Sunday, November 24, 2013

Help redesign the Menomonee River Parkway

Two years ago I wrote a post about the potholes on the Menomonee River Parkway. Since then condition of the parkway has only worsened. However, there is finally a plan--and, more important, money in the budget--not only for repaving but also for redesigning the parkway. About time!

All aspects of parkway design are to be considered, including "pedestrian access, bike and pedestrian safety, traffic flow, traffic calming, and aesthetics of the parkway" as well as runoff water quality. 

You can help! Please do. (Read on, or click here to go directly to the County Parks Menomonee River Renewal site.) 

The parks department held a public open house last week at Mount Mary University that was very well attended--by the public as well as a variety of officials.

Those who attended were able to fill out a survey and leave comments and suggestions. If you missed the open house, you have until December 6 to go to the County Parks Menomonee River Renewal website and fill out their survey. Be sure to include comments.

My suggestions were these:

The Parkway ought to be considered a park and not a highway. Therefore, bicycle and pedestrian access and safety should be considered more important than the speed or convenience of vehicular traffic. (I live right next to the parkway and I drive on it daily. I'm happy to slow down for bikes and pedestrians.)

Off-road bike paths should be included along the entire length of the parkway, as already exists in Hoyt Park.

Street design should encourage drivers to slow down. (Check out the maps provided on the website and share in the horror when you learn how many accidents there have been all along the parkway.)

Except for invasive species, existing trees should be preserved. Let's not clearcut the parkway and then plant new seedlings (as we've seen done elsewhere in Wauwatosa!)

The wild sections of the parkway along the river are among my favorite places to walk. These should be preserved and not cleared or paved. They are the urban wildernesses that our children and grandchildren need be able to explore.

Go to Menomonee River Renewal today and make your voice heard. Let's get this right, shall we?

Parkway between Burleigh and Hwy 100

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