Mon/Fayette Special Edition: Traffic Congestion and Urban Development

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Traffic Congestion and Urban Development

Hotline, Fall 2001

by Nicholas Kyriazi, GASP Member

To complain about the Mon/Fayette Toll Road without complaining about the continuation of suburban development patterns is myopic. Sparsely-built, suburban-type development is completely dependent upon the automobile to move people from home to office to store. Only densely built, urban-type development enables walking, biking, and cost-efficient mass transit. For example, why have there been no complaints about the suburban-type Pittsburgh Technology Center? Instead of office buildings surrounded by parking lots, we could have had an extension of downtown or the South Side.

Until Pittsburgh and all US cities begin to build more densely, we will continue to experience more traffic congestion with the not-surprising call for new and expanded roads along with the inevitable demolition of more of our architectural heritage and decline in the quality of life for those of us living near the highways.