Street, Road and Highway Projects

Roads - Rails - Sidewalks - Bikeways
MNdible
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Re: Street, Road and Highway Projects

Postby MNdible » September 26th, 2016, 6:51 pm

Way back when, before any bike lanes were added, there were left turn lanes. When they added the bike lanes, the thru-lanes shifted over to the left such that there wasn't room for them. In the new layout, they've shifted the lanes back, such that there's room for the turn lanes again (and they could probably allow left-side parking through this stretch). Some people use the space there as if it's a turn lane, some don't. It's confusing, and I don't know why they just don't sign it for left turns.

mattaudio
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Re: Street, Road and Highway Projects

Postby mattaudio » September 26th, 2016, 6:54 pm

Way back when, it was a two-way street.

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sdho
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Re: Street, Road and Highway Projects

Postby sdho » September 26th, 2016, 10:00 pm

MNdible wrote:Way back when, before any bike lanes were added, there were left turn lanes. When they added the bike lanes, the thru-lanes shifted over to the left such that there wasn't room for them. In the new layout, they've shifted the lanes back, such that there's room for the turn lanes again (and they could probably allow left-side parking through this stretch). Some people use the space there as if it's a turn lane, some don't. It's confusing, and I don't know why they just don't sign it for left turns.
Still don't appear to be any LTLs at Lake St as of Street View 2007, but damn, they've got a double-left turn condition allowed at 31st. It's amazing how Minneapolis is able to continue to chip away bit by bit at all this excess capacity, and yet stuff continues to move along just fine -- while streets get safer for people walking and on bikes. Minneapolis is still a really great place to drive -- and getting to be a better place to bike every day.

EDIT: Ah I see the bike lane ended at Lake St in those days. So it makes sense I see a ton of LT capacity at 31st and not Lake

twincitizen
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Re: Street, Road and Highway Projects

Postby twincitizen » October 3rd, 2016, 8:37 am

MNDOT is taking an early glimpse at the scope of planned rehab work on 3rd Avenue bridge: http://finance-commerce.com/2016/10/mnd ... nneapolis/

Likely to be >$40MM and take place in the "early 2020s".

RFP: http://www.dot.state.mn.us/consult/docu ... 45-rfp.pdf

grant1simons2
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Re: Street, Road and Highway Projects

Postby grant1simons2 » October 3rd, 2016, 11:43 am

Question: Do a lot of cities send out RFPs for design & engineering services of streets? How much say does Public Works have in the design? Do they oversee engineering?

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Sacrelicio
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Re: Street, Road and Highway Projects

Postby Sacrelicio » October 21st, 2016, 11:06 am

Wasn't sure where else to put this but I had an idea related to putting lids on freeways in Minneapolis.

As we know, covering a section of freeway is a pretty large project. But what if we just widened some of the existing bridges that cross freeways enough so that you get a better pedestrian experience and some of the effect of having a lid without actually building a full lid.

So for an example, I'd start with the bridge where Franklin crosses 35W. Add some "pedestrian decks" on both sides that are about as wide as the bridge is now. It would widen the sidewalk space significantly and make the overall bridge width about 3 times as wide without widening the roadway itself. You could add art, street furniture, shrubbery, whatever, but it would be an improvement over narrow sidewalks that look out onto a freeway and a chain link fence. The experiences of crossing on foot, bicycle, AND car would be a little more pleasant. The apartments there would have a little more space for people and less freeway to look at. Just overall a better experience for not a lot of money or time.

You could also build them so that a lid could be added later that would connect to the decks. It would be an incremental way of covering the freeways rather than doing one large piece at a time.

talindsay
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Re: Street, Road and Highway Projects

Postby talindsay » October 23rd, 2016, 10:30 pm

Yes, I've suggested this before, and it's a technique that's used in other places. Even if you decide to *develop* over the freeway, you don't need to develop a full block - just line the sides of the bridges, and leave the center of the "block" open to the freeway below. It dramatically reduces costs because they can be kept narrow enough to not require ventilation equipment under the bridge, which still technically isn't a "tunnel" at that point.

I actually think developing just single-story commercial uses in forty- to sixty-foot deep lots on bridges lining the overpasses would completely remove the sense of crossing a freeway, restoring the urban form fully, so long as the overpasses are relatively flat and noise abatement is taken seriously.

intercomnut
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Re: Street, Road and Highway Projects

Postby intercomnut » October 24th, 2016, 7:44 am

Agreed. Even on Target Plaza, it took me a few times walking through to realize I was over 394. And that doesn't have much around it.

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Sacrelicio
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Re: Street, Road and Highway Projects

Postby Sacrelicio » October 24th, 2016, 8:48 am

talindsay wrote:Yes, I've suggested this before, and it's a technique that's used in other places. Even if you decide to *develop* over the freeway, you don't need to develop a full block - just line the sides of the bridges, and leave the center of the "block" open to the freeway below. It dramatically reduces costs because they can be kept narrow enough to not require ventilation equipment under the bridge, which still technically isn't a "tunnel" at that point.

I actually think developing just single-story commercial uses in forty- to sixty-foot deep lots on bridges lining the overpasses would completely remove the sense of crossing a freeway, restoring the urban form fully, so long as the overpasses are relatively flat and noise abatement is taken seriously.
I would think the noise abatement might be more effective when you have buildings doing some of the work to block the noise. Do you have any photos of other cities where this has been done?

talindsay
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Re: Street, Road and Highway Projects

Postby talindsay » October 24th, 2016, 12:55 pm

High Street in Columbus is the best example I can think of:
https://goo.gl/maps/99o9gKZvLSU2
https://goo.gl/maps/2LypUktfZv62

nBode
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Re: Street, Road and Highway Projects

Postby nBode » October 24th, 2016, 2:47 pm

^very cool!

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Sacrelicio
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Re: Street, Road and Highway Projects

Postby Sacrelicio » October 24th, 2016, 3:54 pm

talindsay wrote:High Street in Columbus is the best example I can think of:
https://goo.gl/maps/99o9gKZvLSU2
https://goo.gl/maps/2LypUktfZv62
Looks great, I wonder why we don't do this more often. You could cover an awful lot of freeway like this, without having to build it as a full lid/tunnel. Would work especially well for commercial areas.

Qhaberl
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Re: Street, Road and Highway Projects

Postby Qhaberl » October 24th, 2016, 4:49 pm

Anyone know when, or if, they are planning on replacing the old fashions street lights on Hennepin Avenue between Franklin Avenue and Lake Street? I've been downtown, and in my opinion, the new LED lights are much better. I know there's a huge debate as to whether they should be used. With that being said, I personally like them.


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HiawathaGuy
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Re: Street, Road and Highway Projects

Postby HiawathaGuy » October 26th, 2016, 3:18 pm

$105M for roads, bridges held up as Dayton and GOP squabble
http://finance-commerce.com/2016/10/105 ... -squabble/

At some point, the MN GOP will have to face the music, and I hope it hurts them, dearly.

mattaudio
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Re: Street, Road and Highway Projects

Postby mattaudio » October 26th, 2016, 3:39 pm

If the GOP and DFL fight over how to pay for all the road expansion they want, and nothing happens, who wins?
We all do.

twincitizen
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Re: Street, Road and Highway Projects

Postby twincitizen » November 17th, 2016, 8:32 am

Meeting coming up to discuss the 2018 reconstruction of 34th Avenue between 50th Street and 62: https://www.facebook.com/events/1499262 ... _tab=about

I assume this is a full reconstruction and not rehabilitation, but I'm not sure. The concrete roadway is in pretty rough shape.

Notably, 34th Avenue is not on the bike master plan (parallel routes are Nokomis/31st Ave and 43rd Ave; both are lower volume streets with sharrows & speed bumps). I could be persuaded either way whether or not a reconstructed street should have bike lanes. Intermittent blocks lack boulevards on one side, and the business district at 34th Av & 50th St has no boulevards and no trees whatsoever. 34th Ave carries the Route 7 through this entire stretch, and branches of the 22 and 515 down between 54th and 62. There's a lot of ridership down at 56th-58th St (Bossen Terrace low income housing). I could imagine a reconstructed street with parking on only one side (where possible) and much wider boulevards. Somewhat similar to Penn Ave S from 50th to 62. I'd weigh the potential for streetscape and pedestrian enhancements much more heavily than dedicated ROW to painted bike lanes.

One thing I'd like to see discussed is some changes in traffic control. Currently there are 4-way stop signs every other block, often at cross-streets with very little traffic. It's not ideal for drivers, bus riders, or bikes on 34th Ave. The stop signs keep it from becoming too much of a speedway, but are frustrating nonetheless. It's just not an appropriate traffic control at several of these intersections. My preference would be for a calmed street with fewer 4-way stops, with activated pedestrian crossing signals at some of those lesser intersections.

mattaudio
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Re: Street, Road and Highway Projects

Postby mattaudio » November 17th, 2016, 9:39 am

I'd like to see more mid-block marked crosswalks. On lower volume streets with one lane in each direction and fewer corners with ped-oriented land uses, it seems particularly beneficial to keep crosswalks away from intersections (conflict zone soup). I'm not sure the four way stops are a big deal (I bet you just dislike your slow drive from your house to Crosstown) but there are likely better alternatives. Finally, I wish MetroTransit was a little more engaged with these projects, pushing for things like far-side stop placement, stop consolidation, and coordinating amenity zones. From my experience working on county projects that impact transit, MT likes to be more of an afterthought and minimize the movement of their cheese as much as possible. That's not necessarily how we get the best outcomes for all users, including transit riders.

RailBaronYarr
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Re: Street, Road and Highway Projects

Postby RailBaronYarr » November 17th, 2016, 12:44 pm

Point of clarification.. the CIP map shows it going as far north as Minnehaha Parkway and down to 62, the fb event says 50th to 58th, and the CLIC planning document says Minnehaha Pkwy to 54th St. Interesting, not sure which is most accurate. But they do list it as reconstruction. Also, my comments below rely on google maps saying it's 58' from the back of each sidewalk.

I'm not sure that, even on a 2-lane/2-way street like this you can have significant traffic calming if the thru-lanes are still a straight shot. I'm not saying Hennepin Ave from 31st to 36th is a model for calming, but whenever you have long, uninterrupted stretches, drivers get complacent with the gas pedal and ignore pedestrians trying to cross. Maybe if you went with a 8/10/11/2 (parking/thru/thru/reaction zone) but alternate the on-street parking side every other block (or, hell, mid-block) with a fairly sharp chicane you'd get people to slow down a bit. Maybe paired with a curb bulb-out you wouldn't need the expensive pedestrian crossing signal. That cross-section would leave 13.5' on each side for a sidewalk + landscaping/amenity zone. Not great, but enough for 8' sidewalk and 5.5' for planting trees.

This is yet another example of a somewhat-important arterial in Minneapolis (freeway connection, bus routes, connecting commercial nodes, one of a few streets crossing the creek, etc) that barely has enough room for 1-side parking, mediocre sidewalks, and 2 modest travel lanes. Let alone talking about a protected bike facility, which really should be something this street has but there's no shot in hell even if you could eliminate parking entirely (would leave 9.5' lanes, no curb reaction).

amiller92
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Re: Street, Road and Highway Projects

Postby amiller92 » November 17th, 2016, 1:11 pm

Do we need parking? Kinda seems like Cleveland in St Paul where there's a bunch of off-street parking at the commercial nodes and then housing that also has off street parking, at least in theory. And no shortage of unused parking on the side streets.

Which isn't to say that people wouldn't put up a fight to keep it.

mattaudio
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Re: Street, Road and Highway Projects

Postby mattaudio » November 17th, 2016, 1:15 pm

Yes, we need parking. There's nothing more satisfying that slowing to a stop on a busy street and doing a very very slow parallel park job to block traffic for just a moment of brief zen.


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