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Old 11-16-2016, 03:02 PM
 
Location: Greenville, NC
1,069 posts, read 986,823 times
Reputation: 591

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I would be in favor of more bike lanes all over the whole city to get those annoyances the hell out of the vehicular travel lanes.

This is Greenville. We all have cars. We happily drive our cars. Traffic could be much worse and many of the problem areas (like Evans Street) can be fixed with widening.
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Old 11-16-2016, 05:13 PM
 
3,323 posts, read 5,190,506 times
Reputation: 2359
City of Greenville welcomes South Korean delegation as possible sister city
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Old 11-17-2016, 04:09 AM
 
2,401 posts, read 3,364,833 times
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Haven't commented about the proposed pedestrian bridge.

While I like the idea, I would have liked to see it included in the Town Common design that was approved recently. In fact it needed to be front and center if it is going to be an iconic structure. In terms of design, it should flow freely within a Greenway plan that includes River Park North and the existing pedestrian bridge in the Town Common, and possibly even at an angle across the river, which would offer a differing angle from the Green St bridge. As well, some design elements from the existing pedestrian bridge on the Town Common should be included. Finally, it should offer green lighting.

Seems like there is too much of this plan, that plan and not a nice comprehensive plan that puts the Town Common as the center of Greenville's Pedestrian/Bikeway/Greenway plan. Honestly, it seems there is so much focus put on the Tower at the Town Common that all of these plans are missing the point of them. Finally, what is the plan in tying the ECU campus to the Town Common? I believe ECU has proposed a pedestrian bridge over 5th St, why is that not incorporated into Greenville's overall Greenway system plan? For example, Wilmington's 10 mile cross city trail spans across UNCW's campus.
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Old 11-17-2016, 08:14 AM
 
1,022 posts, read 1,005,562 times
Reputation: 367
I agree in part with HP and Dr. Wickstrom. I definitely think this bridge should have been included in the Town common plan. It would have made things a lot easier. Once again, this is an example of too many separate plans. So much focus was put on the tower because there was a large group of people fighting for that to be put into the plan.

But I do think the bridge would be used, especially once the TC renovations take place. There will be a huge surge in usage. But, I don't think we need a big price tag on it. Money is already set aside with the transportation bond to provide more bike lanes and improve bike lane quality. They could build a functional, "nice" looking bridge and greenway system and not break the bank. It doesn't have to be the Liberty Bridge in Greenville, SC if it's going to cost 20 million. The renovated TC IS the draw, IMO. It will be the attraction. Besides, the section of RPN across from the TC is pretty much undeveloped and kind of far away from the main part of the developed park. RPN would have to develop something (trails, nature/event center, cabins) in that area for usage to "spill over" to a great degree.

IMO, Greenways are perfect for cyclists. Each time I run or bike on the greenways I frequent here in Raleigh, I've seen nice groups of cyclists ( groups of 10-20 people each ) riding up and down the trails. I think cyclists will go where there is a safe place to ride. If that's at the Commons & River Park North, that's where they will go. Personally, I wouldn't dare try to bike as a daily mode of transportation in Greenville, or even here in Raleigh. It's changing, but still way too dangerous.

Dr. Wickstrom, I'm not sure how you're planning on biking to RPN or where you're biking from, but I can think of only two ways to get there from the main city limits. Up 264 to 33 to Mumford or up Greene Street to Mumford. It seems that a 264 trip would be awfully dangerous, and that would leave the Greene Street route(which is already a downtown route). A pedestrian bridge through a renovated Town Common into RPN seems like a better, safer route to take if you're in the city limits of Greenville.
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Old 11-17-2016, 10:44 AM
 
294 posts, read 271,651 times
Reputation: 64
We can't ignore the future with regard to the pedestrian bridge. Sure there may not be an over whelming number of cyclists uptown or in general now, but what does Greenville want to be 20 years from now? Just look at how much uptown has changed in 3-5 years. As it grows people will continue to move back towards the city center. The Greenway is being nurtured and will ultimately result in greater usage. Town Common, pedestrian bridge, and the greenway are focal points for the city. Economic developers sell these items to companies to lure them to Greenville. Companies that value those amenities typically have employees that do as well, ergo more people moving to Greenville that utilize these features. Chicken or the egg, if you build it they will come type stuff.
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Old 11-17-2016, 11:11 AM
 
137 posts, read 141,015 times
Reputation: 76
Regarding the proposed pedestrian bridge connecting the Town Common and River Park North, I assume the reason the bridge was not part of the Town Common Master Plan was because two different design companies were required, one for each project. Each design company has their own specialty, which I also assume did not include the expertise to design the other project. I would also not want to hold up the redevelopment of the Town Common until funding for both the redevelopment and the bridge was in hand.

Regarding the cost of the bridge, I agree that it is a lot of money for the City to be spending, but their plan is to raise private money to assist with both projects. I agree that sometimes to do something special requires what, at the time, what seems to be excessive amounts of money. I tend to side with being fiscally conservative, but there are exceptions to that and creating an iconic structure for Greenville that should also provide significant utility is, in my opinion, one of those exceptions. Often those projects that seem to require an excessive amount of money end up being bargains. The Durham Bulls Athletic Park built in 1995 is an example. There was a lot of opposition to the cost of that ballpark before it was built, but now, look at all the development it fostered in that part of Durham.
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Old 11-17-2016, 01:18 PM
 
2,401 posts, read 3,364,833 times
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Again, I am not opposed to the bridge or a high price tag. But it needs to be built based on a master plan, not as some individual project. The City needed to include it with the Town Common plan because it will be part of the Town Common.

It was like, what TWO WEEKS ago that the City voted on the Town Common plan? Too many planners at the City doing individual projects obviously...ZERO collaboration. Someone dropped the ball in their instructions/communication to the consultants. Greenville deserves better than that.

Greenville needs to stop piecemealing its projects. It shows a lack of coordination and vision.

And finally, to drive the point home in terms of the Town Common...while the tower concept is nice from a historical standpoint, I still don't get the Community building and fountain concept at the Town Common IN LIEU of a connection to a 300+ acre park across the river. Had the consultants been given that connection as a priority then they would have prioritized it. The expense for the other two things are NOT justifiable compared to the connection to that HUGE park across the river. especially in terms of the City's Greenway and Parks system. They just are not as important.

If this is all going to a Bond, it needs to be prioritized. IMO, the Town Common can function great with a festival lawn, a living riverfront with amenities, an amphitheater, the playground, the Historical Tower and its connections to the Greenway and River Park North. That's honestly enough...no need to spend money where its not justified.
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Old 11-17-2016, 01:53 PM
 
137 posts, read 141,015 times
Reputation: 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by HP91 View Post
Again, I am not opposed to the bridge or a high price tag. But it needs to be built based on a master plan, not as some individual project. The City needed to include it with the Town Common plan because it will be part of the Town Common.

It was like, what TWO WEEKS ago that the City voted on the Town Common plan? Too many planners at the City doing individual projects obviously...ZERO collaboration. Someone dropped the ball in their instructions/communication to the consultants. Greenville deserves better than that.

Greenville needs to stop piecemealing its projects. It shows a lack of coordination and vision.

And finally, to drive the point home in terms of the Town Common...while the tower concept is nice from a historical standpoint, I still don't get the Community building and fountain concept at the Town Common IN LIEU of a connection to a 300+ acre park across the river. Had the consultants been given that connection as a priority then they would have prioritized it. The expense for the other two things are NOT justifiable compared to the connection to that HUGE park across the river. especially in terms of the City's Greenway and Parks system. They just are not as important.

If this is all going to a Bond, it needs to be prioritized. IMO, the Town Common can function great with a festival lawn, a living riverfront with amenities, an amphitheater, the playground, the Historical Tower and its connections to the Greenway and River Park North. That's honestly enough...no need to spend money where its not justified.
The most important goal of redeveloping the Town Common is to activate it by including attractions that will draw people there, not just when there are events at the amphitheater, but on a daily basis. I brought up the same issue of piecemealing the design by having a two-phase master planning process some time ago, but I don't see a pedestrian bridge being as critical to the overall goal as a well-designed plan for the town common. I also do want to see the pedestrian bridge, but that could be done at a later date. There has been public interest in having a bridge to connect the TC and RPN since the initial public input for the master plan, however, the first official call for a pedestrian bridge was by members of the City Council just a few weeks ago. Since information related to public interest in a pedestrian bridge was available to RHI, I assume their design accommodates that as a future possibility.

A pedestrian bridge would only add to the draw of the Town Common, but if the Town Common is not done right initially, there will be delayed economic development across First Street which is the desired result of drawing more people to the Town Common on a regular basis. Funding both the TC redevelopment and a pedestrian bridge at the same time probably won't happen so let's get the first step done right, first.
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Old 11-17-2016, 02:45 PM
 
Location: Winterville
181 posts, read 215,274 times
Reputation: 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by michealbond View Post
Dr. Wickstrom, I'm not sure how you're planning on biking to RPN or where you're biking from, but I can think of only two ways to get there from the main city limits. Up 264 to 33 to Mumford or up Greene Street to Mumford. It seems that a 264 trip would be awfully dangerous, and that would leave the Greene Street route(which is already a downtown route). A pedestrian bridge through a renovated Town Common into RPN seems like a better, safer route to take if you're in the city limits of Greenville.
Hadn't planned the route until you said something but I would just take Dickenson to Greene. I'm over by South Central High School. You're right Greene is already down town so having another bridge right next to it wouldn't really do much but save me... maybe a mile at most. It would be cool to bike over the water but hardly worth $20 million as far as the time savings is concerned.

I'm personally more fore spending money on function things that make everyday living better not just trying to build an "icon" that will eventually fade and be ignored by the vast majority of the population. I mean is there anyone here who really feels safe on the roads here? I doubt it and I certainly doubt that any cyclist, like myself enjoys commuting on bike. I've been called all kinds of names riding my bike, cussed at, cut off, flipped off etc.

Lots of cities have parks and bridges or icons but people don't move there for those. They come for work and stay for the people and the community. I know I'm a yankee but it may do good for the more rooted locals to know that I have yet to meet a single person that felt welcome to this town or that wanted to stay because of the people. Most of the locals I've talked to about this feel the same way. So while having a cool park or a nice bridge may make for a few nice weekend activities, in my opinion it will not create a happier resident the way better infrastructure and less taxes would.

Finding ways to improving everyday life seems like a better investment than a new "toy". We need to change the way the community lives and interacts with each other. I'm not sure a park or bridge will do that. Sorry for the rant, just wanted to put my two cents out there.
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Old 11-17-2016, 03:41 PM
 
Location: Greenville, NC
1,069 posts, read 986,823 times
Reputation: 591
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr Bret Wickstrom View Post
I'm personally more fore spending money on function things that make everyday living better not just trying to build an "icon" that will eventually fade and be ignored by the vast majority of the population. I mean is there anyone here who really feels safe on the roads here? I doubt it and I certainly doubt that any cyclist, like myself enjoys commuting on bike. I've been called all kinds of names riding my bike, cussed at, cut off, flipped off etc.
Commuting to work on a bicycle seems like a circle of hell to me but to each their own.
You (not you specifically, but militant cyclists) get flipped off and yelled at because you (again, not) slow down everyone in a car. People who are on a bicycle because they legitimately have no other means of transportation seem to try to stay out of everyone's way while the ones on a $5000 bicycle try to prove a point.

I actually agree with the rest of your post. I mean it when I say I'd rather see bike lanes everywhere. It is for the greater good. It makes cycling safer and makes it less frustrating for those of us in cars. The old Greene Street truss span should have been put across the river instead of that creeek 10 years ago if this is what they wanted to do instead.
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