Riders Rally to Stop Cuts, Call for Improvements!

image description: Duquesne worker Kathleen Lynch speaks at the 9/29 rally calling for a BRT system that makes more access, not less. She’s surrounded by PPT Members who hold yellow signs with red text that reads “Transit Moves Us”.

Riders TURNED OUT Friday to speak directly to the board and call for a stop to these cuts. SUPPORT THE CALL for BRT improvements by signing the petition today!

Did you hear? This Friday, PPT members and allies came together to protest proposed service cuts to the 61 and 71 bus routes–and it was absolute fire! We rallied, we marched to the PRT Board meeting, and we testified: these proposed service cuts are unacceptable. They will result in longer wait time, more crowding, and a higher cost to ride for everyone who uses these affected routes. Our members spoke out about their experiences, and how these cuts will disproportionately harm our most vulnerable neighbors–disabled neighbors, elder neighbors, and neighbors without Connect Cards most of all. 

We are so energized and grateful for everyone who supported us in this powerful moment. When we come together and leverage our strength as a community, we can accomplish so much–and Friday’s rally was a testament to that power! 

But this fight isn’t over yet. 

You can support us now by signing our petition. If you think that crowded buses, longer waits, and higher fares on some of our most crucial connecting routes are unacceptable, add your name to the list, and we can make our shared voice even louder. 

Media Round-up!

Photos from the Rally


Sign the petition! Demand that PRT reverses the cuts and creates more access to transit, not less:

Join us for the 2024 Transit Justice Strategy Session!

Image is a cartoon with a little banner on the top left that reads, “Join PPT to brainstorm…” Beneath that is a sparkly speech bubble the reads “The Future of Transit Justice, Wednesday, 10/11 7pm at 1 Smithfield St.” The speech bubble is coming from five people who vary in race and gender.

Register to join us on October 11th to create our 2024 Strategic Plan

Sign the Petition: Demand that PRT Reverse the Cuts!

image description: petition flyer has an image of PPT Member Lorita Gillespie speaking at the September 29th rally to reverse the cuts. Text says “Reverse the Cuts! Sign the petition. Share your story. Major transit changes were implemented October 1st to the 61s, 71s and nearly 40 other routes. Help organize for improvements by taking action now.” with an arrow to a QR code.

Reverse the cuts! Take action by signing the petition to PRT. We want a rapid transit plan that brings more access, not less.

Major service changes went into effect on October 1st. These changes included major service cuts on the 61D Murray, 71A Negley, 71C Point Breeze, and 71D Hamilton, and changes on nearly 40 other routes. These changes are leading to longer wait times, more crowded buses, and higher fares. No Bus Rapid Transit project should take away service. Riders want Pittsburgh Regional Transit to reverse the cuts and restore our service back!

Sign the petition to reverse the cuts! You can help build a BRT for all.


What are you seeing on the buses? Share your photos and videos with Pittsburghers for Public Transit to advocate for change.

We need to show what is happening on the streets. Has your bus been crowded? Are you missing transfers? Take two minutes to email us your photos and videos so we can build up a library of stories to strengthen our demand for change.

Share to social media with the hashtag #NotMyBRT

Use social media to get the word out about how these changes are impacting you. Use the hashtag #NotMyBRT to we can tell our story.

Changes Are Coming Oct 1! 40 Routes Will Have New Schedules. Read More Here.

image description: photo of a yellow articulated PRT bus in downtown PGH.

Big changes are slated to start October 1st. Learn more in the blog and sign up to make your voice heard.

Throughout the year, PRT makes a number of “service adjustments” to routes throughout the system. These service adjustments are typically minor changes to accommodate for things like construction detours or a stop relocation. But sometimes there are some more major changes included in this list.  Ideally, these adjustments allow PRT to make the schedules as reliabile as possible, but unfortunately, that isn’t often the result. 

The agency announces these changes on their website and social media, but many times riders are left in the dark about ow their schedules are shifting. To try to promote these changes, and translate what they will mean for riders, PPT has been teaming up with the volunteer-run @PGH_Bus_Info_Hotline since 2019 to publish these blogs.

Here’s some information on what changes are slated for October 1st and opportunities to speak up to make your voice heard.

The biggest issues that riders have with this round of changes  are those proposed for the 61D, 71A, 71C, and 71D. These routes will stop servicing Uptown and Downtown, which means riders will lose direct access to homes, hospitals and schools and cash riders will need to pay double.

There are major changes being proposed for the 61D, 71A, 71C, and 71D. These buses will turn around in Oakland and no longer service downtown. PPT and rider advocates have said a lot about these changes since they were announced mid-August. The primary concern about cutting these routes in Oakland means that inbound riders will lose direct access resources in Uptown (like the hospitals and universities), and outbound riders who live in Uptown will lose access to grocery stores and everything else in Oakland, the East End, and Squirrell Hill. Moreover, introducing a mandatory transfer on these routes will mean DOUBLE fare for those paying with cash, and a big uncertainty for any riders transit trip (which is especially hard for riders with mobility impairments). For our rundown of the concerns that we’ve heard about these changes check out this blog.

But there are also a number of other changes slated for this round that could have a big impact for riders. We continue to have issues with how the changes are communicated on PRT’s website. For many changes, PRT just types “Some weekday and weekend trip times have changed”, which sometimes are small shifts that riders won’t notice but sometimes are big changes that reshape riders lives (like the 77 losing a significant amount of weekend evening service in this set of changes). If you are impacted by these changes, we encourage you to share your story with us on our Transit Trouble form, because we need to get organized so we can advocate for improvements.

Reverse the cuts! Take action by signing the petition to PRT. We want a rapid transit plan that brings more access, not less.

About this blog series with the @PGH_Bus_Info Hotline

The @PGH_Bus_Info Hotline is a volunteer-run twitter account that gives riders adjustments on PRT’s daily happenings. The Hotline has no official connection to the PRT (again, it is a volunteer-run twitter account) but the adjustments they provide are helpful nonetheless. The Hotline is a big supporter of PPT, and an enormous advocate for public transit. We’re thankful for their support and happy to collab on these rider resources. Follow @PGH_Bus_Info Hotline on twitter for more grassroots transit adjustments.

About how to read this blog

We take the list of service changes listed on PRT’s website and break them into three categories based on what they mean for riders; “The Good”, “The Bad (The Missed Opportunities)”, “The middle of the road… ¯\_(ツ)_/¯”.

For each change you’ll see the text and link that the PRT uses to describe each change, with a link to the new schedule.  This is copy/pasted from PRT’s website…

Let’s get started.

A Summary of PRT’s Service Changes slated for October 1, 2023

Link to PRT’s list of upcoming service changes.

The good

61A-North Braddock – Some weekday and weekend trip times have changed. Sunday midday frequency increased to 30 minutes from 35 minutes.

  • Increased service is good for those who use these lines. Though we don’t like seeing it come at the expense of the service cuts that are being made as part of the BRT implementation. And the forced transfers make transit less convenient and more unpredictable in terms of travel time. This same comment can be said for the changes being made to the 61B, 71B, 82, 87, P1, P7. 

61B-Braddock-Swissvale – Some weekday and weekend trip times have changed. Sunday midday frequency increased to 30 minutes from 35 minutes.

71B-Highland Park – Additional weekday and weekend trip times have been added and some trip times have changed.

82-Lincoln – Frequency increased to 16 minutes from 20 minutes during the morning and evening peak hours.

87-Friendship – Additional weekday trips have been added and some weekday and weekend trip times have changed.

P1-East Busway-All Stops – Additional weekday trips have been added and some weekday and weekend trip times have changed. Frequency increased to 8 minutes from 12 minutes during the morning and evening peak hours.

P7-McKeesport Flyer – An additional trip was added to the weekday morning and evening peak, increasing frequency to 25 minutes from 30 minutes.

The bad (the missed opportunities)

The 61D-Murray will stop servicing Uptown and Downtown. It will turn around at Robinson Street, turn right onto Craft, and left onto Forbes Avenue. It will be renamed 61D-Murray Short. Additionally, some weekday and weekend trip times are changing. Sunday mid-day frequency will decrease to 30 minutes from 20 minutes.

  • This change makes it harder for people to ride transit because it forces transfers (which makes transit more unpredictable and increases travel time) and it forces double fares for peopel who are paying in cash. And we say this same comment for the 71A, 71C, and 71D changes that are being proposed this round too. You can read details about why riders are against these changes here. More than 100 riders came out the PRT’s meeting last week to speak up, and we’re rallying again on 9/29 before PRT’s board meeting to call for improvements, not cuts: RSVP here to join us. 

The 71A-Negley will stop servicing Uptown and Downtown. It will turn around at Robinson Street and travel outbound in the contraflow lane on Fifth Avenue. It will be renamed the 71A-Negley Short.

The 71C-Point Breeze will stop servicing Uptown and Downtown. It will turn around at Robinson Street and travel outbound in the contraflow lane on Fifth Avenue. It will be renamed the 71C-Point Breeze Short. Additionally, some weekday and weekend trip times have changed.

The 71D-Hamilton will stop servicing Uptown and Downtown. It will turn around at Robinson Street and travel outbound in the contraflow lane on Fifth Avenue. It will be renamed the 71D-Hamilton Short. Additionally, some weekday and weekend trip times have changed.

To streamline and condense schedules, some bus stops have been removed from the online and paper schedules. Those stops will continue to be served.

61C-McKeesport-Homestead – Some weekday and weekend trip times have changed. Sunday morning and evening frequency decreased to 45 minutes from 40 minutes.

  • Service is again being decreased on the 61Cs. The 61Cs have lost a considerable amount of service the start of the pandemic.

2-Mount Royal – The Grant Avenue Bridge detour via Evergreen Road has been made permanent and incorporated into schedules.

Inbound stops Discontinued for 2-Mount RoyalOutbound stops Discontinued for 2-Mount Royal
North at Elizabeth (Stop #1140)Grant at #114 (Stop #1201)
North at Freemont (Stop #1141)Grant at Sheridan (Stop #1202)
North at Grant (Stop #1142)      Grant at Sherman (Stop #1203)
Grant at Black (Stop #22613)Grant at Black (Stop #1204)
Grant at Sherman (Stop #1144)Grant at North (Stop #1205)
Grant opp School (Stop #1145)North at Lincoln (Stop #1206)
Grant at E. Ohio (Stop #1146)North at Elizabeth (Stop #1207)
North at Klopfer (Stop #1208) 
  • The situation in Millvale is not good for transit riders or the community. The 2’s route regularly runs through Millvale’s central business district. Unfortunately, a bridge along that route recently failed inspection and can no-longer safely carry buses. Now, the County, the State, and the Municipality are all at odds about who’s going to pay for the repair and riders are forced to put up with longer walks and continued uncertainty.

    So although its good that the modified route will mean that the buses will show up on some of the real time arrival apps, which will make arrivals more predictable, the big question we have is what stops are going to be added on the detoured portion on Evergreen? Without added stops, people in Millvale have precarious access to transit and they deserve better.

    With the historically high levels of infrastructure funding now available from the Infrastructure Bill, riders deserve to see change quickly. If you live in Millvale or take the 2, please share your Transit Trouble story and help Pittsburghers for Public Transit advocate for change.

77-Penn Hills – Some weekday and weekend trip times have changed. Inbound buses to downtown will travel via Bigelow Boulevard between Sixth and Liberty avenues.

Inbound Stops Discontinued for 77-Penn Hills
Chatham St at Centre Ave (Stop #8585)        
Sixth Ave at Fifth Ave (Stop #18799)
Fifth Ave at Ross St (Stop #20293)  
Fifth Ave at Grant St NS (Stop #17764)
Fifth Ave at Smithfield St (Stop #20691)        
Fifth Ave at Wood St NS (Stop #18800)
Outbound Stops Established for 77-Penn HillsInbound Stops Established for 77-Penn Hills
Liberty Ave at Gateway #4 (Stop #20295)Sixth Ave at Smithfield St (Stop #3158)
 Sixth Ave at Wood St (Stop #3159)
 Liberty Ave at 6th NS (Shelter) (Stop #22256)
  • Their wording is definitely confusing on this change. But what they mean is that the inbound 77s will make a right on on Sixth, a left on Liberty to a new layover point that is being established on Liberty near Gateway T Station. The biggest upside to this is that it’s giving drivers a break at both ends of the route is a quality of life improvement for hard working operators. However, the changes also limit service for riders.  Night service is being scaled back. Weeknights, the last trip will leave downtown before 11pm. Saturday last trip will be 9pm. And Sunday is being scaled back to 8pm. Not to mention that some of the discontinued stops downtown will be a hardship for some riders. Weekday first trips will get a little earlier, which is good.

89-Garfield Commons – Service to Larimer via East Liberty Blvd has been discontinued and replaced with service through Bakery Square and North Point Breeze. Some weekday and weekend trip times have changed.

Inbound Stops Discontinued for 89-Garfield CommonsOutbound Stops Discontinued for 89-Garfield Commons
East Liberty Blvd at Highland FS (Stop #20101)   East Liberty Blvd at Dahlem Pl (Stop #8541)
East Liberty Blvd at Centre Ave (Stop #20100)              East Liberty Blvd at Hamilton Ave (Stop #8542)
East Liberty Blvd at Larimer Ave (Stop #18966)             East Liberty Blvd at Frankstown Ave (Stop #8543)
East Liberty Blvd at Broad St (Stop #9342)   East Liberty Blvd at Larimer Ave (Stop #20096)
East Liberty Blvd opp Hamilton Ave (Stop #8878)                 East Liberty Blvd at Negley Run Blvd (Stop #20097)
East Liberty Blvd opp Dahlem Pl (Stop #8879)East Liberty Blvd at Highland Ave (Stop #9233)
East Liberty Blvd at Penn Ave (Stop #8880)  Penn Ave at Highland Ave (Stop #8882)
Inbound Stops Established for 89-Garfield CommonsOutbound Stops Established for 89-Garfield Commons
Highland Ave at Rippey St (New Stop)Fifth Ave Ramp at Fifth Ave NS (Stop #17765)
Highland Ave at Broad St (Stop #17602)Fifth Ave opp McPherson St FS (Stop #20108)
Penn Ave opp Bakery Square (Stop #8279)Penn Ave at Bakery Square (Stop #18942)
Fifth Ave at Thomas Blvd (Stop #8320)Highland Ave at Station St (Stop #3270)
Fifth Ave at McPherson St (Stop #20016)Highland Ave opp Rippey St FS (New Stop)
Fifth Ave Ramp at Fifth Ave FS (Stop #16029)Highland Ave at Penn Ave FS (New Stop)
Highland Ave at Vintage Senior Citizen Ctr (Stop #8539) 
  • The only impact these changes will make is that riders will only lose access via this route to homes (including the Harriet Tubman Housing facility), the Kinglsey Center, the churches near Larimer Ave & East Liberty Blvd, and other businesses along Larimer Ave, Frankstown Ave, and Hamilton Ave.

P2-East Busway Short – Route will be removed and replaced with additional P1 trips.

  • This route cut will primarily impact riders who live, work, and run errands near the East Busway’s Hays St Ramps stops. These riders will now need to walk further from Wilkinsburg Station or wait longer for the P68 or P78. 

The middle of the road… ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

59-Mon Valley – Some weekday and weekend trip times have changed. Due to the closure of Century III Mall Drive, the route will now terminate at Mountain View Drive at Home Depot. 

  • This entire change was prompted because PRT needs to move the start/end of this route from the long-neglected Century III Mall, which is now condmened. But to do that, PRT chose to stop/start the route at Home Depot on Mountain View Drive, which we think this is a huge missed opportunity because there are a number important destinataions (ALDI, a new UPMC Facility, a new Highmark facility, and others) that we imagine the buses will still be passing by on their way to/from the West Mifflin garage. This either forces riders to walk longer, more dangerous routes (sidewalks are severely lacking there and car speeds are deadly high in a vehicle heavy anti-pedestrian area), or completely severs them from these destinations. We would suggest that the route either starts/ends at Century Drive near the new UPMC/Highmark facilities or service Rt 51 and Lebanon Church Rd on the way back to the garage.

14-Ohio Valley – Some weekday trip times have changed because of rider feedback.

  • This change is a mixed bag. Its good to see that rider feedback being listened to. Although evening service has been restored slightly on weekdays and Saturdays, there are other places where its been dialed back. Sunday ends just before 10pm, Saturday Ends before midnight. Service frequency is abysmal for nights and weekends.

19L-Emsworth Limited – Some weekday trip times have changed.

51-Carrick – Some weekend trip times have changed. Short variant trips to the Brentwood Loop were added on Saturday and Sunday, based on ridership.

  • Good they’re adding short trips, but that doesn’t help people farther out who need the route to access businesses and homes.

54-Northside-Oarkland-South Side – Some weekday and weekend trip times have changed based on a request from the scheduling committee.

  • As a note, PRT should do a better job of explaining what the “scheduling committee” is. Our best description is that its a committee made up of transit operators from the 4 different garages and the scheduling department. They meet regularly to discuss changes to the schedules. Operators who drive these routes have some of the most intimate knowledge about how these routes run. So we’re glad that PRT is taking their input into account. But unfortunately the bad part is some trips have been cut or combined with other trips, which results in some later start times, fewer trips, and longer rider wait times.
    Also, PRT needs to put back the timepoint at West Penn Hospital. Oakland to Bloofmield/Lawrenceville is the busiest part of the entire route, why delete this timepoint that the most riders take advantage of?

58-Greenfield – The Charles Anderson Bridge detour via Bates Street has been incorporated in the schedule.

Inbound Stops Established for 58-GreenfieldOutbound Stops Established for 58-Greenfield
Blvd Of The Allies At Bates (Nearside)Ronald At Beechwood (Existing)
Alger At Winterburn (Existing)   Blvd Of Allies At Bates (Farside)
 Halket At Louisa (Existing)
Inbound Srops Discontinued for 58-GreenfieldOutbound Stops Discontinued for 58-Greenfield
Blvd Of The Allies At JulietPanther Hollow Road At Bartlett (Farside)
Blvd Of The Allies At WardPanther Hollow Road Opp Schenley Park Pool
Blvd Of The Allies At Dawson (Farside)Blvd Of The Allies At Dawson
Panther Hollow At Panther Hollow BridgeBlvd Of The Allies At Ward
Greenfield At Overlook                             Blvd Of The Allies At Bates
Beechwood Blvd (Greenfield) Bridge At Alger 
  • This same comment can be said for the changes slated for the 58, 65 and the 93 listed below. All of these routes have been on detour for months now because the Charles Anderson Bridge recently failed inspection and is currently closed to all traffic, which adds 10-20 minutes depending on Bates St traffic. Adding the detour to the route schedule will improve reliability for riders because the buses will now show up on the Real-Time maps, and establishing stops for these buses now gives riders access within these communities. These changes are PRT trying to make lemonaid out of lemons and we applaud that, and we also hope that politicians can pull down bridge repair money from the new Infrastructure Bill to help get riders moving. 

65-Squirrel Hill – The Charles Anderson Bridge detour via Second Avenue/Greenfield Avenue has been included in the schedule as well as new downtown routing using Liberty Avenue and Seventh Avenue. Additional stops along Greenfield Avenue have been added and some weekday run times have changed.

Inbound Stops Established for 65-Squirrel HillOutbound Stops Established for 65-Squirrel Hill
Blvd of the Allies at Bates FSBlvd of the Allies at Bates NS
Blvd of the Allies at Halket FSGreenfield Ave at Irvine St
Greenfield Ave at Overlook Dr   Greenfield Ave at Sylvan Ave
Greenfield Ave at Winterburn Ave FSGreenfield Ave at #322
Greenfield Ave at Hoosac St FS  Greenfield Ave at Yoder St
Greenfield Ave at Lydia St FSGreenfield Ave Hayworth St
Greenfield Ave opp Kearcher StGreenfield Ave at Kearcher St
Greenfield Ave at Hayworth StGreenfield Ave at Lydia St
Greenfield Ave opp Yoder St FSGreenfield Ave at Hoosac St
Greenfield Ave at Frazier StGreenfield Ave at Winterburn Ave
Greenfield Ave at Second AveRonald St at Beechwood Blvd
Seventh Ave at Smithfield StLiberty Ave at Market St
Liberty Ave at 7th St (Clark Bldg)             Liberty Ave at Wood St
Liberty Ave at 5th Ave   Seventh Ave at William Penn Pl
Liberty Ave at Wyndham Grand HotelLiberty Ave at Gateway #4
Inbound stops Discontinued for 65-Squirrel HillOutbound stops Discontinued for 65-Squirrel Hill      
Panther Hollow at Bartlett FSBlvd of the Allies at Juliet
Panther Hollow opp Schenley Park PoolBlvd of the Allies at Ward
Blvd of the Allies at DawsonBlvd of the Allies at Dawson FS
Blvd of the Allies at WardPanther Hollow at Panther Hollow Bridge FS
Blvd of the Allies at BatesStanwix opp Fourth Ave
Bluff St at Stevenson St Blvd of the Allies at Market St
Stevenson St at Locust StBlvd of the Allies at Wood St
Stevenson St at Forbes AveBlvd of the Allies at Smithfield St
Stevenson St at Fifth Ave 
Fifth Ave at Magee St 
Fifth Ave at Washington Pl 
Fifth Ave opp Diamond St 
Fifth Ave at Grant St NS 
Fifth Ave at William Penn Pl FS 
Fifth Ave at Wood St NS 
Fifth Ave opp McMasters Way 
Stanwix St opp Fourth Ave 

67-Monroeville – Some Sunday evening trip times have changed.

79-East Hills – Some peak trips have been converted into P17 trips. Route 79 will operate between Lincoln Avenue at Verona Boulevard and Wilkinsburg Station during midday and late-evening hours. During the evening peak, inbound 79 trips will operate between Wilkinsburg Station and Lincoln Avenue at Verona Boulevard then turn into a P17 that will serve Downtown via Lincoln Avenue and the East Busway. ​Outbound P17 trips will operate between Downtown to Wilkinsburg Station via Lincoln Park, East Hills, and Wilkinsburg. ​Some Saturday trip times have changed.

  • Quite a few 82 trips were directly connected to the 79, so the headsign actually changed to 79 when it made it to lincoln loop, with no break inbetween. Automatic change at lincoln ave & verona blvd. Helpful for riders who rode because they were able to automatically transfer between routes. Now that these are seperated riders need to transfer, and schedules are not coordinated. Now riders going from east lib to lincoln park, Used to be able to get home from 15mins on one bus, now you need to transfer, and may need to wait for an additional 30 mins.

    Linked trips between 82 and 79 have been severed. Which forces s transfer at lincoln ave and verona blvd, where before, riders would be able to keep on the same bus.
    Started doing this on sundays last pick, now they’re doing it all days.

86-Liberty – Some weekend trip times have changed.

  • Not sure why the schedulers have planned this route group so that the 88 and 87 run at the same time. Then the 86 runs ten minutes later. So riders downtown looking to go outbound have two buses that arrive at the same time, then have to wait 10 minutes for the next, then have to wait 20 minutes again. Why not just space these buses out to every 10 minutes like it used to be?

88-Penn – Some weekday and weekend trip times have changed.

91-Butler Street – Some weekday trip times have changed.

93-Lawrenceville-Hazelwood – Some weekday and weekend trip times have changed. The Charles Anderson Bridge detour via Second Avenue/Greenfield Avenue has been included in the schedule. Additional stops along Greenfield Avenue​ have been added.

Inbound Stops Established for 93-Lawrenceville-HazelwoodOutbound Stops Established for 93-Lawrenceville-Hazelwood
Greenfield Ave at Irvine StGreenfield Ave at Overlook Dr
Greenfield Ave at Sylvan AveGreenfield Ave at Winterburn Ave FS
Greenfield Ave at #322Greenfield Ave at Hoosac St FS
Greenfield Ave at Yoder StGreenfield Ave at Lydia St FS
Greenfield Ave Hayworth StGreenfield Ave opp Kearcher St
Greenfield Ave at Kearcher StGreenfield Ave at Hayworth St
Greenfield Ave at Lydia St          Greenfield Ave opp Yoder St FS
Greenfield Ave at Hoosac StGreenfield Ave at Frazier St
Greenfield Ave at Winterburn AveGreenfield Ave at Second Ave
Ronald St at Beechwood Blvd 
Inbound Stops Discontinued for 93-Lawrenceville-HazelwoodOutbound Stops Discontinued for 93-Lawrenceville-Hazelwood
Blvd of Allies at Juliet StPanther Hollow Rd at Bartlett Rd FS
Blvd of Allies at Ward StPanther Hollow Rd opp Schenley Park Pool
Blvd of Allies at Dawson StBlvd of Allies at Dawson St
Panther Hollow Rd at Panther Hollow Bridge FSBlvd of Allies at Ward St
Blvd of Allies at Bates St 

P17-Lincoln Park Flyer – Some weekday trip times have changed. Inbound morning peak P17 trips will operate between Wilkinsburg Station to Downtown via East Hills and Lincoln Park.​ Outbound P17 trips from Downtown will travel up to Lincoln Avenue at Verona Boulevard then turn into the route 79 and continue to Wilkinsburg Station. ​

  • This change is a step towards better cohesiveness and service improvements for the Lincoln Park area of Penn Hills. It lessens confusion. We hope is that service can continue to be added to the P17 to again be 7-days a week (it used to be back 10-years or so ago when it was called the LP) and give these communities a 1 seat ride into downtown. We’re glad that linked trips are expanded between the 79 and P17 (even though they were lost on the 82).

P12-Holiday Park Flyer – Some weekday trip times have changed.

P76-Lincoln Highway Flyer – Some weekday trip times have changed.

Light Rail

Silver – Some weekday trip times have changed.

Blue – Some weekday trip times have changed.

Reverse the cuts! Take action by signing the petition to PRT. We want a rapid transit plan that brings more access, not less.

If you have stories of bad transit service in the last few months, take a minute to share it with PPT and help advocate for change.

As these changes roll-out, be sure to give your feedback & suggestions by reaching out to PRT Customer Service by phone or over twitter:

PRT Customer service phone number: 412-442-2000

Hours: Weekdays 5a to 7p, Weekend + Holidays 8a to 430p

or via Twitter @PGHTransit or @PGHTransitCare

And if you want to get in touch with the volunteer-run @PGH_Bus_Info Hotline, you can give them a call at 412-759-3335 ONLY When PortAuthority Customer Service is Closed/unavailable or via Twitter anytime @PGH_BUS_INFO

The PGH Bus Info Hotline will be back on PPT’s blog in for the next set of changes. See ya then.

Rally and Testify! New Changes Shouldn’t Set Us Back

image description: flyer for the rally on September 29th with a photo of PPT Member Debra Green at a successful PPT rally to stop cuts to the 61C and text reads: Rally and Testify! We want changes to the 61D, 71A,C,D, that build better access, not shortened access and double fares. September 29th. Wood St & Sixth Ave 8:30am rally 9:30am PRT ZBoard Meeting. Join us! bit.ly/prtchanges

New changes to the 71s and 61s and other routes need to benefit riders! RSVP to join us at the rally and testify to the PRT Board of Directors

BRT improvements should improve our transit access, not set us back. Join the rally to speak up for change!

The changes proposed to accommodate the new Bus Rapid Transit (BRT, for short) project between Downtown and Oakland will make riders’ transit access worse, not better. The 61D, 71A, 71C, and 71D will terminate in Oakland, forcing riders to transfer. This makes trips longer and more unpredictable – a hardship for disabled riders, and riders who pay in cash (because they’ll need to pay an additional $2.75 to transfer). Riders will lose access on these routes to jobs, opportunities, and services at UPMC Mercy, Duquesne University, and other Uptown businesses. Additionally, the changes will limit options for residents in Uptown to access fresh groceries, jobs, healthcare, and more.

Check out our blog to recap the changes that are slated for October 1st. If you are impacted by the changes, please share your story with fellow transit advocates by filling out our Transit Trouble form, and join us at our September 29th rally downtown.

Event details

What to expect: attendees will meet the group at the corner of Sixth Ave and Wood Street at 8:30am. Speakers will share their stories, the group will hold signs and participate in chants to elevate our message to the media. At approximately 9:15, the group will walk over to the PRT offices at the Heinz 57 Center. We will check in, ride the elevators up to the PRT Board Room, and sit down for the meeting. After the Board Conducts the business portion of the agenda, those who have signed up to give public testimony will be invited to a microphone. After all the speakers share their comments the meeting will conclude and we will leave the boardroom, return to the street, and head home.

Accessibility: The corner where we will meet for the rally is outside, in downtown Pittsburgh. So participants should dress for the weather. Reasonably smooth sidewalks and street crossings are available for the 1-block walk over to PRT’s offices inside the Heinz 57 Center. The entrances and elevators are accessible, and there are chairs inside the boardroom. If you need any accommodations to make the meeting or rally more accessible, please let one of our organizers know and we can coordinate with the PRT staff.

Getting there: Many of the system’s routes will bring you to downtown Pittsburgh. If you need a ride, please reach out to PPT at info@pittsburghforpublictransit.org to coordinate. Car parking is metered and available on-street or in a garage. Bike parking is available near the rally location as well.

COVID procedures: COVID rates are high. PPT is encouraging all rally attendees to take a COVID test before the rally to be more certain that they are not carrying the virus. We also are encouraging all participants to wear masks outside and inside. Hand sanitizer and masks will be available.

100+ Riders Join PRT’s BRTx Meeting to Raise Concerns

I’m a student, a freelance interpreter who travels around the city, and also a carer for my grandmother. I rely heavily on the ability to get downtown, and these line changes are cutting my transportation options in half. 

CJ’s question at PRT’s 9/12 Info Session about the BRTX service changes
image description: rider wearing a mask steps off a red PRT bus as another rider in a pink head scarf waits to get on.

Over 100 people attended PRT’s meeting to call for BRT investments to expand access, not limit it

More than 100 riders attended PRT’s info session last night to voice serious concerns about changes being made to the 61D, 71A, 71C, and 71D because of the new BRTx (Bus Rapid Transit University Line) service plan. According to the plan, these routes will stop servicing downtown and Uptown starting October 1st, 2023, and riders will need to get off and wait for another bus to continue inbound or outbound.

Riders who attended the meeting were very clear that this will sever access to schools, grocery stores, apartments, shelters, social services providers, healthcare. They voiced concern that the cuts will affect some low-income neighborhoods and force riders who pay in cash to put out another $2.75 for the transfer. Additionally, they pointed out PRT’s ableist assumptions about transfers, saying that transfers are not just minor inconveniences that add minutes; for many, especially disabled riders, transfers introduce a huge time uncertainty which is an obstacle and disincentive to using transit.

At the meeting, riders flooded the chat with question after question about the changes. Riders felt like the rug was being pulled out from them. Why were these changes happening now? For what purpose? How is it that hundreds of millions of public dollars are being spent on a transportation project that actually reduces their access?

PRT’s answers to these questions seemed scattered and contradictory. They said on the one hand that the changes were always part of 10-year planning process, but instead now that they were being made because of the recent operator shortfall. They also claimed that it was to reduce bus bunching while the construction in the corridor was taking place, which would imply that it would be resolved once the construction is completed.

Riders won’t stop their organizing for BRTx investments to actually improve transit access, not limit it! Join us on September 29th to rally and testify at the PRT Board Meeting.

PRT refuses to release the recording of the meeting (which do they for nearly all other public meetings)! So we have to share these quotes from riders that we pulled from the chat. Do you have a story about how these changes will impact you? Share your story here.:

  • CJ is a student, ASL interpreter and caregiver for grandmother. He asked PRT this question about the changes:

    “I understand that there is a level of redundancy when it comes to what lines go downtown, but that is because many locations in the city can only be reached by transferring downtown. I’m a student, a freelance interpreter who travels around the city, and also a carer for my grandmother. I rely heavily on the ability to get downtown, and these line changes are cutting my transportation options in half. How does PRT plan to help people like me who rely on downtown transfers?” 
  • Verna Johnson is a senior who uses a mobility device:

    “The 61D is the only route that travels from Downtown to the Waterfront in Homestead with good weekday and weekend frequency. During the week, you can expect to get from the Waterfront to Downtown in about an hour. What other transit options is PRT planning to implement to not sacrifice the time it will take or added fare payment from riders who are already rationing their trips due to the cost of fares?”
  • “Unless PRT is willing to pay riders for these transfers, this is a PROBLEM. People don’t have extra money for bus transfers. Make it make sense!”
  • Someone asked a route question and PRT said to call customer service: Viv Shaffer, “I’ve called your customer service and they have no idea. That’s why I’m asking you.” She said, “If maintaining service were a priority you wouldn’t be making all these service cuts. Options that involve transfers are not viable options.”
  • Noelle C. “You keep talking about transferring but that is much easier said than done.”
  • All I want to know is how to get home from downtown after work on a Saturday afternoon without having to change buses and whithout having to climb the hill from the busway. Is the 67 my only option?
  • From Katie L: “Today I am able to take the 61 C/D and 65 bus ot get to Duquesne University from Squirrel Hill. After Oct. 1 I will only be able to take 61C to get to work because the 61D will not go all the way home and the 65 is being detoured AWAY from Duquesne University.”
  • In response to a comment about the changes being good for everyone, Julian X said: “This would only be true if we had outrageously frequent, reliable buses with well-timed transfers. I think what’s more likely in real life includes:
    -Folks paying on cash fares have to pay $5.50 instead of 2.75 to get places.
    -Folks waiting at the end of 5th or Forbes to get their transfer, potentially without a shelter / in the dark / in the rain
    -Folks living in certain places need to walk a lot further to reach the buses that DO go downtown”
  •  Kaitlin B says: “Not to mention- this is a surprise to every consumer/user. We knew some of this was going to happen, but we didn’t know it was NOW. We thought it wouldn’t be for years due to the PRT stops and curb cuts having to be constructed.”
  • Lorita G. says, “My main concern is that 71D bus goes through low-income neighborhoods and riders may not have a Connect card and only have enough money to get downtown and back home. now they have to get off in Oakland and pay another full fare. Also, people with disabilities and seniors who use walkers and canes have to get off and wait for another bus to get them to downtown. what if the weather is bad we will have to wait and are not guaranteed a seat because strollers can occupy the wheelchair and disabled seating area and they will also be over-crowded making me and others have to wait for another bus. This is not fair.”

The push for improvements isn’t over! Join us 9/29 to rally and testify with fellow riders at the September PRT Board Meeting

Feel those temperatures coming down? October 1st is right around the corner and we have no time to waste. That is why we need every rider’s voice to be heard. We need YOU! Rally with us on September 29th to say that the BRT should expand access, not cut it down. 

Riders Say ‘NO’ to cuts on the 61D, 71A, 71C, and 71D.

image description: graph with feedback from January Public Comment period on proposed cuts shows that more than 640 comments were lodged in opposition to the cuts on the 61D, 71A, 71C and 71D.

Hundreds of riders have spoken up about how service cuts to 61D, 71A, 71C, and 71D will harm access for tens of thousands of Pittsburgh residents – and they will continue to do so on 9/12 and 9/29.

On Tuesday, September 12th at the 5:30 pm virtual PRT meeting, dozens of transit riders will raise questions related to four PRT lines facing service cuts starting October 1, 2023. The new Downtown to Oakland Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) project will provide worse access to transit for many thousands of riders, at a cost of hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars.

The 61D, 71A, 71C, and 71D are some of the top 10 highest-ridership routes in all Allegheny County

Ridership on lines facing service cuts are some of the highest amongst all PRT buses; in 2022, the average weekday ridership for the 61D, 71A, 71C, and 71D were 3,467, 3,366, 3,509, 2,659 riders respectively, with fewer than five routes in all of Allegheny County serving more daily riders.

The consequences of these cuts will be severe: for all riders making these particular trips, travel times will be longer. Disembarking and boarding a second bus can be very difficult for older adults and riders with mobility impairments, and because each bus can only accommodate 2 wheelchair users at a time, riders with disabilities are concerned about long waits for available buses. Moreover, cash-paying riders, who are disproportionately very low-income, will be obligated to pay double their fare to make the same trip, with poorer service.

With the 61D, 71A, 71C, and 71D short-turned in Oakland, riders will lose direct connections to Downtown and Uptown. Critical Uptown destinations like Mercy Hospital, Duquesne University, and PPG Paints Arena – where thousands of people travel for jobs, healthcare, higher education, and recreation daily – will no longer be directly accessible on these routes. Conversely, important destinations in the East End like Shadyside Hospital and fresh food access at the Waterfront will no longer be directly accessible for Uptown residents and Duquesne University students.

Riders have always been opposed to these changes – 640 lodged comments against them in January

Riders have long raised concerns about these proposed service changes. In January of this year, more than 640 comments were lodged in opposition to the cuts on the 71A, 71C and 71D during the BRT service public comment period. 

Many more riders in this corridor are becoming aware of these cuts now, because PRT only recently posted about these cuts at bus stops on affected routes, with an imminent implementation date. PPT is disappointed that PRT is choosing to host a meeting that is only a “question and answer session” rather than soliciting public comment now that a broad swath of the affected constituency is becoming aware of the change.

PRT transit operators are deeply concerned about the proposed changes too.

PRT transit operators are deeply concerned about the proposed changes.

Over the last several years, tensions have increased substantially between riders and operators, and have resulted in an escalation in driver assaults. Operators have raised concerns about the logistics of turning around in Oakland, about passenger confusion, and the lack of communication from PRT about the changes to both riders and the workforce. Moreover, because nearly fifty percent of existing service is being cut in the Downtown to Oakland corridor, drivers also worry of overcrowding on 61 A, B and C buses that will continue driving the route, and on keeping their route schedules on time. As the main point of contact for transit riders about PRT, operators fear that rider frustration about these dramatic service changes will continue to be misdirected at them.

Riders are speaking out against these changes – Join transt advocates on 7/29 to rally against these cuts

At the September 12th info session, dozens of transit riders will be asking questions at PRT public hearing related to anticipated impacts of these service cuts to their transit trips. But riders’ organizing will not stop there! Pittsburghers for Public Transit and riders will follow up with a rally and PRT board testimony about the impacts of these changes at 8:30 am on September 29th at 6th and Wood St Downtown. We are encouraging all riders who are impacted by these changes join us at the Board Meeting to speak up for more service, not less.

Take Action Now to Expand Transit Funding in PA!

image description: photo of a person wearing a yellow shirt riding a bus, next to superimposed text that reads, “Tell PA Lawmakers: Support Public Transit. Paid for by Clean Air Action Fund.

Take Action Now to Expand Transit Funding in PA!

We deserve safe, dignified, reliable, public transportation, and right now the federal government has offered us unprecedented opportunity to achieve these ends.

Today, local governments cannot enact local taxes or fees to raise funds for public transportation initiatives. And with permanently-changed travel patterns since the pandemic, ridership and therefore revenue to maintain current service is facing a major cliff.

An ongoing lack of capital funding, combined with limited local matching funds, has created a backlog of maintenance and improvements that are limiting Pennsylvanians’ access to reliable transit and holding back our economy. 

As a result of these restrictions, your local transit agency does not qualify for certain streams of federal transportation dollars. All transit agencies are similarly facing major cuts to service and fare increases without quick action from the state government to ensure stable operating funds.

Show your support by contacting your legislator directly from this page.

The Benefits of Local Transit Funding Control

  1. Fund key capital projects like the return of the Reading line, the proposed Roosevelt Boulevard Subway, and the expanded East Busway
  2. Tackle essential maintenance and construction projects, including making all train and trolley stations accessible
  3. Capitalize on historic federal funds through the Inflation Reduction Act and Infrastructure Investment & Jobs Act.
  4. Expand public transit access and equity 

The Opportunities of Increased Operating Support

Enable faster, more reliable, and more frequent service – the number-one priority of transit riders across demographics

Prevent catastrophic cuts to service and fare increases threatened by transit agencies across the state

Allow agencies breathing room to adjust schedules and routes to meet permanently-altered post-COVID travel patterns

2 Bills, 1 Chance for the Commonwealth

Public transportation operates in all 67 counties in Pennsylvania; this isn’t just an urban issue.

Proposed legislation (HB 1307, HB 902) eliminates barriers to local funding, allowing local experts and lawmakers in Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, and local governments  across the state to plan and prioritize much-needed capital projects.

If passed, this legislation would give local municipalities the freedom to adjust local funding to supplement existing state funding.

Better Transit Now and in the Future

Local control gives SEPTA, PRT and other local transit systems the ability to invest in critical capital projects and maintenance that will ensure safe and reliable ridership for decades to come.

Projects like:

  • Reading Line Extension
  • Pittsburgh Regional Transit East Busway Extension
  • Making all SEPTA stations and vehicles ADA-compliant

A Historic Opportunity

This legislation comes at a critical time, as the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) and Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) have created a once-in-a-generation opportunity for local governments to capitalize on federal funding and dollar-matching programs. Our agencies are also facing major deficits, as COVID emergency funds disappear.

Unless lawmakers act now, Pennsylvania will miss out on these federal dollars for major projects, and also leave agencies scrambling to make cuts and increase fares to make up for funding deficits. Use this widget and tell your elected officials: Support these bills. Support local transportation control. Support stable and reliable transit for Pennsylvania.

What exactly are the benefits of local transit funding control?

image description: an animated infographic details the benefits of local transit funding control: 1. Fund key capital campaigns like the return of the Reading Line, the Rosevelt Blvd Subway, the expanded East Busway. [next to an image of buses and trains] 2. Capitalize on historic federal funds through the Inflation Reduction Act and Infrastructure Investment & Jobs Act [next to an image of a train, bridge and money] 3. Tackle essential maintenance and construction projects, including making all train and trolly stations accessible. [next to an image of accessibility symbols] 4. Expand public transit access and equity. [next to an image of raised hands of different skin tones]

Some 61s and 71s will stop running to downtown. Here’s how to give feedback.

image description: two maps show how the 61D, 71A, 71C, and 71D will turn around in Oakland

Major changes are being proposed to the 61D, 71A, 71C, and 71D. Riders have two opportunities to give feedback before they take effect on October 1

Pittsburgh Regional Transit has announced that some major changes to service on the 61D, 71A, 71C, and 71D will go into effect on October 1st. The changes are being brought on as part of the BRTX project between Oakland and Downtown, but that project is still years from being finished. Riders have been outspoken about the fact that these changes would cut off their easy access to healthcare, jobs, food and schools. Pittsburgh Regional Transit has two opportunities this month to speak up about how these changes will impact you.

Sign up here to rally with PPT and speak up about these changes on September 29th @ 8:30am

What are the changes that are being proposed?

The 61D, 71A, 71C, and 71D will turn around in Oakland and rejoin their traditional outbound route. This means riders on these routes will lose the direct connections to Downtown and Uptown. Destinations like Mercy Hospital, Duquesne University, and PPG Paints Arena – where thousands of people travel for jobs, healthcare, higher education, and recreation daily- will no longer be directly accessible to these routes. Conversely, riders in Uptown will lose direct access on these routes to locations in Oakland, East Liberty, Highland Park, Larimer, Homewood, Point Breeze, Park Place and Wilkinsburg.

These changes may also result in overcrowding on the few buses that will continue into towntown. AND, it will that riders who pay cash fares will need to pay DOUBLE the fare to transfer to a new bus in Oakland.

Sign up to join advocates to rally and give public testimony at the PRT Board Meeting on September 29th at 8:30am

Join the Labor Parade With Transit Riders and Transit Workers

image description: Flyer for PPT’s delegation with ATU Local 85 for the 2023 Labor Day Parade. Includes a photo of PPT holding our banner with ATU Local 85 at the 2014 Labor Day Parade. ATU members are wearing blue shirts. A red Port Authority is in the background as we round the corner from Sixth ave onto Grant Street. Details for the event are included: “September 4th, 10am-1pm, meet 10am at 91 Crawford St, reach out to info@pittsburghforpublic transit if you need a ride, if you have questions, or if you have any other accessibility needs”

Join PPT and Amalgamated Transit Union Local 85 to march in the 2023 Labor Day Parade!

PPT is a grassroots union of both transit riders and transit workers. We know that we are the ones using the system every day and that together, we have the knowledge needed to improve conditions for us all. One of our most fun celebrations of this community-union solidarity is when we march in the Pittsburgh Labor Day Parade – which is the oldest Labor Day Parade in the country!

You can join us at 9am for breakfast with our transit workerf friends from Amalgamated Transit Union, Local 85, at 91 Crawford St, Pittsburgh, PA 15219, right across from Freedom Corner. After breakfast, we’ll head to our spot in the parade lineup. The parade steps off at 10am, but we probably won’t be moving until 10:15. A 40′ PRT bus will join us for the march! We’ll walk our route (approx 1 mile) and then walk back to the start. If anyone needs rides to the event, or back to the start, just reach out to let us know: info@pittsburghforpublictransit.org.

RSVP below to join us and show solidarity with the labor that keep our city moving – September 4th, 10am-1pm. Meet 10am at St Benedict the Moore and reach out to info@pittsburghforpublictransit.org with questions or accessibility needs.