MADISON (WKOW) -- The City of Madison will unveil design plans for the 700-800 blocks of State Street and Library Mall Tuesday night at the Memorial Union's Tripp Commons. Next spring, the city wants to start reconstruction of the area, revamping the pedestrian walkway between Lake Street and Park Street and the Library Mall area.
"If you go on the 700-800 blocks, you can tell it's kind of 70s era-ish and really what we're trying to do is create a more flexible, timeless space," said Chris Petykowski, of the City of Madison Engineering, said in April.
Back in April, the city began asking for public input, including from University of Wisconsin-Madison students who use the walkway every day.
"I'd just like to see more green spaces," said UW-Madison student Taylor Lauzon.
"Probably more bike access because I've noticed bikes are not allowed. It would make it a lot easier to get through here," said UW-Madison student Kristen Petranek, who also likes the idea of having more food carts.
Other students, however, believe there are better ways to spend money than beautification.
"I think it'd be great if the university spent less money on infrastructural improvements and beautification of campus and more in instructional and operational costs," UW-Madison student Darien Lamen said.
The State Street portion alone will cost upwards of $5 million, and UW-Madison will pay for a portion of the Library Mall expenses. The alderman for the area says that the project also involves much needed structural changes.
"The conduits very much need replacing, whether it's the pipes underneath the ground to make sure we have proper water. We also have a lot of issues with drainage, particularly on the corner of east campus mall and State Street," Resnick said.
A meeting on another construction project, impacting North Sherman Avenue, has been rescheduled. That date has not yet been set.
Originally, a traffic engineering firm planned to share the results of a traffic study Tuesday night. It examined the impact of reducing N. Sherman Ave. from four lanes to two.
Some people who live near N. Sherman Ave. have expressed wishes that City of Madison make the street safer.
"There's a crosswalk but because of the volume of traffic, and they're not yielding to pedestrians generally speaking. It's just a little nerve wrecking," Mary Johnston said.
"What I hear from my constituents on a regular basis is that they're afraid to cross the street. And that's just not right," said Ald. Satya Rhodes-Conway (District 12).
Area businesses, however, think the reduction in traffic will lead to a decrease in business.
"The majority of businesses on N. Sherman are small businesses. And if you take away that drive by traffic, it's a very fragile business community. And we're afraid some of the businesses wouldn't be able to sustain that loss," said Steve Nelson, owner of DuWayne's Salon and a member of Madison's Northside Business Association.
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2013 WorldNow and WKOW. All Rights Reserved.
Persons with disabilities who need assistance with issues relating to the content of this station's public inspection file should contact Program Manager Jessica Miller at 608-661-2794. Questions or concerns relating to the accessibility of the FCC's online public file system should be directed to the FCC at 888-225-5322, at 888-835-5322 (TTY) or at firstname.lastname@example.org.