On July 9, the Downtown Bikeways volunteer workgroup came together again to show the City of Minneapolis how much support there is for safer biking in downtown. Over the last month, we’ve made great strides toward showing finding that interest in residents and visitors of downtown Minneapolis. (Check out our June update here.) Read on to learn about the interest we’re creating and how we’re going to use it to get protected bikeways on 9th/10th St and LaSalle/1st Ave.
Dedicated volunteers chose to spend a beautiful summer evening indoors at the Dunn Bros. near Loring Park, working to make more downtown bikeways a reality. We began with an ice-breaker question: “What do you adore about summer in Minneapolis?” Not surprisingly, most answers had to do with perfect weather for biking, plus a dash of lake fun.
After recruiting volunteers to serve as photographer, timekeeper, and meeting report writer, we moved on to corridor reports. (You can review May’s meeting report here.)
After a three year study period of the area, a one way delineator-protected bikeway is to be installed on both University Ave and 4th St SE. These new lanes will continue the work of the Bicycle Master Plan from Hennepin County, Minnesota Department of Transportation, and the City of Minneapolis.
Portion of University Ave and 4th St to become protected bike lanes.Read more
When it comes to bike-friendly rankings, Minneapolis has long outperformed our climate, even before we began serious investment in safe spaces to bike. That’s a result of the incredible Minneapolis Park trail network. The Park and Recreation Board got an early start building bike trails along Kenwood Parkway in 1895 and along Lake Harriet in 1896. (Check out more of our city’s early bikeway history in this chapter of the Minneapolis Master Bike Plan.)
The Grand Rounds was created as a recreational network. Because it circles the whole city (save the unfinished section in northeast/southeast) and connects to Downtown along the river, it puts most Minneapolitans close to a continuous protected bikeway with access to every corner of the city. When I moved to Minneapolis in 1996, the parks were great, and the streets… well, while rideable, they weren’t for the timid.
Thank you to Anna for taking the notes for this blog and to Sara for serving as photographer.
This May evening was as beautiful as April was snowy (catch up on our April work here). All the Dunn Bros bike racks (and sign posts for half a block in every direction) were filled to overflowing by the time the 12 of us all got settled. Our crew grew again, with three new people joining us (welcome Jesse and Nicky and Aaron).
We’ve finally settled on a standing meeting time: the first Monday of the month, from 6-7:30. Put June 4th on your calendar (but note that in July we’re postponing by a week due to the 4th of July). Come join our mighty band of organizers!
Thanks to Keith Heiberg for writing this post, and Chrissy for sharing her notes with Keith. Thanks to meeting photographer Sara for the pictures below.
On Tuesday, April 3, the Downtown Bikeways group met for the second time over pastries and trail mix - during a snowstorm. A hearty 10 souls made it to Dunn Bros, and more than one person biked despite the six inches of April snow. We also laughed a lot.
For some history, here's Tyler's blog post of our March meeting. At our first meeting we discussed overall goals and approaches; this time we dug into the details of what activities will be most effective in showcasing demand for these corridors, so that we can make downtown (and getting to downtown) safer for people on bikes.Read more
Location: 29th Avenue at Midtown Greenway
Photo by Joshua Houdek
City plans designate 29th Avenue as both a bicycle boulevard and a safe route for Seward students biking or walking to school. Traffic counts taken during the trial closure showed a reduction in traffic around the greenway as well as a few blocks away near the school, transportation planner Forrest Hardy told the committee.
The permanent closure involves installing low barriers both north and south of the greenway, with enough space on either side for bicycles to pass through. The barriers would be low enough to the ground that emergency vehicles could cross over them.Read more
Location: St. Anthony Parkway South to 10th Ave NE
Marshall St NE has been identified by the four adjoining neighborhood groups, Marshall Terrace, Bottineau, Sheridan, and St. Anthony West as a corridor that needs bicycle and pedestrian improvements.
County maintenance staff have identified that pavement on Marshall will need to be replaced in 3-5 years. The maintenance costs for this corridor are high because of the crumbling (literally) infrastructure, so reconstruction should happen sooner rather than later.Read more
Location: Hennepin Ave to 5th Ave Downtown
Hennepin County will finish its reconstruction of Washington Avenue from Hennepin Ave to 5th Ave in downtown Minneapolis in 2017.
Additionally, the County will re-stripe the lanes on Washington Avenue from 5th Ave to I-35W. This re striping will reduce the outlined portion of Washington from three lanes to two, leaving room for full-time parking and bikeway. It is a fantastic opportunity to extend the protected bikeway on the reconstructed segment almost to the University of Minnesota.Read more
Location: Between 10th St and Oak St
The City is leading the outreach, working with County. Simon Blenski is the lead at the City. A group of stakeholders has been formed that includes businesses in the corridor, UMN student groups, and staff at the Minneapolis Bicycle Coalition.