City works to provide more sidewalks and bicycle lanes

City officials are working on a project to provide more sidewalks and bicycle lanes for locals.

City officials are working on a project to provide more sidewalks and bicycle lanes for locals through a $950,000 grant from the Tennessee Department of Transportation.

The Board of Mayor and Aldermen voted Oct. 1 to apply for a Multimodal Access Grant to be used for sidewalks and bicycle lanes along US Highway 41.

The proposed project includes several different aspects to enhance Highway 41, according to Jamie Sain, codes director.

“The overall project will extend 5.9 miles from the northern city limits just to the north of Northridge Drive to the southern city limits just to the south of Asbury Road along US 41,” Sain said.

“When US 41 was resurfaced by TDOT in 2018, the City of Manchester and TDOT worked together to have a bike lane included with the project from the intersection of Hendrixson Drive to the intersection of Hwy 55.”

The proposed project would extend the bike lanes to the north from Hendrixson Drive to the northern city limits and to the south from Highway 55 to the southern city limits, leaving bike lanes along the entire section of Highway 41 in the city limits.

“With both sides of US 41 having adequate shoulders, there will be no problem installing bike lanes meeting the minimum design standards in all speed limit areas,” Sain said. “8.4 miles of new bike lanes would be installed.”

The proposed project would also make the existing sidewalks, crosswalks and curb ramps ADA compliant, added Sain.

“When US 41 was resurfaced, the existing curb ramps and crosswalks were replaced to make them ADA compliant. The proposed project would consist of repairing curb ramps that were missed during the previous project, sidewalk repairs, and crosswalk striping to make all of the existing facilities along US 41 between Hendrixson Drive and Walls Street ADA compliant.”

A quarter of a mile of sidewalk would be replaced for ADA compliance, according to Sain.

“Since most of Manchester’s retail businesses and restaurants are located at the Interstate 24 Exit 114 area, the proposed project would extend the sidewalks along both sides of US 41 south from where sidewalk ends now at Walls Street to the intersection of Burger Street,” Sain said. “This seems to be a logical terminus for sidewalk construction with the amount of money provided. The city plans to extend sidewalks to the southern city limits in future projects. The proposed project would also include installing two missing segments of sidewalk in the Old Stone Fort State Park area. The two missing segments would be from where the sidewalk ends now at Hendrixson Drive to Service Area Road on the west side of US 41 and to Glenburg Drive on the east side of US 41. With US 41 having adequate shoulders and right-of-way in these areas, there will be no problem meeting minimum design standards; 2.3 miles of new sidewalk would be installed.”

The grant requires the city to provide $50,000 for the project and to maintain the sidewalks and bike lanes once they’re completed.

The city agreed to maintain those facilities in the future.