Last year, the city of Phoenix conducted a study to determine if putting bicycle lanes along Missouri Avenue—and thereby reducing traffic lanes to one in each direction from 19th Avenue to 24th Street—was a feasible idea. After receiving the study results, the city decided to host a community meeting to share the information it had gathered and to receive public input.
Weeks before the Oct. 26 meeting was to take place, public input began circulating on social media sites like Nextdoor.com and coming in to the city’s Street Transportation Department. And the majority of the comments were not at all favorable to the proposal.
Most commenters felt that Missouri Avenue was already congested, particularly during afternoon rush hour, and to eliminate lanes would make the situation exponentially worse.
Ultimately the city postponed the meeting. But after months went by, a new meeting date was never announced.
That’s because the proposal has been scrapped, explained Monica Hernandez, public information officer for the city’s Street Transportation Department. Based largely on the negative feedback from the public, “We are no longer planning to continue to propose bike lanes for Missouri Avenue.”
Rather, the city has decided to invest in a much broader transportation “master plan” study for the entire community, not just Missouri Avenue. “We want to look at what is working, what is not working, and gather ideas and suggestions from the community,” Hernandez said.
The comprehensive transportation study will look at all modes, not just bicycles. The study is set to launch sometime this spring.
Residents who want to be kept up-to-date on the new study and provide input are asked to send an e-mail to MissouriAvenueProject@phoenix.gov. While this particular project is no longer moving forward, the e-mail will stay active and will be used for those interested in the future citywide transportation study as well.