The $228 million Early Action Program conceived by the Port Authority of Allegheny County in 1969 and funded by the local, state, and federal governments in 1970 was intended to end the seemingly endless series of biennial transit studies and begin the construction of a countywide rapid transit system on an incremental basis. It was to use various technologies, including existing trolleys, exclusive busways in the east and south, and the Transit Expressway (Skybus)--rubber-tired computer-controlled vehicles tied to an exclusive guideway--in the South Hills sector. Perhaps no rapid transit effort, especially the Transit Expressway element, has undergone as close public and technical scrutiny as has the Early Action Program. The inability to implement the program expeditiously resulted in the Urban Mass Transportation Administration's suspension of further action in the South Hills sector in October 1974. In 1975, key representatives of local and state governments as well as the Port Authority began working together to break the deadlocked argument about a fixed-guideway transit system for the South Hills corridor. An independent consultant was selected to perform the final alternatives analysis. When the South Hills alternatives analysis was completed and the recommendation of light-rail transit (LRT) technology was accepted in March 1976, a community consensus had been achieved. As a result, the Port Authority amended the Early Action Program to substitute LRT for the rubber-tired vehicles on the Transit Expressway and is proceeding with engineering and environmental impact studies with the objective of having the first stage of the LRT system operational in the South Hills sector by the Early 1980s. /Author/

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    • Distribution, posting, or copying of this PDF is strictly prohibited without written permission of the Transportation Research Board of the National Academy of Sciences. Unless otherwise indicated, all materials in this PDF are copyrighted by the National Academy of Sciences. Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved. This paper appeared in TRB Special Report No. 182, Light-Rail Transit: Planning and Technology.
  • Corporate Authors:

    Transportation Research Board (TRB)

    Washington, DC   
  • Authors:
    • Hardy, Theodore C
  • Publication Date: 1978

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  • Media Type: Print
  • Features: Figures; References;
  • Pagination: pp 38-42
  • Monograph Title: Light rail transit: planning and technology
  • Serial:

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  • Accession Number: 00301305
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS, TRB, ATRI
  • Created Date: Oct 17 1981 12:00AM