St. Paul bikeway still going in circles

March 27, 2012 by  

Yet another revision has been proposed to the Jefferson Avenue Bikeway at Mount Curve Boulevard in St. Paul. The latest amendment to the bikeway is the addition of another traffic circle, the fifth in the $1 million federally funded project. The revision to the plan was unanimously approved by the planning commission in March, and will go to final approval on April 4 with construction proposed for later in 2012.

The planning commission hopes to make the bikeway the official bicycle route, linking the Smith Avenue High Bridge and Mississippi River Boulevard. The east-west bikeway plan calls for renovations to Jefferson Avenue, making it both bike-friendly and safe for pedestrians. Additional parking is also recommended for the Prior and Kenneth intersection, and the Fairview and Snelling area.

Sharrows, or road markings, will guide bikers along the path indicating speed limits. Most of the pathway will be restricted to 40 mph with a reduction to 30 mph between Victoria Street and Lexington Parkway. Markers would also warn bikers of upcoming traffic circles at Wheeler, Finn, Davern, Macalester and now, Mount Curve Boulevard. This latest circle would be added to the Jefferson Avenue Bikeway in 2015. Route revisions will no doubt be advertised to the public with poster and flying printing, and print companies may provide maps of the newly revised St. Paul bikeway.

The planning commission has not announced a firm date for construction; however, officials are anxious to get the project under way as 75 per cent of the cost is provided by the federal government for use in 2012 only. The bikeway is already in partial use from West Seventh Street to Snelling. Bike lanes, street signage, and sharrows have been in place since 2010.