On March 4, Council Member Betsy Hodges, Project Engineer Bev Warmke and Bike-Ped Coordinator Shaun Murphy presented the final plan for the West 46th Street Repaving Project, pending City Council approval, to a community meeting. The project runs 4 blocks from Lyndale to Dupont Avenues South on West 46th Street.
The plan includes advisory bicycle lanes on both sides of the street for that four block stretch. The plan should be on the city’s website within a week.
After a few questions from some attendees who were confused regarding the purpose of advisory bike lanes and statements from other attendees who wanted to vent about inattentive bicyclists and who wondered why bicycle routes could not be confined to side streets, a few attendees got down to their main complaint that the plan calls for bump outs at Aldrich, Bryant, and Colfax when the businesses along the plan are unanimously against them. The businesses say they are concerned about the loss of parking spots.
When pointed out that the bump outs cover areas where it is already illegal to park, the discussion then moved to complaints about snow removal on bump out corners, and how city businesses are over-regulated, over-taxed and are being run out of business. CM Hodges addressed the snow removal issues directly and said it was her call to put in the bump outs and that she had to balance year round pedestrian safety against possible snow removal issues. Hodges also said she would meet one-on-one with business owners on their taxes and regulatory concerns.
The panel also indicated the city would be looking at bicycle facilities on West 46th Street east of Lyndale and across 35W when that part of West 46th Street is up for repaving.