Putting the Public in Public Transit

The following video was made by Dean Mougianis. It highlights the importance of public transit and some of the work PPT has done.

“When people work together they have power, and that power can solve problems that seem insurmountable. This is a story about one such problem – inadequate public transportation, and a group of people who are solving that problem one neighborhood at a time.”- Dean

 

Save the Date: Bus Service Celebration on October 8th!

Penn Hills and Garfield Photo

IT’S TIME TO PARTAYYYY!

Please join us on Saturday Oct 8 to celebrate getting increased bus service in Garfield and Penn Hills! After a year long resident-led campaign, the 89 will now run on weekends in Garfield. The 79 will run all day and on weekends along the current P17 route. WE DID IT!

Residents worked hard to advocate for this service, and riders are thrilled to have these much needed connections to jobs, school, shopping, events, medical appointments, places of worship, and more. Thanks to all who helped make this happen!We know more communities still need service, and we look forward to keeping up the fight.

Residents will ride Route 89 from Garfield and Route 79/82 from Penn Hills to attend the celebration at the Kelly Strayhorn Theater lobby. Supporters are invited to join us on the bus or at the theater. We’ll have refreshments, a short film, and featured speakers! 

Garfield riders: meet at 9:20 am at Fern and Mossfield St to take the 89 to East Liberty
Penn Hills riders: meet at 9:10 am at Mark and Calmar to take the 79 (which becomes the 82). Or you can hop on the 79 from the Giant Eagle .
All supporters: please join us at the celebration! you all helped make this possible, and we encourage you to come celebrate with us!

The event is cohosted by Pittsburghers for Public Transit, the Bloomfield Garfield Corporation, the Lincoln Park Community Center, and the Kelly Strayhorn Theater

For more information, contact Pittsburghers for Public Transit:

info@pittsburghforpublictransit.org

412-216-9659

Battle of Homestead Presentation: Present Day Issues, Future Possibilities

Battle of Homestead_Panel

On Saturday, August 19th, the Battle of Homestead Foundation hosted a panel of organizations and individuals working on improving public transit in Pittsburgh. PPT director Molly Nichols and Garfield resident and leader Debra Short both spoke at the panel, as well as Kathryn Schlesinger from the Pittsburgh Community Reinvestment Group and Gerry Strutt, bus driver and member of the Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU) Local 85.

The panel took place at the historic Pump House, the location of the Battle of Homestead Strike in 1892. Union workers at the steel mill bravely attempted to hold back hundreds of Pinkerton guards hired by Frick and Carnegie to break up the strike. After a bloody fight in which seven workers were killed, the National Guard was called in, quelling the protests. This critical moment helped galvanize the Labor Movement in Pittsburgh and nationally.

Transit is deeply connected with many struggles today–labor, environmental, racial, economic, and it was moving to hear this presentation in a building with such a powerful history.

The event began with a video introduction created by Dean Mougianis. which showed the work and successes of PPT’s campaigns over the past year. It highlighted the ways community involvement and activism created direct change and improved the lives of residents. Molly talked about current transit in the region and how it affects low income and especially black and immigrant families. She discussed the importance of having affordable housing near transit lines, laying the framework for the event: access to transit as a human rights and equity issue.

Debra shared her experiences working to mobilize Garfield residents on this issue. She talked about the overwhelmingly positive community response and how quickly people came together. She shared how the efforts of the community paid off, ending encouragingly by saying, “we can do this everywhere.” Gerry added his perspective as a driver, highlighting the intersections between labor and transit, and pointing to the need for interconnected campaigns. Kathryn tied the pieces together and provided a policy and research perspective on the issue with emphasis on creating better connections to current transit service on the busway and the T.

Many members of the audience expressed their support of the work PPT does and shared the importance of accountability in public processes–pointing to the urgent need for increased transit and access to affordable housing in the city.

Battle of Homestead_audience

Please visit Battle of Homestead Foundation for more info: http://battleofhomestead.org/battle.php

PPT video introduction (created by Dean Mougianis):