• Kim Norvell
  • Mon April 02 2018
  • Posted Apr 2, 2018

(BIKEIOWA NOTE: This is a popular corridor used by cyclists)

Big changes could be coming to abusy west-side road.

Des Moines and Windsor Heights are considering reducingUniversity Avenueto three lanes between 42nd and 73rd streets.

That stretchcurrently fluctuates between four and five lanes.

The change would leave one vehicle lane in each direction and a center turn lane. It would also openup space for bike lanes, whichare being considered.

A feasibility study for the Des Moines segment —42nd to63rd streets — is due next month.

The change is being considered as Des Moinesprepares to remove a decaying pedestrian bridge over University Avenue nearWindsor Elementary and St. Theresa schools, said Jennifer McCoy, the city's traffic engineer. It will be replaced with a crosswalk.

The pedestrian bridge will come down next summer. The lane reductioncould happen at that time.

"Right now we’re trying to see if it’s feasible," McCoy said.

Windsor Heights is further along. A committee of residents and business ownersrecommended the three-lane configuration to the City Council in March.

The group also recommended a 12-foot-wide bike and pedestrian trail— not an on-street bike lane—for the south side of University Avenue.

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