Minneapolis Bikeways Expansion Coming Your Way!

Hilary Reeves
Communications Manager, Transit for Livable Communities
The Twin Cities are has long been known for its extensive system of
off-road bike paths, from the Grand Rounds to the Cedar Lake trail, Luce
Line trail, and others. Minnesota also has several great "rails to
trails" bike paths around the state. All of these trails have given
Minneapolis a well-deserved reputation for being a great place for
recreational bicycling.

In 2010, the gears shifted a bit as Minneapolis was recognized by
Bicycling Magazine as the nation’s #1 bike-friendly city. What finally
put Minneapolis on top, bumping Portland from its 14-year perch, was not
only our great bike trails - including the Hiawatha LRT Trail, the Sabo
Bridge, and the amazing Midtown Greenway - but also the Cities’ growing
network of on-street bicycling options and an embrace by more and more
residents of bicycling as a viable and fun means of transportation - of
getting around.

Minneapolis is one of four locations around the country participating in
a federal non-motorized pilot program dedicated to expanding the
options for bicycling and walking. Bike Walk Twin Cities, a program of
Transit for Livable Communities, runs the Minneapolis area pilot - and
is investing upwards of $25 million in new facilities for biking and
walking. As a result of this funding and of allocations by local cities
and counties, there are several new on-street routes coming in 2010 and
2011. The new routes make it easier for cyclists and walkers to reach
important destinations. They connect with off-road bike trails. They
provide new ways to move between Minneapolis, St. Paul, Richfield,
Edina, Roseville, Golden Valley, and other cities in the metro area.

Here are some highlights from a new network of bikeways that cyclists
will be able to consider for getting around by the fall of 2012:

North-South bikeways in South Minneapolis

  • The Bryant Avenue bikeway from Loring Park to 50th Street.
  • A bikeway from the Longfellow neighborhood near Lake Street to the
    University of Minnesota and Augsburg. This route will connect to the
    Hiawatha LRT Trail and Midtown Greenway.
  • The "Southern Connector" from Minneapolis to Richfield, with bikeways on 17th, 18th and Bloomington Avenue.
  • 1st and Blaisdell Avenues - two one-way streets in South Minneapolis.

North-South routes in North and Northeast Minneapolis

  • A new route connecting to the Stone Arch Bridge, along Fillmore and 6th Avenues in Northeast.
  • In North Minneapolis, a bikeway will extend down two one-way streets, Emerson Avenue and Fremont Avenue.
  • A new bikeway will connect Falcon Heights, Lauderdale, and
    Roseville to both the St. Paul and Minneapolis campuses of the
    University of Minnesota, along Fairview Avenue North, Larpenteur Avenue,
    and Gortner Avenue.

East-West routes

  • Bikeways along Como Avenue in St. Paul and Minneapolis.
  • A bikeway will extend along Jefferson Avenue in St. Paul, connecting to Mississippi River Road bike paths at both ends.
  • In South Minneapolis, the new Riverlake Greenway will extend from I-35 to the Mississippi River.

The last American Community Survey, a part of the census, showed
Minneapolis at #2 in bicycle commuting, behind Portland. To be number 1
by all measures, Minneapolis and the whole Twin Cities region still has
room to crank it up.

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Bike Trails in the Twin Cities
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