Let there be room for bikes on Chester Street | Arkansas Blog

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Let there be room for bikes on Chester Street

Posted By on Wed, May 27, 2015 at 4:12 PM

ERMA HENDRIX: OK now with Chester Street traffic change.
  • ERMA HENDRIX: OK now with Chester Street traffic change.
Little Rock city hall spokesman Luis Gonzalez informs me the great Chester Street bike laneapalooza has been settled in favor of the plan to convert the street to three-lanes, with a center turn lane and traffic lanes wide enough to accommodate bike traffic, though not specifically marked with bike lanes.

Gonzalez also says Ward 1 Director Erma Hendrix, who had some harsh words about the plan at a City Board meeting Tuesday night, "supports this option."

Hendrix had once supported the three-lane option, without marked bike lanes, but that changed. She objected publicly Tuesday night after her objections had prompted a delay in the  restriping of the street. The City Board decided last night to have the whole board vote next week on the striping plan. Today's announcement presumably means the Board shouldn't have to vote.

There was broad support for the change in Chester, viewed as a means to slow traffic and make it safer for pedestrians, bikers, school children and others. But the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette quoted Hendrix last night:

"The issue concerns people that live in that area and you people up here [are] going to do what concerns them, these few Caucasians emailing," Hendrix said Tuesday. "... These folks are running up to your face with some junk."

The change proposed for Chester — and recently implemented on Daisby Bates, which crosses Chester — is part of a citywide Complete Streets project to tailor roads to all users.

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