’s priorities since there are many other staircases in the city with higher traffic volume. Speak to DPW.

5. Our priorities

a. Establish the RFP
b. Prioritize our Rock Alley projects: 1) Greenway Pedestrian Trail Connector. 2) Brady/2nd Ave. Bike Trail Connector.
c. Continue reaching out for a Oakland Trail & Greenspace Committee.
d. Explore funding sources & finding someone to spearhead/identify funding sources
e. Fundraising workshop with OPDC
f. See what we need with DPW. Invite someone from Pat Hassett’s office (DPW) to Rock Alley Meetings