Bike lanes will be coming to sections of an east-west thoroughfare that runs from downtown Dallas into Lakewood.
On Jan. 23, the Dallas City Council approved the reconstruction of a roughly 3-mile stretch of the thoroughfare, known by three different names: Main Street, Columbia Avenue and Abrams Road. The Columbia Avenue and Abrams Road portions will receive bike lanes in the right-of-way while the Main Street portion will not, according to documents in the city council’s agenda.
Main Street from Canton Street in Deep Ellum to Peak Street will be reduced from a six-lane divided road to a four-lane undivided road. The rest of Main Street — from Peak Street to Columbia Avenue — will also be reduced from six lanes to four but will remain divided, according to city documents.
Columbia Avenue from Main Street to Abrams Road will also be slimmed down from a six-lane to a four-lane divided road. Bicycle lanes will be added along this stretch.
Abrams Road from Columbia Avenue to Richmond Avenue will keep the same number of lanes, but the right-of-way will be expanded from 80 feet to 100 feet to add on the bicycle lanes.
The entire project is expected to cost $8 million and will be fully funded through a streets and transportation bond program voters approved in 2017, according to the bond program’s website.
Designs for the Main Street and Columbia Avenue portions of this project are expected to be completed by the end of the year. Construction is estimated to begin in July 2020 and end in September 2021, according to the website.
The Abrams Road portion of the project is expected to have complete designs by July of this year. Construction is planned to begin in May 2020 and end in May 2022, according to the website.
City Council Member Philip Kingston — who represents District 14, which includes Lakewood and East Dallas — applauded the city’s efforts and the pooling of resources needed to make this project happen.
Kingston said the widening of roads happened years ago without consideration for people living in the neighborhoods the roads traveled through.
“Today, we’re starting the process of undoing a 60-year-old mistake,” Kingston said at the Jan. 23 meeting. “We need to be mindful of putting the people of the neighborhoods before the people traveling through them at high speeds.”
The road reconstruction is expected to address concerns about speeding and lack of walkability along the thoroughfare, according to city documents.
Two public meetings were held before this plan was placed in front of the Dallas City Council. City Council Member Adam Medrano — who represents District 2, which includes Deep Ellum and East Dallas — said hundreds of residents showed up to those meetings.
Medrano told council members that this project was not his idea, but one brought to him by the neighborhoods he represents.
“I’m definitely supportive (of the project) and want to move forward,” he told the city council before they voted.
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