Slower speeds, bicycle lanes coming to LaSalle Avenue in South Bend

Published: May. 12, 2023 at 6:23 PM EDT
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SOUTH BEND, Ind. (WNDU) - Changes that are meant to calm traffic and enhance safety for pedestrians and cyclists are coming to South Bend’s East Bank neighborhood.

According to our reporting partners at the South Bend Tribune, a $5.6 million project will convert LaSalle Avenue from what’s essentially a four-lane road out of downtown to one lane both ways, in addition to a center turn lane.

Road lanes will be narrowed to slow down vehicles and make room for 36 on-street parking spots. The plan is for vehicles to pass through LaSalle Avenue at 25 mph instead of the existing 30 mph speed limit.

Meanwhile, sidewalks will be widened, and a two-way bicycle lane will be added.

Plans also include raised intersections, or speed tables, at the stoplights at LaSalle Avenue and Niles Avenue, as well as LaSalle Avenue and Hill Street. Raised crosswalks will connect segments of the East Bank trail that are currently split by four high-speed lanes.

The project will span from Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard to Eddy Street.  Construction is expected to begin towards the end of June.

Two-lane traffic is expected to be maintained for the first couple months of construction before limiting the road to eastbound travel. The street is expected to reopen by Nov. 3.

The changes are being met with support from local business owners and residents, as 100 crashes have happened within the LaSalle Avenue corridor from Niles Avenue to Notre Dame since January 2020, according to data from the Michiana Area Council of Governments.

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