A proposed bike lane on Bogue Street is inching closer to a reality, as the team behind the proposal updated members of the council at a meeting on July 16.
The team behind the proposal presented at the Traffic Commission meeting the previous evening, on July 15, and presented to the council an update on the project, which has tentative installation date of mid-August.
“We’re redoing the trail from Farm Lane to Bogue,” said project manager Tressa Wahl. “We studied it long and hard, and we came up with this solution, and that’s why we’re rolling with it.”
“We looked at a lot of other options, too,” said team member Robert Rayl, of RS Engineering, LLC, “and this was the safest one.”
A pilot program of a new bike lane on Bogue Street was approved and supported by council at the July 16 meeting. The team aims to complete installation mid-August, with an October removal. After data is collected and analyzed concerning the temporary lane, discussions will be made regarding whether or not a permanent bike lane will be installed.
“The big picture is getting people from off campus onto campus with the fewest injuries we possibly can,” said team member Dave Wilber, landscape architect with Infrastructure Planning and Facilities at MSU. The project’s ultimate goal is to “…reduce accidents. Safety.”
With safety as the primary concern, it was pivotal to pilot the program on Bogue Street, according to O’Donnell.
“We applied for some state funding for the completion of the MSU River Trail between Farm and Bogue,” said Stephanie O’Donnell, Traffic Engineer and MSUPD. “This was sort of a linchpin piece, this intersection.”
Not only will the proposed bike lane increase the safety of cyclists and pedestrians, Wahl said it will have little impact on vehicular traffic.
“We’re only impacting one lane of vehicular traffic,” said Wahl, “instead of impacting a lane on both bounds.”
The team said they are excited to begin installation of the bike lane, and are thankful for the city of East Lansing working together with MSU to make the project possible.
“That relationship didn’t always exist, and I think all of us have tried to cultivate improvements there,” said O’Donnell. “I think it’s very positive, because what you don’t see behind the scenes is that both chiefs of police (ELPD and MSUPD) supported this. I mean, a lot of other support went into this before we even brought it to council. I think it’s very promising that everybody in this space today and everybody behind all of this were supportive of it. That’s encouraging.”