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Re: Ayd Mill Road

Posted: March 28th, 2019, 7:04 am
by bubzki2
We need to be planning for the next time they spend money on it. It was probably too late in the game to prevent the mill & overlay even two years from now. We need to think big picture for the next phase.

Re: Ayd Mill Road

Posted: March 28th, 2019, 8:02 am
by twinkess
Yeah thats a weird one. I mean it has off ramps! Why is a city maintaining it?

Re: Ayd Mill Road

Posted: March 28th, 2019, 8:43 am
by amiller92

Re: Ayd Mill Road

Posted: March 28th, 2019, 10:16 am
by Tcmetro
I think Ayd Mill road is great for reducing traffic on surface streets. A good compromise would be to upgrade Ayd Mill and calm Snelling and Lexington with fewer lanes, maybe a Snelling bus lane, and high quality bike lanes.

Ayd Mill can have reconfigured intersections at Hamline, Grand, and St Clair, as well as serve as a through route to 35E from Midway and the new stadium.

Just my two cents on the issue.

Re: Ayd Mill Road

Posted: March 28th, 2019, 11:43 am
by SurlyLHT
There is a story in the Strib on this now. They had a picture of the road with all of the bridges...which made me wonder what the state of the bridges are?

Re: Ayd Mill Road

Posted: March 28th, 2019, 11:55 am
by seanrichardryan
Summit is being replaced this year. It dates from the 1880s & 1960s.
Selby was built in 1993.

Re: Ayd Mill Road

Posted: March 28th, 2019, 12:18 pm
by alexschief
Tcmetro wrote:
March 28th, 2019, 10:16 am
I think Ayd Mill road is great for reducing traffic on surface streets. A good compromise would be to upgrade Ayd Mill and calm Snelling and Lexington with fewer lanes, maybe a Snelling bus lane, and high quality bike lanes.

Ayd Mill can have reconfigured intersections at Hamline, Grand, and St Clair, as well as serve as a through route to 35E from Midway and the new stadium.

Just my two cents on the issue.
More study is needed to see who exactly is driving on Ayd Mill Road, but I suspect the effect is the opposite, I think it induces a lot of traffic in these neighborhoods. A significant portion of the users of this road (at least 11,000 ADT towards the Selby exit, another 6,000 get off at the Hamline exit, that's of a total of 24,400 who enter the road from 35W) appear to be commuters from Dakota County who are headed towards Minneapolis and take it as a shortcut because of the direct highway connection. I'm not sure why the city of St. Paul should even care about this use. Upgrading it (or worse, seizing land to complete the connection to I-94) would have negative impacts to environmental quality in these neighborhoods while adding little transportation benefit for the neighbors (in large part because there are local roads unconnected to the highway that duplicate AMR's function).

There should be, at the very least, no doubt that it is a significant cause of the huge traffic problems on Snelling Avenue from Selby to I-94. The Selby-Snelling intersection, in particular, is a nightmare for pedestrians, thanks largely to traffic from AMR. I personally know two people who were hit by cars in this area, it's a mess.

Remove the road, turn it into a park and greenway extension.

Re: Ayd Mill Road

Posted: March 28th, 2019, 12:55 pm
by Didier
I suspect that, in addition to those commuters going from Dakota County to Minneapolis, Ayd Mill also serves every person in a car who needs to go from eastbound I-94 to southbound I-35E, or vice versa.

Re: Ayd Mill Road

Posted: March 28th, 2019, 1:02 pm
by bubzki2
Seems obvious to say, but either connect it to I-94 via the frontage roads or cut off the 35E freeway-style entrance. I'm no proponent for it, but connecting this more directly to I-94 would add a badly-needed additional N-S arterial that doesn't use Cretin, Hamline, Snelling, Lex or Dale, which are all overburdened at peak times. Grade separated roads are probably more appropriate place for some of the Snelling congestion in particular.

Re: Ayd Mill Road

Posted: March 28th, 2019, 1:03 pm
by sdho
seanrichardryan wrote:
March 28th, 2019, 11:55 am
Summit is being replaced this year. It dates from the 1880s & 1960s.
Selby was built in 1993.
That's super cool -- I had never noticed that the abutments over the rail on Summit look much older than over AMR. Of course, the deck has all the beauty of 1960s/70s bridge decks, so you don't get any sense of the history from up top.

Re: Ayd Mill Road

Posted: March 28th, 2019, 1:03 pm
by sdho
bubzki2 wrote:
March 28th, 2019, 1:02 pm
Seems obvious to say, but either connect it to I-94 via the frontage roads or cut off the 35E freeway-style entrance. I'm no proponent for it, but connecting this more directly to I-94 would add a badly-needed additional N-S arterial that doesn't use Cretin, Hamline, Snelling, Lex or Dale, which are all overburdened at peak times. Grade separated roads are probably more appropriate place for some of the Snelling congestion in particular.
This. Finish AMR, and reduce lanes on Snelling. Take truck route off Snelling, and preferably take TH 51 designation off of Snelling (south of 94) too.

Re: Ayd Mill Road

Posted: March 29th, 2019, 6:16 am
by nate
I doubt it is just Dakota County commuters that use Ayd Mill. Maybe the slice of Dakota County that isn’t convenient to Hwy 52 or 77 use it to get to Mpls. Either way, I live in Midway and it is my route to anywhere in Bloomington or southwestern suburbs

Re: Ayd Mill Road

Posted: March 29th, 2019, 8:12 am
by alexschief
sdho wrote:
March 28th, 2019, 1:03 pm
bubzki2 wrote:
March 28th, 2019, 1:02 pm
Seems obvious to say, but either connect it to I-94 via the frontage roads or cut off the 35E freeway-style entrance. I'm no proponent for it, but connecting this more directly to I-94 would add a badly-needed additional N-S arterial that doesn't use Cretin, Hamline, Snelling, Lex or Dale, which are all overburdened at peak times. Grade separated roads are probably more appropriate place for some of the Snelling congestion in particular.
This. Finish AMR, and reduce lanes on Snelling. Take truck route off Snelling, and preferably take TH 51 designation off of Snelling (south of 94) too.
How would you propose to finish AMR? Whose homes would be demolished? Would you build a big overpass over Snelling or contain AMR in a tunnel? Is it the 1970's all over again?
nate wrote:
March 29th, 2019, 6:16 am
I doubt it is just Dakota County commuters that use Ayd Mill. Maybe the slice of Dakota County that isn’t convenient to Hwy 52 or 77 use it to get to Mpls. Either way, I live in Midway and it is my route to anywhere in Bloomington or southwestern suburbs
Dakota County commuters are not the only users, but it is pretty clear that highway-to-highway traffic makes up the bulk of traffic on the road. Removing AMR would likely have little effect on local users like yourself (play around in Google Maps, there is very little difference in local driving time whether you use AMR or a substitute arterial). The primary effect would be to change behavior of highway-to-highway commuters, whose second best options are not Snelling or Lexington, but different highway routes entirely.

The end result is that AMR is a pretty useless piece of infrastructure that does not really provide a significant transportation benefit to anybody, is expensive to maintain, causes extremely dangerous conditions on a small piece of local roads, and occupies valuable urban land that could be put towards a far more remarkable use.

Re: Ayd Mill Road

Posted: March 29th, 2019, 9:06 am
by Tcmetro
The previously proposed AMR connection to 94 was along Albert St, which is industrial.

Re: Ayd Mill Road

Posted: March 29th, 2019, 9:55 am
by LakeCharles
Even still, you'd have to tear down at least 6 businesses plus Higher Ground Academy, the National Khmer Legacy Museum, multiple fields at Concordia (and maybe even Sea Foam Stadium) and a few houses for the bridge over the tracks.

That's just a real tight geometry in general, going under Hamline, over the tracks, over Selby between it's bridge and the Hamline intersection, then over (or under) Marshall, and then a flyover bridge to get to westbound 94, which might require going over the Pascal bridge in order to avoid the Snelling off-ramp.

Re: Ayd Mill Road

Posted: March 29th, 2019, 10:49 am
by amiller92
nate wrote:
March 29th, 2019, 6:16 am
Either way, I live in Midway and it is my route to anywhere in Bloomington or southwestern suburbs
This is going to veer off topic, and yeah, I know I'm a weirdo who avoids suburbs, but those places are way closer to me than they are to you and I like never go there. Do you make a lot of trips from Midway to Bloomington or the southwest suburbs, and if so, why? Would you still make them if AMR wasn't there?

Re: Ayd Mill Road

Posted: March 29th, 2019, 10:55 am
by bubzki2
I don't think you'd have to take many houses to make a single-lane-each-way connection. Businesses should be able to relocate. Some collateral damage would occur, certainly. Barring a major sea change in mode share, though, I'd be reasonably in favor of getting the car sewer out of Snelling's prime real estate for businesses and housing. We should also allow for the very real chance that Ford site will indeed boost ADT since they're caving to all the car-centric facilities and design.

Re: Ayd Mill Road

Posted: March 29th, 2019, 1:35 pm
by Tcmetro
Cropped version from the EIS, available here:

https://amrtf.weebly.com/2005-eis.html

It's really a much better solution than Selby to Snelling to 94.

Re: Ayd Mill Road

Posted: March 29th, 2019, 1:52 pm
by bubzki2
One additional benefit to doing a major project like this would be that grade-separated bikeways could be added that finally bridge the rail ROW as well, as per the Bike Plan (via Pascal). Connecting to future Greenway extension, this could become a major cycling crossroads. How much, if at all, would this sway those opposed?

Re: Ayd Mill Road

Posted: March 29th, 2019, 1:56 pm
by alexschief
Tcmetro wrote:
March 29th, 2019, 1:35 pm
Cropped version from the EIS, available here:

https://amrtf.weebly.com/2005-eis.html

It's really a much better solution than Selby to Snelling to 94.
But far worse than removing the road entirely, so I'm really not sure why it would be considered.

St. Paul is a city with significant tax base issues. It's nuts that it is willingly maintaining what should be a state road in the first place. Removing taxable property from the rolls while further decreasing the value of homes adjacent to Ayd Mill Road, and all at great one-time and ongoing expense, is even nuttier.

In contrast, by removing the road, St. Paul and the state would not need to condemn any additional property, would be off the hook for future maintenance expenses for a highway on a creek-bed, and could provide significant property value and environmental value by investing in a park and greenway (which is not contingent upon Ayd Mill Road staying a highway in the slightest). The fact that St. Paul owns the road, while very dumb, could be a blessing in disguise because it gives the city the power and every incentive to make progress towards a solution for Ayd Mill Road that is more sustainable, and more in keeping with what we understand about the climate and travel demand in the year of our lord, 2019.

At this point, I'm only repeating myself, but:
The end result is that AMR is a pretty useless piece of infrastructure that does not really provide a significant transportation benefit to anybody, is expensive to maintain, causes extremely dangerous conditions on a small piece of local roads, and occupies valuable urban land that could be put towards a far more remarkable use.