Pittsburgh highways

Except for toll roads, there aren’t very many freeways around Pittsburgh. But anything remotely resembling a freeway has carries a special set of hazards.

Speed

When traffic isn’t heavy, the prevailing speed on highways is generally at least fifteen miles over the posted limit. You are likely to be tailgated and honked at if you go any slower.

On-ramps

The weird thing about on-ramps in this part of the world is that they aren’t merges like I’m used to in California. They’re very short, governed by yield signs or even stop signs. And other drivers actually expect you to yield or stop. If you’re wondering how you’re going to do zero to the prevailing fifteen or twenty over the limit in nothing flat, well, I’m still trying to figure that out, too.
FireShot Capture 128 - Google Maps - www.google.com
Fig. 1. Screenshot from Google Maps, taken April 13, 2020, of the interchange of I-376 and Beechwood Boulevards.

One of the worse examples I’ve seen here here is from Beechwood Boulevard onto the Parkway (I-376) East (figure 1). The on-ramp here terminates with a stop sign. Immediately following the on-ramp is the off-ramp (Exit 74) that leads to Beechwood Boulevard heading toward Squirrel Hill and Homestead. So you need to come to a full stop, wait for a break in traffic, then accelerate like mad and do an additional lane change to the left to get to the Squirrel Hill Tunnel. And of course everybody is doing at least ten or fifteen miles per hour over the speed limit. In general, this interchange is an evil mess from any direction.


This page is part of a section on driving in Pittsburgh: