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Southside Crackdown

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By: BarSmart Editor - Feb 01 2013 @ 11:55 AM

Its been two weeks since Mayor Luke Ravenstahl's "Enforcement Blitz" to cut down on chaos in the Southside as part of the Pittsburgh Sociable City Plan that coincidentally came a week after a police chase through the Southside that ended in gunfire.

So far the crackdown has resulted in over a dozen arrests, dozens of traffic citations and towed vehicles and non-traffic citations. We've heard stories of jay walking tickets and noise violations for the bars and roving teams that enter establishments counting patrons and checking paperwork.

From the Jan. 15th press release:

"It is clear that we need an all-hands-on-deck strategy to restore safety to the South Side neighborhood," Ravenstahl said. "This study has great recommendations that will improve certain aspects of the South Side, such as enhanced cooperation among bar and restaurant owners and plans to improve parking and transportation. These strategies, and others, will ultimately lessen the burden on our public safety officers, but we must take action now to restore order to this neighborhood. "

"I have directed my public safety chiefs to continue this enforcement blitz for as long as it takes to restore the quality of life that each and every Pittsburgh resident deserves," Ravenstahl said. "This will not be a once in a while tactic. Every weekend, we will have this ramped up enforcement. If you go to the South Side and take part in any illegal activity, chances are you will be cited or arrested."

The Pittsburgh Sociable City Plan ended its first phase with comprehensive recommendations focusing on the following:
>District Management: Updates to zoning codes by creating a "hospitality zone overlay".
>Transportation: Strategies to enhance parking, taxi service, pedicabs and transit in the nighttime economy.
>Public Safety: Interagency collaborative to improve compliance and reduce risk and harm.
>Hospitality Practices: Efficient process for new businesses and risk management of current businesses
>Personal Accountability: Social marketing for harm reduction. Good neighbor agreements.

The complete 77 Page Pittsburgh Sociable City Plan online.

Are violations the only thing that has been done so far?

Is it helping?

Is the city still not doing enough?

Is the city doing too much and hurting local businesses?

What are they doing right and what are they doing wrong?

 

Replies (1 - 4)

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By: Dunstanj33 - Feb 05 2013 @ 06:49 PM

Reply #1 Link
BarSmart Editor wrote:

Its been two weeks since Mayor Luke Ravenstahl's "Enforcement Blitz" to cut down on chaos in the Southside as part of the Pittsburgh Sociable City Plan that coincidentally came a week after a police chase through the Southside that ended in gunfire.

So far the crackdown has resulted in over a dozen arrests, dozens of traffic citations and towed vehicles and non-traffic citations. We've heard stories of jay walking tickets and noise violations for the bars and roving teams that enter establishments counting patrons and checking paperwork.

From the Jan. 15th press release:

"It is clear that we need an all-hands-on-deck strategy to restore safety to the South Side neighborhood," Ravenstahl said. "This study has great recommendations that will improve certain ...
Quote trimmed, click the up arrow for full text.

We need a police station back in Southside, with officers that are stationed here who can get to know the business owners and the area. Officers who will recognize the difference between a trouble establishment and local business that are trying to help. Ever since they moved the station up into Mt. Oliver, violent crimes have gotten worse. And while parking enforcement is nice, it should not be the focus of this "blitz". We should be working towards public safety by encouraging a more ordered environment, not punishing community fixtures for gray area violations.

I'm drot Nunk!
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By: Statler and Waldorf - Feb 08 2013 @ 04:46 PM

Reply #2 Link
BarSmart Editor wrote:

Its been two weeks since Mayor Luke Ravenstahl's "Enforcement Blitz" to cut down on chaos in the Southside as part of the Pittsburgh Sociable City Plan that coincidentally came a week after a police chase through the Southside that ended in gunfire.

So far the crackdown has resulted in over a dozen arrests, dozens of traffic citations and towed vehicles and non-traffic citations. We've heard stories of jay walking tickets and noise violations for the bars and roving teams that enter establishments counting patrons and checking paperwork.

From the Jan. 15th press release:

"It is clear that we need an all-hands-on-deck strategy to restore safety to the South Side neighborhood," Ravenstahl said. "This study has great recommendations that will improve certain ...
Quote trimmed, click the up arrow for full text.

Allowing less people in the bar = people getting drinks and drunk faster.

Longer lines outside of bars trying to get inside so you moved the drunks out into the street.

Nice job!

Writes on restroom walls.
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By: Arich9504 - Feb 25 2013 @ 03:29 PM

Reply #3 Link
BarSmart Editor wrote:

Its been two weeks since Mayor Luke Ravenstahl's "Enforcement Blitz" to cut down on chaos in the Southside as part of the Pittsburgh Sociable City Plan that coincidentally came a week after a police chase through the Southside that ended in gunfire.

So far the crackdown has resulted in over a dozen arrests, dozens of traffic citations and towed vehicles and non-traffic citations. We've heard stories of jay walking tickets and noise violations for the bars and roving teams that enter establishments counting patrons and checking paperwork.

From the Jan. 15th press release:

"It is clear that we need an all-hands-on-deck strategy to restore safety to the South Side neighborhood," Ravenstahl said. "This study has great recommendations that will improve certain ...
Quote trimmed, click the up arrow for full text.

Positives:
- The increased number of visable uniforms around the community are helping a great deal just by being there. Having an officer nearby keeps people under control who might normally start getting tough or destructive.
- Keeping the bars from getting overcrowded is a good thing. In case you haven't noticed, being jammed in like a can of sardines really sucks. If you don't like standing in lines, go try one of the other 1000 bars in Southside. And of course, in case of an emergency maybe you won't get burned or trampled to death.
- With so many vehicles crammed onto narrow streets and often out into intersections, emergency vehicles (fire & EMS) are incapable of responding because their vehicles can't make the tight corners and overcrowded streets. Tow em outta there
- Roving DUI checkpoints keep people guessing and dissuade people from driving intoxicated keeping other drivers and pedestrians safer

Negatives:
- Many (not all) of the officers seem to be missing the point of this "Enforcement Blitz". There have been countless occasions where an over zealous officer will go out of their way to be a total prick to pretty much any Southside patron that happens by them. They need to keep in mind that every person walking along Carson street is not the enemy here. In fact 99% of them tend to go about their evening in a perfectly acceptable manner, it's that 1% who is starting fights, vandalizing property, etc, that they need to identify and immediately pounce on. Every other person should be treated courteously.
- Parking. You can tow 60 cars every Friday and Saturday and the problem will persist unless a proactive solution is introduced. The residents of Southside are screwed every weekend if they come home after 9pm. There are residential parking permit zones in place but the Parking Authority does an absolute horrible job of enforcing these. Even if they did all it would serve is some extra ticket revenue from people who are desperate for a place to park and have literally no other options other than parking in a permit area and risking a ticket. The city and Parking Authority should work toward building a sizable parking garage in the center of Southside, (Not in the works, or in station square) or make tax breaks available to incentivize a private company to build a garage in the area. Another option would be to run free shuttles up and down Carson st on weekend nights to and from the existing garages and expansive surface lots in Station Square and Southside Works.
- Padestrian traffic. The sidewalks are narrow, and people were already spilling out onto the streets before bar capacity limits were being enforced, now the problem is even worse. Southside is an old neighborhood and there is absolutely no way to make the streets and sidewalks any bigger, so I see only one viable solution. Close Carson St to traffic from 12th St to 21st street (or there abouts). Have police divert traffic along Sarah, Muriel, Sidney, Jane, Wharton, etc..., then have the entire street area along that stretch open to pedestrians. (Similar to Beale St in Memphis or Bourbon St in New Orleans. With all this extra created room street vendors would have space to set up shop, and bars could rope in an outdoor seating area in front of their establishment while still having plenty of room for pedestrian traffic along the street.

All in all I do not approve of the job being done so far, they're trying to slap a bandaid on the problem and hope we will be satisfied, then things will eventually go back the way they were once people stop paying attention. Lets see some real, long lasting solutions introduced to solve these very real problems

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By: Jaggerbush - Oct 09 2013 @ 11:29 PM

Reply #4 Link
BarSmart Editor wrote:

Its been two weeks since Mayor Luke Ravenstahl's "Enforcement Blitz" to cut down on chaos in the Southside as part of the Pittsburgh Sociable City Plan that coincidentally came a week after a police chase through the Southside that ended in gunfire.

So far the crackdown has resulted in over a dozen arrests, dozens of traffic citations and towed vehicles and non-traffic citations. We've heard stories of jay walking tickets and noise violations for the bars and roving teams that enter establishments counting patrons and checking paperwork.

From the Jan. 15th press release:

"It is clear that we need an all-hands-on-deck strategy to restore safety to the South Side neighborhood," Ravenstahl said. "This study has great recommendations that will improve certain ...
Quote trimmed, click the up arrow for full text.

Mayor Luke's statements are total crap Ive PERSONALLY witnessed police failing to make an arrest for both a violent felony and a dui. The dui they removed the driver, said he was too drunk to drive and sent him on his way. He of course returned 10 minutes later to drive. Some blitz, now they harass respectable establishments by sending in different inspectors each week they give business owners different instructions on what to fix. It's all on a whim, nobody uses checklists or even checks for the same things. As taxpayers, we should be outraged that we are paying overtime for this.

 
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