Thursday, October 15, 2009

Would a new Memorial Drive discourage you from coming downtown?

One of the concerns raised about replacing the I-70 depressed lanes with an at grade boulevard in front of the Arch is that it reduces access to downtown. It's an interesting question.

Currently, drivers headed to downtown St. Louis destinations must exit the interstate at either Memorial Drive (from the south) or the Memorial Drive/Pine Street exit (from the north). On the other hand, drivers staying on the interstate are bypassing downtown, possibly headed to North County, St. Charles County, Lambert Field, UMSL, South County, Jefferson County and other points north or south of downtown St. Louis.

If there was a boulevard in place of the depressed lanes, all traffic traveling through the current Memorial Drive/I-70 depressed lanes corridor would be on the city street grid from around Walnut at the Old Cathedral north through Laclede's Landing and the Bottle District area.

On a new boulevard, drivers would have multiple connection points to downtown hotels, restaurants, Laclede's Landing, Lumiere Casino, Washington Avenue, the proposed new Immigration Museum, Market Street, the Edward Jones Dome, the Bottle District, and all other points downtown.

Drivers on the depressed lanes have no connections to downtown, unless they exit the interstate. For those concerned that a new Memorial Drive boulevard in place of the depressed lanes reduces access to downtown, how do you see that happening?

1 comment:

rob said...

I'd go downtown more!