Margaret J. Krauss

Development and Transportation Reporter

Margaret J. Krauss is WESA's development and transportation reporter. She previously worked for Keystone Crossroads, a statewide reporting initiative that covers problems facing Pennsylvania's cities and possible solutions. Before joining Keystone Crossroads, Margaret produced a 48-part radio series about Pittsburgh's lesser-known history, biking 2,000 miles around the region to do so.

Ways to Connect

Kailey Love / 90.5 WESA

Port Authority buses and trains arrive on schedule less than 70 percent of the time, according to a new report from state Auditor General Eugene DePasquale. While there’s room to improve, DePasquale acknowledged that the agency has come a long way.

In 2014, his office released an audit that covered 2007 to 2012. Port Authority’s fiscal house was really out of whack, he said.

“What gets me rolling is when you’re giving a former executive director free housing, a free car, while cutting routes,” DePasquale said. “That gets my blood boiling.”

Kevin C. Brown / 90.5 WESA

Finding the right words can be tough. It’s something therapist Kim Hardin grapples with daily. She often works with patients who have experienced trauma, and wants to ensure they feel safe and supported as they confront their greatest challenges.

Jake Savitz / 90.5 WESA

Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto’s proposed 2019 capital budget could cut funding for the Urban Redevelopment Authority by more than $5 million. URA officials say that limits their ability to invest in neighborhoods.

Suprima Joshi, Xianfu Sun

In Bloomfield, at the confluence of four roads, one bridge, and 11 lanes of traffic, there stands a grocery store. Some see an invaluable resource in the Bloomfield ShurSave IGA, others an underused space, and some, an opportunity—the future is in the eye of the beholder. As well as that of any future developer.

Sarah Kovash / 90.5 WESA

It’s been more than eight months since one of Uber’s cars struck and killed an Arizona woman while the vehicle was in self-driving mode. The company grounded its fleet while internal and federal investigations were underway. Now, Uber aims to return to testing on public streets.

 

Short: Arguing Can Be Invigorating

Dec 5, 2018
Margaret J. Krauss / 90.5 WESA

“The English word ‘rabbi’ is derived from the Hebrew word ‘rabi’ meaning, ‘my teacher,’” explains Rabbi Seth Adelson. On a recent afternoon, he gestured toward the bookshelves that line the back of his office and said Jews have traditionally been known as the people of the book. “We are committed to writing our tradition down. We're still arguing about our ancient books,” he said. “That is what has kept us alive.”

Suiseiseki / Wikimedia Commons

Getting to work can feel like running an extended obstacle course: kids who refuse to put on coats, construction detours, bus delays. The prize? Doing it all over again the next day.

Google Earth

Nine non-federal hydroelectric power plants exist in the Pittsburgh region, and if all goes to plan, a tenth will supply the University of Pittsburgh with a significant portion of its energy by 2022.

Care Work

Nov 28, 2018
Margaret J. Krauss / 90.5 WESA

Keeping young children safe and curious, caring for aging parents or counseling a friend suffering from heartbreak are not easy tasks. Done off-the-clock, we don’t not always think of these things as work. In this episode of 90.5 WESA’s series, Still Working, we follow four people for whom caring is part of the job description.

Short: 'Like Getting Punched In The Face'

Nov 28, 2018
Kevin C. Brown / 90.5 WESA

A rainy day combined with a moss-covered tree, and Bryan McQuaid ended up with a broken bone in his shoulder. While trimming trees for an electric utility, the spikes on his shoes slipped. McQuaid’s safety harness caught him, but swung him hard into a tree.

David Zalubowski / AP

Pittsburgh Public Schools board representative Kevin Carter says he did not sign a letter of support for Amazon’s HQ2 that bears his signature. And the solicitor for the school district, whose office procured that letter, says an investigation will begin immediately. 

Short: Bartender Confidential

Nov 21, 2018
Margaret J. Krauss / 90.5 WESA

An ice machine breaks; a cook cuts her hand; the kitchen runs out of a key ingredient early in the night. After 20 years in restaurants, bartender Nicole Battle has seen it all. No matter what is going on behind the scenes, “you're expected to be on all the time,” she said. “It’s ... insanely mentally challenging sometimes.”

Short: The Art Behind The Art

Nov 20, 2018
Kevin C. Brown / 90.5 WESA

Before a ballet can be performed, dancers need to know their moves, tickets must be sold, and musicians hired. Oh, and the performers need something to wear.

Margaret J. Krauss / 90.5 WESA

The opening pages of Pittsburgh’s bid for Amazon describe the region as proactive and innovative, and tout it as a place of partnership with an enviable cost of living. “The world’s most customer-centric company deserves a customer-centric home,” it reads. “In Pittsburgh, you will be our neighbor, and we will treat you like one.”

Elaine Thompson / AP

Pittsburgh will not be home to Amazon’s second headquarters, nor its third. On Tuesday, the company announced its plans to split HQ2 between two locations: Long Island City, in Queens, New York, and Crystal City, just outside Washington, D.C.

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

Pittsburgh City Council will take a final vote tomorrow on whether to authorize the city to conduct a government-wide gender equity study. Pittsburgh’s Gender Equity Commission would oversee the study.

Short: Shoes Of The Trade

Nov 8, 2018
Kevin C. Brown / 90.5 WESA

Stay on your toes. For Julia Erickson, a principal dancer with the Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre, this phrase is more than metaphor. It’s part of her job. And one that requires a special tool.

COURTESY OF LINDSEY WILLIAMS FOR PA AND FRIENDS OF JEREMY SHAFFER

Updated, 11/7/18 9:00 a.m. with latest vote totals

 

In a very tight race for the 38th state Senate district, Democrat Lindsey Williams declared victory, as her Republican opponent Jeremy Shaffer conceded on social media.

Google maps

Braddock is the latest municipality to struggle with elevated lead levels. Recent testing showed a spike above federal law. But, unlike a lot of places, the Braddock Water Authority’s pipes are likely not to blame.

Margaret J. Krauss / 90.5 WESA

Sylvan Simon, 86, and Bernice Simon, 84, were married for 62 years, and wed at Tree of Life synagogue.

Bar Work

Nov 1, 2018
Margaret J. Krauss / 90.5 WESA

To “set a high bar” is one of those stock phrases moms and bosses use to talk about expectations and achievement and the importance of giving your all. In this episode of Still Working, 90.5 WESA’s series about work, we took that bar literally. We shadowed a lawyer (who must pass the bar to practice), a ballerina (who begins class each day at the barre), an ironworker (“Rebar makes the world go round"), and a bartender (not going to explain that one).

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

Judge Terrence O’Brien ruled that the City of Pittsburgh and Allegheny County failed to justify the nondisclosure of the region’s bid for Amazon’s second headquarters, or HQ2. City and county officials say they intend to appeal the decision to Commonwealth Court.

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

Hundreds of people gathered Monday night at Carnegie Mellon University to honor those killed in Saturday’s attack on Tree of Life synagogue.

Margaret J. Krauss / 90.5 WESA

It was a case of mistaken identity.

“I think I just saw a cat,” said Sadie Fielding, stopping near a hedge on Windsor Street in Greenfield. “I did! Hey, Penny. Except now you’re fat, why are you fat?”

“What? Why is--?” exclaimed Betsy Vicente, whipping around to investigate. “That’s Slippers!”

Margaret J. Krauss / 90.5 WESA

Steve Kelley spends his nights cleaning offices in downtown Pittsburgh. He’s a union janitor with SEIU 32BJ. While he makes his way through three huge floors, he thinks about music; he plays heavy metal. “It’s my heart, it’s my passion,” he says.

Margaret J. Krauss / 90.5 WESA

The number of people who bike in Pittsburgh continues to grow. The aim of the city’s bike plan is to ensure the infrastructure grows, too, but with high levels of public input.

Kevin C. Brown / 90.5 WESA

Emergency room physician Dr. Tom Martin doesn’t mind living in the past, a little bit. When he goes home, he spends time thinking about his night and patients. But it isn’t what went right that he wants to remember.

Margaret J. Krauss / 90.5 WESA

The double yellow line that runs down the middle of Thomas Boulevard in North Point Breeze separates eastbound and westbound traffic. 

Margaret J. Krauss / 90.5 WESA

The state Department of Community and Economic Development has rejected an Office of Open Records decision that it must release its proposal to attract Amazon’s second headquarters, or HQ2, to Pennsylvania. 

Margaret J. Krauss / 90.5 WESA

Being prepared is not just a motto for the Boy Scouts. When the mercury plummets, evening breaking news reporter Andrew Goldstein of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette knows the value of having the right tool for the job.

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