City adamant Riverside Drive will remain two lanes

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Thursday evening, an angry crowd told city leaders they want Riverside Drive back to four lanes alongside Tom Lee Park.

This was the second input meeting after the changes were made.

The road is now one lane in each direction, with two lanes dedicated to biking, jogging and walking.

Many say the road is now dangerous for driving, and several accidents have already taken place.

There’s also the question of whether the bike lanes are being used.

Most people at the meeting want all four lanes of traffic returned, but city officials did not include that as an option in any of the four alternative plans presented:

Alternative plan A would include bike lanes closer to the river and street parking against the bluff, with two lanes of traffic between them.

Alternative plan B would have bike lanes closer to the river, with a parking lane separating them from two lanes of traffic.

Alternative plan C would have bike lanes on both sides of Riverside, with two traffic lanes in the middle.

Alternative plan D would include a middle turn lane, with bike lanes closer to the river.

8 comments

    • Gonebabygone

      I don’t think they have done any real studies. I think they made their minds up and are just going through the motions to try and seem like they are listening.

      I have not personally seen cyclists using the bike lanes and I’m in the park or on the river walk above it daily. I do see cyclists use the park paths and river walk above as they always have been. There must be federal money or grants tied to the plans they have proposed. I’m beginning to believe that the only way we will have repaving or road repair will be if we use federal funds that come with required bike lanes.

  • Skeptic

    Why give up ANY lanes for cars. Add a parking lane to Tom Lee Park on the river side of the street. Put the bike lane IN the park.

  • Gonebabygone

    Funny, none of the alternatives involve removing the bike lanes from the road and putting them on the extra wide paths in the park. The path leads all the way around to the Harahan, which will have the new river crossing built. When I have used the river walk path on the bluff daily for years and see plenty of people riding on it. I see more riding in the park or on the river walk above than on the dedicated bike lanes. They had a traffic counter on the bike lanes, and I wonder what the true counts will be from it. Likely not enough to warrant creating near gridlock on Riverside.

    Why are they not listening to the taxpayers? The traffic is terrible during rush hour and often backed all the way up onto 55 past the Arkansas exit in the morning. There are already off-street paths on both sides of Riverside drive that currently accommodate cyclists.

    My guess is the city is so broke it is using federal transportation funds to repave streets. Those dollars must come with the stipulation to road “diet” with bike lanes.

  • John G

    Cant all of you understand this bike and run paths have got to tie in to bridge with the $40 million dollar walkway to the other side to nothing that is there. They sure don’t want the tie in anywhere else cant put down Crump Blvd because don’t don’t want a robbery or shooting every 50ft.

  • Joe

    I reckon’ biking has gotten pretty congested on the paved paths in Tom Lee Park. Good call removing those rarely used vehicle lanes to fix the congestion of all those bikers in the park. Now we have no problems and no congestion on Riverside Dr. Way to go AC Wharton, such a great, strategic mayor always thinking on his feet…

  • James Brown

    Just wait. The problems haven’t even begun. Aren’t they talking about closing the I55 bridge for a couple of years and funneling the traffic up Riverside Drive to the I40 bridge?

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