High Priority Projects List: MoDOT announces $13 million in bike/ped projects

Here is a story about how your support of the Missouri Bicycle & Pedestrian Federation and bicycle and pedestrian advocacy in Missouri has made a dramatic improvement for bicycling and walking--and how MoDOT is changing for the better.

Complete Streets advocacy
Advocacy groups across Missouri, led by the Missouri Bicycle and Pedestrian Federation, have been working for several years for a statewide Complete Streets policy.  A statewide Complete Streets policy is a top goal in MoBikeFed's Vision of Bicycling and Walking in Missouri and in the draft Trailmap for Bicycling and Walking developed in the mid 2000s.

We have supported a Complete Streets bill in the Missouri General Assembly and also encouraged MoDOT to adopt Complete Streets policies through their internal engineering policies.

And MoDOT has come a long way--in the mid 1990s, the agency's entire bicycle and pedestrian policy was only a few sentences long.  MoDOT's bicycle and pedestrian policies were improved dramatically in the early 2000s.  Under the leadership of current MoDOT Nonmotorized Transportation Engineer, Melissa Anderson, the pedestrian and Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) policies have been improved again in the past eighteen months.

However, MoDOT is still some distance from adopting a true Complete Streets policy, which requires thoroughgoing consideration of bicyclists, pedestrians, transit users, and people with disabilities as part of the planning and design of every project.

MoBikeFed meets with MoDOT leadership
In December 2009 when members of Missouri Bicycle & Pedestrian Federation and PedNet met with MoDOT Chief Engineer Kevin Keith (who has since become the MoDOT Director) and other MoDOT officials.

Kevin Keith, MoDOT Director
Kevin Keith, MoDOT Director

At that meeting, Keith proposed that bicycle and pedestrian groups across the state work together to create a prioritized list of bicycle and pedestrian projects of statewide significance on the MoDOT system.  We would then submit those projects to MoDOT, who would take the project ideas through their own planning process with their planning partners around the state, add to or modify this list as necessary, create a prioritized list of bike/ped projects of statewide significance, find the funding in from their existing funding sources, and build the projects over the next five years or so.

Engineers are practical--they like to build things. Both sides saw this as the most tangible way possible that MoDOT could express its support for the importance of bicycle and pedestrian projects--by actually building a number of important projects.

People from around Missouri submit their ideas for important bicycle & pedestrian projects
Last spring, the Missouri Bicycle and Pedestrian Federation reached out to bicycle and pedestrian organizations across the state to encourage them to submit project ideas and create local teams that evaluated, scored, and prioritized the projects in their areas.

Many of you became involved at that point--nearly 300 projects were submitted and over 20 teams of local bicyclists, pedestrians, and advocates from different parts of Missouri met to refine, score, and prioritize the projects from their part of the state.

We submitted the list of 284 prioritized project ideas to MoDOT in April 2010.  MoDOT then put the project ideas through their own process, working with their planning partners--metropolitan planning organizations, regional planning commissions, and municipalities across Missouri--to evaluate and refine the project ideas and create the best possible final list.

MoDOT announces $13 million in statewide Enhancements projects
In March, 2011, MoDOT announced a list of 13 bicycle and pedestrian projects totalling $13 million, from all parts of Missouri.

Best of all, MoDOT found a new source of funding for these projects--a statewide funding source that has been used for other projects for the past several years.

Our kudos go to MoDOT Director Kevin Keith for having the vision to move forward a list of important and representative bicycle and pedestrian projects across the state, to MoDOT staff for working hard to evaluate projects and great an outstanding final list of noteworthy projects, and to all of you across Missouri for giving us your input, your ideas, and your time and commitment to make these projects a reality.

Many individuals and nearly every bicycle and pedestrian organization across Missouri helped make the High Priority Project list a reality--and now your work has paid off in 13 key bicycle and pedestrian projects.

And if we work together--and help MoDOT survive its current, huge funding shortfalls--this is only the beginning.

Project List

These 13 enhancement projects were added to the

2011-2015 Statewide Transportation Improvement Program March 2, 2011,
by the Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission.

Boone County, Route K

  • This project adds shoulders on both sides of Route K for bicycle lanes from the Katy Trail in McBaine to Route 163 in Columbia.  It provides connectivity to the south end of a shared-use path along the west side of Route 163 that extends into the region’s bike route and trail system. Project cost: $1,874,000.

Cape Girardeau County, Route 74

  • This project improves bicycle-pedestrian facilities at two locations.  One is at Shawnee Parkway from the Emerson bridge to a commercialized area west of Cape, and the other is at Route K from Silver Springs Road to Kinsgshighway.  The improvements include a path, lane striping, signing and bridge over Cape LaCrois Creek and provide connectivity to the Trans-America Trail and the Mississippi River Trail touring routes.  Project cost: $1,536,000.

Greene County, Loop 44

  • This project features pedestrian crossing improvements at seven signalized intersections on Chestnut Expressway between Broadway Avenue and Fremont Avenue in Springfield.  The safety improvements benefit connectivity to residential areas, shopping, education and government institutions, transit and places of employment.  Project cost: $340,000.

Greene County, Route 744

  • In Springfield, this project provides for continuous sidewalks including ADA accommodations on both sides of Kearney Street from Kansas Expressway (Route 13) to Glenstone Avenue (Loop 44).  The improvements benefit connectivity to area shopping centers and transit stops.  Project cost: $996,000.

Jackson County, Route 670

  • This safety improvement project provides sidewalks on both east and west sides of the Broadway bridge in downtown Kansas City.  The bridge is the main gateway between north side businesses and residential areas and the south side new performing arts center.  The project will also construct a bridge fence – 50 percent of which is being paid by the city.  Enhancement project cost: $752,000.

Jackson County, Route 150

  • This project connects gaps in a shared-use path on the south side of Route 150 from Route 71 to Horridge Road in Lee’s Summit.  Existing facilities will connect the trail to Route 291 and continue through the new 71/150 interchange.  MoDOT is partnering with Kansas City to use local funds for continuing the trail west along Route 150, connecting to the new Botts Road and Thunderbird Road interchanges.  Project cost: $1,853,000.

Jackson County, Route 78

  • New sidewalks and existing sidewalk improvements with transit routes from I-435 to Route 291 in Independence are the project benefits.  The improvements complement the MoDOT pavement project on Route 78 that replaces drainage grates and adds Share the Road signs.  Project cost: $833,000.

Jackson County, Wyandotte Bridge

  • This project includes improving drainage grates, sidewalk conditions and accessibility to the Wyandotte Bridge over I-70 in downtown Kansas City.  This crossing is the signed route for the Riverfront Heritage Trail and connects the River Market area to businesses and residential areas.  Project cost: $125,000.

Phelps County, Route 63

  • This project provides connectivity between the state university, residential areas and businesses by upgrading sidewalks on both sides of Route 63 from I-44 south to 10th Street in Rolla.  Project cost: $454,000.

St. Louis County, Missouri 267

  • New sidewalks will provide connectivity to residential areas, shopping, transit, places of employment and a high school.  The installation is on theeast side of Route 267 south of Reavis Barracks to Route 61-67 (Lindbergh Blvd.) intersection in Lemay and Mehlville.  Project cost: $1,026,000.

St. Louis City, Missouri 30 and Interstate 44

  • This project improves pedestrian and sidewalk facilities on both sides of Route 30 from the city limits to I-55, and I-44 from Shrewsbury Avenue to the I-44/I-55 interchange.  The improvement benefits connectivity to residential areas, shopping, places of employment and a popular bus route. Project cost: $766,000.

St. Louis County, Route U

  • This project will install sidewalks on both sides of Route U from West Florissant Avenue to Woodrow Avenue in Northwoods, Pasadena Hills, Country Club Hills and Jennings.  It provides connectivity to residential areas, shopping, transit, places of employment and a high school.  Project cost: $1,489,000.

Taney County, Various Locations

  • In coordination with Branson, the project provides various pedestrian improvements in the city.  These include filling a sidewalk gap along the north side of Route 76 from 6th Street to Veterans’ Boulevard, replacing a section of shoulder on the Route 76 strip and improving pedestrian crossings at a variety of intersections.  Project cost:  $941,000.