Engineers make adjustments to River Road project - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Engineers make adjustments to River Road project

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LOUISVILLE, Ky (WDRB) – Widening a busy, but scenic, Louisville road is still a big debate for bicyclists and motorists who travel it every day.

At a Tuesday night meeting, residents, bicyclists, and members of the group “Citizens for a safer River Road,” met at the Louisville Water Tower to hear more from engineers about what the proposed widening project would include.

Nearly $2 million has been privately raised for the project which would widen the road by four-feet on each side and narrow the lanes by about one foot. It is all in an effort to make a larger shoulder for bicyclists and to prevent cars from having to swerve to avoid them.

Carol Hebel lives on River Road and says the bikers make it tough to share the road.

“The bikes are bad along there and it’s really bad when they bike three abreast and more or less give you the finger,” Hebel said.

The nearly five-mile long project would narrow from a shoulder of four feet to three feet or even less now that it’s been determined trees and power poles along the road won’t be moved.

Feedback from a meeting earlier this month is what made engineers take a second look and accommodate many concerns from residents.

“The first thing we looked at was no right away takes. We’re making sure we are inside the obstruction zone so any polls we have to come inside that so we are not going to impact any of those things,” said project engineer Mike Sewell.

The increase in bike traffic – and vehicle traffic – along River Road since the addition of the Lewis and Clark Bridge has moved up a project several years in the planning process.

The privately funded project would require government funds and could be completed by the end of the summer.

Once the money is completed raised, Community Foundation Louisville will submit the proposal for approval to Metro Council.

The entire project would take less than eight weeks to complete and engineers say at no time would River Road be completely closed to traffic during construction.

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