Delayed by Bloomington board: Right-of-way closures for Miller-Showers city gateway construction

In a change of plans, over the next few days, Reed & Sons Construction will not be starting onsite preparations for various improvements at the north end of Miller-Showers Park.

The scheduled work is supposed to include a 40-foot tall gateway monument costing about $400,000. The monolith features the word “Bloomington” in all caps inscribed vertically from top to bottom.

What delayed the parks department project was a decision made by Bloomington’s board of public works at its Tuesday night meeting.

In the area of College Avenue and Old 37, Reed & Sons had requested temporary sidewalk and lane closures, with proposed pedestrian detours, in order to make the construction work possible.

But the board voted to put off approval of those right-of-way closures.

Continue reading “Delayed by Bloomington board: Right-of-way closures for Miller-Showers city gateway construction”

Lower Cascades road options to be heard by Bloomington city council

On the north side of Bloomington, there’s currently no dedicated non-motorized pathway between Miller-Showers Park, up the Old SR 37 highway through Lower Cascades Park up to Cascades Park.

On Wednesday (July 26), Bloomington’s city council will get a presentation from planning and transportation director Scott Robinson with four possible approaches to that situation.

No vote on any proposal appears on Wednesday’s agenda.

The four options are sketched out in a memo from Robinson to the council.

One of them is labeled the “no-build” option, which means that cyclists would share the roadway with cars the way they do now, and pedestrians would walk in the road or else beside the road, where there is no improved surface.

The other three options are: closing the road to automobile traffic and dedicating the existing roadway just for non-motorized use; constructing a non-motorized path that is separate from the roadway; or converting the road to one-lane only for automobile traffic and the other lane for non-motorized traffic

On Saturday in Lower Cascades Park the “no build” option was the overwhelmingly preferred approach for the crowd of around 85 people who had gathered in the Waterfall Shelter to express their views. Continue reading “Lower Cascades road options to be heard by Bloomington city council”

Robinson confirmed as head of Bloomington’s planning and transportation department

On Monday night, Scott Robinson was confirmed by the city plan commission as director of a Bloomington city department that, for the time being at least, is called the planning and transportation department.

The unanimous vote by plan commissioners came after a rare appearance by the mayor at a plan commission meeting, who introduced Robinson as his appointment to head the department.

Mayor John Hamilton intends to rename the department, to eliminate the word “transportation.” The intended move provoked the ire of some city councilmembers, when it was revealed at a recent public meeting of the city council about the proposed 2021 budget. Councilmembers had some objections based on substance, but were also annoyed because the news came as a surprise.

Not a surprise was Hamilton’s introduction of Robinson to the plan commission on Monday night. For one thing, a press release issued a couple of weeks ago announced that Robinson, who was assistant director of the department, was the mayor’s choice to replace Terri Porter. She retired on Sept. 25 after serving as director for about three and a half years. Continue reading “Robinson confirmed as head of Bloomington’s planning and transportation department”