City Engineer Jon Dienst visited with Tri-State Trail Vision Board Members on August 26, 2019 to report on the city’s work regarding trails. He began his presentation with the City Council’s Goal-Setting 2034 Vision Statement from August 14, 2019. In 15 years, the City Council would like to see the city preserve “our Masterpiece on the Mississippi” via a “strong diverse economy and expanding connectivity.” Within the next five years, the city wants to have a sustainable environment and a connected community. This includes “equitable transportation, technology infrastructure, and mobility” as well as “diverse arts, culture, parks, and recreation experiences and activities.”
To meet these goals, Dienst then mentioned the following items as part of the fiscal years 2019 and 2020 pedestrian and bicycle projects undertaken by the city.
- Chavenelle Road Hike/Bike Trail will be completed during the spring and summer of 2020. The project will be a 10’ wide concrete off-street trail from the NW Arterial to Seippel Road. The first phase, the west end, will be constructed by Midwest Concrete beginning in March 2020.
- The City is about to release a request-for-proposal (RFP) for the East-West Corridor project. This includes three roundabouts in series on University Avenue at Pennsylvania, Asbury, and Loras. The engineers anticipate construction to start in 3 to 4 years. On-street bike lanes will likely be considered for this project. The RFP will be released this fall.
- HUD Resiliency Projects on 17th Street/W. Locust and 22nd St./Kaufmann Ave.: The phases on both corridors between Elm and Central Avenue are complete. The City is working on Kaufmann Avenue from Central to Main Street. Completion of this phase is expected to be spring 2020. Additional phases on 17th/W. Locust and on Kaufmann Avenue are in the design stage and require additional funding, which the City is pursuing.
- Bee Branch Trail from 12th to 16th Street. We are working on a multi-phase trail project from 12th near the Alliant solar field to 16th Street near Dairy Queen. The first phase will be the 16th Street/Sycamore intersection south towards the solar field.
- 2021 Budget is looking at a Major Streets Improvement Plan, a Top Priority item for the council over the next few years. This includes looking at streets that have been annexed into the city like Roosevelt Street, 32nd Street, Cedar Cross Road, etc. that need sidewalks and perhaps trails.
- Dienst always asks us for suggestions where there are “pinch points.” Where can the city improve better biking access? We suggested: What will be access to the new SW Arterial and Old Davenport Road from Key West Drive? Is there a way to proceed safely up Kaufmann Avenue via Valeria Street and then to the Kaufmann and Kane intersection? Or will a wide enough trail be along all of Kaufmann Avenue?
- The City has invested around $350,000 in pedestrian ramp projects over the summer. This is a federal Department of Justice requirement when doing pavement overlay projects.
- Let the City Engineer’s Department know of good places to develop better biking routes. He is also looking for “bike boulevard” opportunities. This is described as long city streets that run with few cross streets, relatively low traffic counts, and a wide enough width to promote safe biking. One example would be upon exiting the Bee Branch and turning left onto Garfield Street. Should we develop a long street like Garfield into a bike boulevard? Would making a return loop south on Lincoln be feasible?
The MyDbq App is available for questions, comments, reporting of potholes and dangerous cracks, and other problems. Download the app on phones and it will record the GPS coordinates of the problem area and be sent to the appropriate city office.
Thanks to Jon, the City’s Engineering, Urban Planning, and Leisure Services Departments for cooperatively working together to secure funding, provide a vision, and create enjoyable recreational opportunities for Dubuque-area residents.