COLUMBIA — The bicycle lane construction project along Route K received mixed reviews from residents at a public hearing sponsored by the Missouri Department of Transportation on Thursday evening.
Bob Jany, transportation project designer for MoDOT, said the state is set to begin the $2 million project around April of next year and is aiming to finish in September.
“It’s going to be a one year project,” Jany said.
The 7-mile construction along Route K will take place from its intersection with Missouri 163 to the Katy Trail in McBaine. The shoulders of the road will be marked as bike lanes with symbols. The road will remain open during the entire process.
Some residents in attendance voiced mixed opinions.
Richard Basnett, 69, who has lived in the Rock Bridge area his entire life, said he is glad to see any improvements for bicyclists' safety. He said he used to ride a bike on Route K when he was young, recalling that there wasn't as much traffic then.
“But now, it’s a thousand times more (traffic)," Basnett said. "I’d just like to see it safer for everybody.”
Martha and Paul Sabo, who also live in the Rock Bridge area, said they are worried about the project’s commercial purpose.
“I think it’s great publicity, but I like the size of this city now,” Martha Sabo said.
Project Manager Trent Brooks said that the $2 million allotted for the construction will be used solely for the bike lane project and that resurfacing Route K will require additional funds.