Monday, October 20, 2008

Chicago's Lakeshore Drive 2002/2003 Rebuild - Comparable to Memorial Drive?

The $162 MM, 6-mile project, runs from Chicago's 22nd Street near the McCormick Place Convention Center south to 67th Street.

Traffic volumes through this section of Lakeshore Drive range from 110,000 cars per day on the north end to 24,000 cars per day on south end. Lakeshore Drive is built as an eight lane boulevard.

By comparison, Memorial Drive and the I-70 depressed and elevated lanes combined carry approximately 90,000 cars per day through downtown St. Louis.

The six mile rebuild of Lakeshore Drive cost $162,000,000, or about $27,000,000 per mile. The section of the depressed and elevated lanes of I-70 for possible replacement with a new Memorial Drive runs about one mile - from the Poplar Street Bridge on the south to Cole on the north.

The considerations of the two situations are similar - improving waterfront/cultural/recreational access, civic beautification, maintaining traffic flow and enhancing pedestrian access.

Chicago developed a landscaped boulevard to enhance its waterfront area. St. Louis has the same opportunity.


Anonymous said...

Chicago's lakefront is inhabited by caring, resourceful, creative, prosperous, people who priorities favor people not pickup trucks. The downtown areas and parks are supported financially and creatively by wealthy suburbanites and city dwellers.

By the way, LSD is managed for events that spreads the wealth. Whether for watching fireworks, celebrating cycling or supporting pedestrians and mass transit, everyone gets to use the area for enjoyment, outdoor sports and transportation.

The only similarity with the Lou is that both are next to water. Until local attitudes change nothing else will.

stlmark said...

Rick, don't these "anonymous" commentors drive you nuts sometimes? Chicago elitist maybe?

Rick Bonasch said...

I enjoy anonymous comments. Often they are more candid than people would post using their own names.

The comments section is for the exchange of ideas. Allowing anonymity can increase the level of conversation.

I'm trying to digest the NPS preferred alternative for the Arch site, which references increasing connectivity between the Memorial and downtown streets.

Do you think that it could include vacating the I-70 depressed lanes and building a new Memorial Drive?

Fewer words sometimes translates to broader interpretations...:-)

Jackson said...

The downtown areas and parks are supported financially and creatively by wealthy suburbanites and city dwellers.

I guess all of that government money is chump change compared to the largess of the gentry? Come on. Everyone pays taxes, and most people who pay taxes aren't "wealthy." Most wealthy people in Lake Forest and Wilmette are glad to support local parks and schools, not so much to support Chicago city. Chicago is not utopia, pal.