The Three Rivers Park District will be helping the City of St. Louis Park pay for improvements to the Beltline Boulevard bike crossing, which has been the site of four accidents in the last three years and one biker death.
The city and the park district will each pay roughly $68,000 toward the project, which will curve and veer the crossing toward the north. This will force bikers to naturally slow down as they approach Beltline, plus it will allow them to see oncoming traffic because they'd run parallel to it as the path curves.
In addition, the Beltline median will be widened, allowing bikers to more easily stop and wait for traffic to pass before they finish crossing the road. (See attached PDFs for a detailed look at the plan)
Construction is scheduled to begin in early September and wrap up by mid-October. The city will oversee the project, with Midwest Asphalt doing the work.
City Council approved the cost-share by a 5-2 vote on Monday night, about a month after . Council members Sue Sanger and Anne Mavity both voted against the measure on Monday, saying the project isn't the right fix for the area.
“Drivers are confused as to whether they should stop or not stop," Sanger said. “I don’t think the way this is designed will address (that).”
Mavity said for the same cost, the city could paint the crosswalk and install biker-controlled traffic signals, which she believes would be a better solution.