After multiple community meetings, Hennepin County has decided not to install cycle tracks along Minnehaha Avenue.
A cycle track is a protected bike lane that is separate from vehicle traffic. In the Minnehaha Ave design, the cycle track would have been protected by a curb and parking spots.
Bike Lane Plans
Instead, the County has voted to move ahead with on-street bike lanes that will be built as part of the Minnehaha Avenue reconstruction project scheduled to start in 2015.
According to the Minneapolis Bicycle Coalition, the County has committed to installing a bike lane that follows national best practices, including a two foot painted buffer that will separate vehicle traffic from cyclists along much of the roadway. Specific details about the bike lane design will be presented at two community meetings next week.
Cycle Track Support
The Minneapolis Bicycle Coalition was vocal in it’s support of the cycle track throughout the entire design process. Executive director Ethan Fawley told MPR, “We were supportive of a protected bike lane on Minnehaha, very supportive, but we wanted it to be designed right so it would be a good asset for the community for the next 50-60 years. We really wanted a protected bike lane design that would have no impacts on trees, no impacts on parking, no impacts on traffic.”
The Coalition reported that of the 130 people who filled out comment cards at the July public meetings, 89 were in support of cycle tracks. Additionally, 900 people signed postcards in support of the protected bikeway.