“Great Streets” Come from Great Effort, Is Vandeventer Next?

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St. Louis is experiencing an exceptional transformation. Streets, significant thoroughfares, are being remade nearly everywhere one looks. Grand, Washington, DeBaliviere, Manchester and Vandeventer Avenues and more are becoming more pedestrian friendly. While much work remains and many places are not getting better, this represents a new paradigm in the management of city streets.

Yet these improvements do not happen simply because someone at the city realized it's a good idea to accommodate pedestrians, cyclists and strollers. Change takes time and consistent effort. Trailnet has been working for several years to educate local authorities and support livable streets. If we want to see the current projects maintained and additional streets improved for multiple uses, we must weigh in and advocate for change.

Vandeventer Avenue from Kingshighway to Shaw was recently re-striped from four traffic lanes to two with a middle turn lane. The Southwest Garden neighborhood, among others, has supported this change. However, the temporary transition has drawn complaints, and at least in my opinion was not done well. It may even be an open question as to whether this stretch of Vandeventer is the best place for lane reduction.

South Grand Avenue is a commercial district with significant retail and relatively dense residential on each side. Manchester Avenue in The Grove is an emerging commercial district. Even with wider sidewalks and street lights it's debatable as to whether this stretch will see much pedestrian traffic.

Whereas Grand saw temporary barriers, Vandeventer was simply re-striped without any physical change. Regardless, a two-lane street is more than capable of carrying the traffic load on this section of Vandeventer. The plan for Vandeventer is below. What is needed is for those in favor of reduced traffic lanes to weigh in. To leave feedback, email [email protected] and be sure to provide your name and how you use this stretch of Vandeventer.
Vandeventer Streetscape Project_Overview Presentation

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