Rodney Parham/Mississippi/I-630 Crossing Infrastructure Request

Public Works is currently taking requests from residents for infrastructure projects for the 2019-2021.  I have been approached from several people who are interested in projects that would make Little Rock a better place for bicycle and pedestrian modes of transportation but who are not familiar enough with current BikePed challenges and opportunities to make a meaningful request.  It is in that spirit that I share with you this and other ideas.  Unless Little Rock residents fill out an infrastructure request form for this idea, it will not be considered for the 2019-2021 funds.  The demand for each idea is measured, in part, by the number of residents requesting an idea.  Support from local organizations, businesses, and neighborhood associations can also help increase the likelihood that a project is selected for implementation.  Requests are due by September 30, 2017.

Kanis Park is difficult to visit by bike or by foot.  A major challenge for these transportation modes north of I-630 is navigating the Rodney Parham/Mississippi/I-630 Crossing intersection.  This is an intersection at which there are many vehicles traveling fast in multiple lanes (Fig. 1).  The highway exit and multiple turn lanes further complicate traffic patterns.  ArDOT has preliminary plans to expand I-630 in a way that would make this intersection even more dangerous for people on bike and on foot.  BikePed connectivity is critical at this intersection not only for local park access, but for the regional Midline proposed corridor.  

Figure 1.  Complex traffic patterns moving a lot of cars at high speeds makes this a dangerous intersection for people on bike or on foot, but connectivity would allow residents north of I-630 to more easily access the park as well as create a critical connection for the Midline.  The Midline would require users to cross from the existing BikePed trail on the top right of the picture across Mississippi and then across Rodney Parham to get to Kanis Park at the bottom left of the picture.

If this is a project you would like to see completed, feel free to use any of the language below to complete an infrastructure request form and submit it to Public Works no later than September 30th (postal mail and email addresses can be found on the form):

1) Briefly describe the proposed project.  Please include the boundaries of the project.

Rodney Parham/Mississippi/I-630 Crossing:  This intersection makes bicycle or pedestrian access to Kanis Park from neighborhoods north of I-630 and travel on the proposed Midline dangerous.  ArDOT has preliminary plans to expand I-630 in a way that would make this intersection even more dangerous for people on bike and on foot.  I would like the City of Little Rock to work closely with ArDOT when this intersection is designed and create a safe and convenient means for bicycles and pedestrians to cross it.  I would like the City of Little Rock explore cost-sharing solutions with ArDOT to create a tunnel, a bridge, or some other means for people on bike and on foot to cross this dangerous intersection. If a new Master Plan reroutes the Midline to a route that bypasses this project's location, I would like the funding requested here to go toward making BikePed improvements to support that corridor.

2) Indicate if this is a new project or a continuation of an existing project.

This is a modification or improvement to a proposed ArDOT project as part of the proposed I-630 expansion from the Big Rock Interchange to University Ave.