Waterloo sets plans for bike lanes in motion - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Waterloo sets plans for bike lanes in motion

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The city of Waterloo is embracing the idea of a more accessible downtown by turning Park Avenue into a street with bike lanes. 

The Waterloo city council approved a plan during Monday's meeting to reduce the four driving lanes in Park Avenue to just two. Condensing the driving lanes, will allow the city to add two bike lanes going in both directions.

Park avenue is no stranger to cyclists. Right now, navigating the bustling street could prove dangerous for some traveling through the city. 

Cyclist Deyton Love says he's looking forward to the new bike lanes. 

"That's a great idea," said Love. "For one-it's going to be much more safer."

Love, like many cyclists, says he plays it safe by only riding on the sidewalk. 

The city plans to take the stretch of Park avenue from South street to Franklin and reduce it from four lanes to two. In it's place, the city will add two new protected bike lanes, which will be designated just for cyclists.

Main Street Waterloo Director Tavis Hall says it's a project that's been in the works for quite a while. 

"We've got five trails down here," said Hall. "It only makes sense that we're connecting all of them. And so for folks to be able to go from SingleSpeed to Jamesons and safely travel throughout the district."

Hall hopes the new bike lanes will not only better connect city streets but also draw in more local business.

SingleSpeed Brewery, who has invested in the idea of sustainability by breathing new life into the old Wonder Bread building, is happy to see the city taking more steps to go green. 

"In the future a lot more local-dense city populations are going to be more bike-centered," said SingleSpeed General Manager Kegan Bakken. "We believe in pushing the boundary forward as far as reducing the carbon footprint. It's not just us that are drawing people in. We just happen to be a place that serves food and beer that you can take advantage of while you're out at these different events going on downtown."

Waterloo Interim Public Works Director Sandie Greco says the cost for the expected update will be about $10,000. Greco says the cost will include removing existing lanes and painting in new ones. 

The project is expected to start next week. 

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