Mon April 21, 2014
Public hearing on Central Parkway bicycle lanes
Last November, City Council approved a plan to install protected bike lanes on Central Parkway that would eventually stretch from Elm Street downtown to Ludlow Avenue near Cincinnati State.
The city was ready to award a contract for the first phase of the work. But Mayor John Cranley and some new council members have questions about the project.
Vice Mayor David Mann chairs Council's Neighborhoods Committee, which will hold a hearing on the issue Monday.
“The options that were considered, the one that’s been recommended and would be implemented and what the anticipated impact is on traffic patterns,” Mann said. “If they go forward there will be rather large bike lanes on either side of Central Parkway, traffic lanes will be reduced most of the time. That’s a heavily traveled road that I happen to use a lot and I just want to make sure we know what we’re doing.”
This would be the city's first protected bike lanes with plastic barriers to keep vehicles out of the lanes. Current bicycle lanes in the city have painted pavement markings but no barriers.
The first phase would construct protected bike lanes this year from Elm Street in downtown to Marshall Avenue in Clifton. Another section could be completed next year between Clifton Hill Avenue and Ludlow. The final piece cannot be finished until the Ohio Department of Transportation completes construction work on the I-75 project.
Supporters say the protected bike lanes would encourage more people to ride bicycles and make them safer. Besides concerns about traffic, opponents fear it will reduce parking along Central Parkway creating problems for businesses.
The project is mostly funded with a $500,000 grant from the Transportation Alternatives Program awarded by the Ohio-Kentucky-Indiana Regional Council of Governments.
Monday’s hearing starts at 2 p.m. at City Hall.