Dublin Villager

Council approves pedestrian bridges and bicycle lanes

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Even though it will cost twice as much as originally estimated, Dublin will go ahead with building two pedestrian bridges across the north fork of Indian Run and constructing bike lanes on Muirfield Drive.

Dublin City Council members last week approved the $2.8 million in work with a 5-1 vote.

Tim Lecklider casting the dissenting vote.

Councilwoman Amy Salay did not attend the meeting.

Plans have been in place to construction bike lanes on both sides of Muirfield Drive from Moors Place to Glick Road since 2011. The project also includes the construction of shared-use paths to connect the bike lanes to existing paths at the Muirfield Drive and Brand Road roundabout.

To make the connection, the installation of two pre-fabricated pedestrian bridges over the north fork of Indian Run on the east and west sides of the road is also necessary.

The original estimated cost for the project was $1.46 million, about half of cost of the $2.8 million contract Dublin City Council approved last week.

According to a staff memo to council, the original estimate did not include design costs and "did not accurately reflect the cost to construct pre-fabricated structures over the north fork (of) Indian Run."

The original estimate also planned to relocate 60 AEP street lights along Muirfield Drive when the bike lanes are added instead of replacing them as Dublin now plans to do.

"It makes more sense for us to operate and maintain the light poles," City Manager Marsha Grigsby told council members, adding that the city currently pays AEP to maintain the lights.

Lecklider voted no on the contracts, stating that he did not support the project in 2011 and does not support it now, especially with the cost doubling.

"I don't think there's enough traffic (on Muirfield Drive) to warrant a shared-use lane on the road," he said, adding that a multi-use path on the sides of the road would be preferable.

Council member John Reiner, however, said the bike lanes and pedestrian bridges will add an important connection to Dublin's path system.

"This is a piece of public transportation that people could use to get to work and north of Glick Road," he said, adding that the option was also the least expensive solution. "It's very important in long-range planning for our city."

With the project approved, work is expected to begin this month and be finished by Nov. 7.

For the bike lanes portion of the project, asphalt will be added to the outside of Muirfield Drive for five-foot bike lanes on each side of the road.

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