The city of Dayton has approved a $3.7 million contract to rebuild Warren Street, a project that will create new bikes lanes and rejigger the road to match Brown Street.
The reconstructed Warren Street will feature one lane in each direction, a dedicated left-turn lane and bike lanes on either side. The street currently has four narrow lanes.
Brown Street underwent the same type of rebuild a few years ago. The project will extend the bikeways and road design by the University of Dayton deeper into downtown.
One goal is to make Brown and Warren streets local access roads, intended foremost for motorists who want to visit the university and the business corridor, city officials said.
“We’re trying to encourage people to use Main Street and Patterson as opposed to Brown for through movement,” said Steve Finke, Dayton’s deputy director of public works and city engineer.
Last week, the city of Dayton awarded a construction contract for the Warren Street project to Milcon Concrete Inc., the lowest bidder.
About $2.4 million of the $3.66 million project will come from federal funds, which were awarded by the Miami Valley Regional Planning Commission.
The rest of the money will come from state, city and water department sources.
The construction will take place between Buckeye Street to the north and Wyoming Street to the south.
The project includes reconstruction of the road and the installation of new curbs, sidewalks, street lighting, water lines, storm sewer and catch basins.
Construction is expected to begin around September and take about a year to complete. The project’s start date depends on when work on Main Street wraps up.
South Main Street currently is under construction and is being widened to five lanes.
By design, Main Street should be the primary road for through traffic, while Brown and Warren streets will primarily function as local access roads, Finke said.
“With the Main Street work going on, we’re getting a lot more traffic on Brown Street,” Finke said. “But I anticipate that once we are done, more people will go on Main Street to travel through to go downtown because it will be five lanes and a lot more efficient.”
Local officials said the bike-lane component of the project represents a small fraction of its overall cost.
But that improvement is significant because it will connect the UD area, Miami Valley Hospital neighborhood and downtown, said Brian Martin, executive director of the Miami Valley Regional Planning Commission.
The Link bike-share program launched earlier this month, and the new bike lanes will be some of the most heavily utilized paths in the region, Martin said. Link riders will benefit from on-street bike lanes.
“Link bikes are to be used on the roads and not on the sidewalks,” Martin said.
Jefferson Street has existing bike lanes, and the city wants to better connect UD with RiverScape, Finke said.
He said the city in the future will explore ways of joining the bike paths along Jefferson and Warren.
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