4-to-1 vote leads to more room on the road for Fargo bicyclistsFARGO, N.D. (WDAY TV) - After months of debate, a decision on bike lanes on two major arterials in north Fargo has finally been made. Drivers, get ready to share the road. But this vote didn't come without a little skepticism.
FARGO, N.D. (WDAY TV) - After months of debate, a decision on bike lanes on two major arterials in north Fargo has finally been made. Drivers, get ready to share the road. But this vote didn't come without a little skepticism.
It's one of the biggest arterial roads in North Fargo and in about a month it will be open. But it won't be a mostly three lane road like before. This time, 10th Street North will have two lanes, a buffer zone, and a bike lane.
With a vote of 4-1 at tonight's city commission meeting, not everyone's happy about it.
Mayor Dennis Walaker, Fargo: “There seems to be extreme disconnect between the bikers and the drivers in our community. Moving forward at this rate seems to be a little hasty.”
Many of us may remember this exchange from April.
Dave Piepkorn, Fargo: “Then you put a bike route on the truck route?”
Jeremy Gordon, Fargo Traffic Engineer: “Yes, 10th and University are as well.”
Piepkorn: “I don't know how to describe it, but if you worked for me, you wouldn't work for me"
But with Dave Piepkorn voted off the City Commission, Mayor Walaker was the only dissenting vote and the two-wheel controversy came to a rather quiet close.
Bike lanes will be coming to University Drive and 10th Street North, connecting NDSU and downtown for the biking community.
Aaron Feickert, NDSU Graduate Student: “Students want and need a good route downtown and this is it.”
Brad Wimmer, Fargo City Commissioner: “It's the wave of the future as I've been to 10 or 15 major cities of our size. A lot of them have this and they are sharing the road.”
But this isn't like the original proposal. These lanes will include a 2-foot striped buffer zone instead of a simple dividing line. The lanes will go from 12th Avenue North to 17th Avenue North on 10th street and 12th Avenue North to 19th Avenue North on University Drive.
Jeremy Gordon: “They gather more respect on the street rather than on the sidewalk. And if we're going to put them on the street, we can give them a little.”
And after countless hours of research, meetings and more research, city traffic engineer Jeremy Gordon is just excited to close the book on this issue.
Gordon: “I've learned a lot in the last 5-to-6 months on bike lanes, probably more than I ever wanted to know. But at least now I know what I know and have some convictions behind it.”
The 10th street North project and all its new striping is expected to be completed by September 15th. The final cost to restripe the road, about $150,000.
Eventually the road will feature a buffered bike lane all the way to 4th avenue.