Monday, August 10, 2009

Casino News Cycle

Well, when I saw this I was pretty pissed:

Cyclists who endured the lengthy closure of the trail during the casino's construction were upset to learn, over the weekend, that they had to walk their bikes in front of the slots venue...

"Many folks in the bicycle community are upset, as well they should be, because that trail should be a point where people can continue to bike," said [Pittsburgh Mayor Luke] Ravenstahl. "I would say that we share the frustration of the cyclist community with that issue. It was our understanding that that would be an area where cyclists could continue to bike.

"We're going to work with the casino to try to get that rectified."

Casino spokesman Dan Fee said he was aware of the restriction, but did not know if it is temporary or permanent. Nor did he have any immediate information regarding the reason for the restriction.

"It is private property," he said. "I don't know what the substance of their complaint is."
While not the "substance" of the complaint, I would say that the "spirit" of the complaint is that there's a fucking God-awful parking garage/casino that's been built on the North Side over the heads of residents of the neighborhood and of the City and one which is just going to exacerbate social and economic problems in order to shave a few dimes off of Fox Chapel property tax bills. Casino owners not allowing people egress across a property that's supposedly a vehicle for public tax relief seems down right hypocritical and also anathema to the recent spirit of opening up the riverfronts for public use.

[Jumps off soapbox and regains composure.]

If this is not just a temporary situation, I'd say that the folks over at Bike Pittsburgh should mobilize their membership and their friends and have them all park their bikes in each individual space in the garage.

After cyclists complained about the walk-your-bikes restrictions, Mr. Onorato's Special Projects Coordinator Darla Cravotta today called casino Community Relations Manager George Matta. "George told us that they are going to change the sign that's there," said county spokesman Kevin Evanto "to something along the lines of, 'Please proceed with caution.' "
Well, alright then. Glad that's solved.


n'at said...

You'd think a casino could hire top shelf so they could adequately speak out of both sides of their mouth. Instead they settle on Rendell's campaign spokesperson.

MH said...

My position is that we should do everything we can to encourage cycling everywhere except Squirrel Hill and Oakland.

Mark Rauterkus said...

If we had any design sense -- they would have built a ped and bike bridge / fly over.

O said...

If we had any design sense, Mark, we would have blown it up by now.