Cash payers on buses and the T are getting more annoying

Written by Jon Schmitz on .

One of the unforeseen downsides of the Port Authority’s conversion to smartcard fare collection is that customers who pay cash are going to be an even bigger bother to fellow riders.

dollarFor now, holders of monthly and weekly passes can usually step around the rider fumbling with bills and coins at the farebox, holding their passes aloft for the operator to see. Smartcard users can’t do that -- they are required to tap the card against a target on the farebox, and obviously can’t do that while Larry Luddite is trying to coax 1952-vintage George Washingtons into the box.

Port Authority is hoping that most riders will eventually carry smartcards -- they can be programmed to work just like cash, with individual fares deducted each time you ride. A lot of riders are probably hoping the same.

Here’s an update on the next phase of smartcard conversion.

And here are your Wednesday updates on road work:

(A disclaimer -- Sometimes scheduled road work starts late or is finished early -- the times listed in the advisories are the maximums for the scheduled restrictions. Your results may vary.)

The inbound Squirrel Hill Tunnel will close from 9 p.m. Friday to 5 a.m. Monday. We said it in a previous post but it bears repeating.

Banksville Road will be down to one lane in both directions from 8 p.m. Friday to 6 a.m. Monday.

The ramp from the Liberty Bridge to northbound Interstate 579-Crosstown Boulevard will be closed from 8 p.m. Friday to 6 a.m. Monday. The ramp from northbound I-579-Crosstown to Bigelow Boulevard also will be closed. The access ramp to I-579 HOV lanes from Anderson Street on the North Side will be closed from 8 p.m. Thursday to 5 a.m. Friday.

The bathtub’s going to be clogged up again. Work on the inbound Parkway East near the Monongahela Wharf will cause lane closures between Grant Street and the Fort Pitt Bridge starting at 10 p.m. weekdays through Nov. 9. Work concludes by 5 a.m. daily.

Saxonburg Boulevard has reopened in West Deer after slide repairs. Read more here.

The ramp from Chateau Street to northbound Route 65 is closed until about 5 p.m. Wednesday, as is one lane on Route 65 there.

Happy trails,

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