Why a 4 to 3 conversion on Lyndale Ave S?

At Our Streets Minneapolis, we’re calling for a short term safety treatment called a 4 to 3 conversion on Lyndale Ave S from Franklin Ave to 31st street. Here is some more information on this treatment and our stance.

What is a 4 to 3 conversion?

A 4 to 3 conversion is a type of road safety treatment. In this treatment, a 4 lane  street without a center median, like Lyndale Ave S, is transformed to have two car travel lanes in each direction, with a two-way
center turn lane.

Two street diagrams side by side. The first appears under the word 'Before.' It has four lanes, two in each direction. The second appears under the word 'After.' It has three lanes with one in each direction and a center turn lane.

Why are you recommending a 4 to 3 conversion right now?

Lyndale Ave S is currently a four lane undivided highway. These types of streets have a high number of crashes and are especially unsafe for people biking, walking and rolling. There are also high numbers of car crashes caused by differences in speeds between cars, and a higher rate of weaving between lanes.

Lyndale Ave S is no exception. This street is part of the City’s “high injury crash network”, a small number of streets that contribute to a majority of severe injury and fatal crashes in Minneapolis. Five out of the top ten intersections with the most vehicle crashes in Minneapolis are on Lyndale Ave S, according to the Vision Zero Crash report.  

4 to 3 conversions have been consistently proven to significantly improve safety on these streets—with one study showing up to a 47% percent reduction in crashes. This conversion can be done very quickly, in just a few days using just paint. It can also be carried out at a very low cost.

Will car traffic get worse?

Hennepin County’s
own data says that traffic congestion either decreases or stays the same after a 4-3 conversion. 

We are calling on Hennepin County to take a stand—to prioritize human life over traffic congestion concerns. A 4 to 3 conversion will be a first step towards building a Lyndale Avenue that puts people first.

Why are you not asking for more active transportation infrastructure like bike lanes and wider sidewalks?

Because Lyndale Ave S is so dangerous right now, our goal is to advocate for a proven short term treatment that will provide immediate safety benefits: a 4 to 3 conversion.

We will continue to engage community members to help create a long term vision for Lyndale Ave S. This will likely happen only when the corridor is fully reconstructed—a process that can take years. From a safety perspective, we cannot afford to wait that long and continue to put community lives in danger. We see this 4 to 3 conversion as an important first step in a longer term reconstruction process.

Will this affect parking?

This will not affect existing street parking. All existing street parking will remain after a 4 to 3 conversion is carried out.

How can I help make this happen?

Contact your Hennepin County Commissioner
and ask them to direct staff at Hennepin County Public Works to carry out a 4-3 conversion on Lyndale Ave S immediately. Find out who represents you by using the map below or this district locator.

You can also email Carla Steuve, the Hennepin County engineer in charge of this project.




Showing 3 reactions

  • Jennifer D.
    From my experience operating a tow truck in congested cities like Victoria BC, these kinds of projects can do wonders for areas with benefits that continue to improve traffic conditions man years down the road. I wish you all the best with this project!

    Kind regards from Victoria Tow Truck Service
    ​(250) 800-2340
  • Richard Aus
    No. Leave Lyndale Ave S ALONE. Minneapolis has DESTROYED major routes in the city. I drive the city 8 hours a day, 6 days a week. 4 to 3, 4 to 2 has made movement a disaster. So many more people speed, BECAUSE YOU CANT GET ANYEHERE!! Plymouth Ave from NE to north, across the river us a complete FAILURE. I sit on that bridge for 10-15 stop light rotations during (non-Covid-19) rush hour. Hennepin Ave S, a complete failure. Downtown? People speed their asses off because it takes SO long to move. Hiawatha? Whoever did that road SHOULD ABSOLUTELY BE FIRED. Lyndale Ave S is one of the roads thT ACTUALLY STILL MOVES. LEAVE UT ALONE.
  • Ash N

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