Recap of Atwood meeting and this week's calendar

Atwood meeting. Photo credit: Travis Youman

Atwood meeting. Photo credit: Travis Youman

The upcoming week is a bit slow for meetings, but there are a couple of road and path maintenance projects that may affect your travel this week. And last week featured an important public information meeting to gather input and outline plans for the reconstruction of Atwood Ave in a few years. The reconstruction will be from Fair Oaks to Cottage Grove Road. 

This update of the Atwood meeting comes from India Viola:

A good mix of people showed up to the Oct 4 Atwood Avenue Reconstruction Public Input Meeting, including many Madison Bikes members, city traffic engineering staff, alders from District 6 & 15, representatives from the consulting design firm, MSA Professional Services, and the press.  The construction is slated to happen in 2021, and this was the first of several public input sessions that will be held in the upcoming year.  If we want substantial change to the cross-section of the 1.13 mile stretch of Atwood between S. Fair Oaks Ave and Cottage Grove Rd we are going to have to show up, speak up, and be the source of positive ideas and change that we want to see implemented.  Thanks to everyone who showed up at this first meeting. It was wonderful to hear folks express their thoughts and concerns to the people in charge of this design. Collectively, we make a difference!

The proposed designs, although they were quite preliminary, had their ups and downs.  

  • No on-street bike lanes, protected or otherwise, were proposed along the entire length. 

  • No bike facilities or street cross-section changes were proposed between S. Fair Oaks Ave and Oakridge.

  • An off-street multi-use path, 10 ft wide between Oakridge Ave and Walter St, and 8 ft wide between Walter St and Cottage Grove Rd was proposed rather than on-street cycling accommodations.  The current sidewalk conflicts that exist between pedestrians, who travel at 2-4 mph and cyclists, who travel at 8-25 mph will remain on such a narrow multi-use path.

  • City staff's primary justification for having an 8 ft wide section of multi-use path south of Walter St. was space limitations with the parking lots of existing lakeside condominium developments. Although the city has the 8 ft wide segment crossing multiple driveways that currently have walls obstructing the line-of-sight, this narrow stretch of multi-use path was still billed as a protected bicycle facility.

  • The Lake Monona Loop between Lakeland Ave and the Cap City Trail will be improved with a new multi-use path on the west side of Atwood Ave. Unfortunately this doesn’t help bike commuters traveling between Monona and points northeast or east of Walter St. As Mark Shahan pointed out, the proposed plan asks cyclists traveling north on Atwood to make multiple clumsy street crossings to remain on the planned bike facilities.

  • The excuse the city gave for maintaining a 3-lane motor vehicle roadway vs a 2-lane was maintaining the geometry of the Fair Oaks, Walter, and Cottage Grove intersections so they could keep the light phasing as it is and can keep costs down by doing as little work as possible. As we all know, good design is invaluable, and maintaining the current cross-section of Atwood would be a terrible waste of an opportunity to safely accommodate cyclists and pedestrians along this mile-long stretch of lakeside roadway.

  • The design team was undecided on the final intersection geometry at Atwood Ave and Walter St. The options were to keep it as a signalized intersection or to convert it to a multi-lane roundabout. Both design choices have their various benefits and faults.

  • The rightmost inbound lane that is a rarely-utilized off-peak parking lane between Oakridge Ave and S. Fair Oaks Ave will be widened to 12 ft north of Oakdridge Ave, and extend to Walter St south of Oakridge Ave as an 11 ft off-peak parking lane.

  • Parking lanes were also proposed along the southbound stretch of Atwood Ave by Olbrich Park. This would take up valuable real estate that could otherwise be bike lanes or public terrace!

If you have questions or comments about this project, the following are contacts:

Chris Petykowski, Principal Engineer, City of Madison Traffic Engineering Dept: cpetykowski@cityofmadison.com

Jaime Kurten, Senior Project Engineer at MSA Professional Services:  jkurten@msa-ps.com

Brad Bruun, City of Monona DPW Project Manager: bbruun@ci.monona.wi.us

Marsha Rummel, District 6 Alderperson: district6@cityofmadison.com
DAvid Ahrens, District 15 Alderperson: district15@cityofmadison.com

 

Coming up this week:

Monday, October 9, at 6:00 pm Madison Bikes board will meet at the Public Library, 201 W Mifflin St.

Also starting Monday and lasting until Wednesday, the SW Path will be closed from S. Prospect to Breese Terrace so the path can be resurfaced. There will be a detour that will take bicyclists onto surface streets, including lanes coned off on Regent and Monroe St. More information on this project and a map of the detour can be found on the city project page

Tuesday, October 10 Bike-tober Bicycle Mixer. Ian’s Pizza on State Street 5pm -7pm.  (map)

Who loves Ian's?! Who loves bikes?! Who loves all the gracious employees who give you Bicycle Benefits in Madison?! We are celebrating all of it with a FREE SLICE NIGHT for bike riders and staff of Bicycle Benefits locations in Madison! Come meet other bike riders, cool people and get energized with great calories and bike banter. How do you prove that you are a biker in Madison? Well, if you haven't heard, Bicycle Benefits is a program where you get a little $5 sticker for your helmet and show it at businesses everywhere to get a discount or reward for riding your bike there. Here are all the places that it works in Madison. If you or your friends don't have stickers yet, no sweat, they have them Ian's Pizza Madison Maybe MORE EXCITING! This event counts as a "special event" if you are playing Madison Bike Bingo 2017 so bring your card or pick one up on Tuesday night.

On Wednesday, the Transit and Parking Commission will consider the proposal by Freewheel Bicycles to operate the bike center at Judge Doyle Square. A new building is planned for the site where the Government East parking ramp is currently located on E. Doty St. As part of the redevelopment, there will be a bike center featuring secure bike parking, lockers, showers, and a repair shop. Freeweel will be offering many of the same services they have at their Park St location, as well as classes. All the details of the proposal that will be discussed can be found here as part of the meeting schedule. The TPC meeting is at 5:00 pm at the Central Library. This item will be coming to the Pedestrian/Bicycle/Motor Vehicle Commission later, so you will have another chance to weigh in. 

Sunday, October 15, 9:00am – 6:00pm Middleton Off-Road Ride

5191 Vosen Rd, Middleton, WI 53562, USA (map)

Ten Miles West of Madison, all off-road on private land otherwise not accessible to riding Adults: $35 Kids: $20 The ride will start at 10am, but everyone should be unloaded, lined up, and ready to go before the riders meeting at 9:45am. We suggest getting to the ride between 9am and 9:30am. Lunch won't be provided, but complimentary rest stops will be available during the ride. The only way to register to ride is to contact Dan. You can contact Dan Fargen by Email:ddkj@td.net Phone: (608)445-8288

If you have a meeting or event that you would like to have included on the Madison Bikes Calendar, drop us an email.

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