City presents plans to improve Franklin Boulevard

Six new roundabouts could be added.

Posted: Mar 10, 2020 10:02 PM
Updated: Mar 11, 2020 10:53 AM

EUGENE, Ore. -- The city of Eugene presented their proposal to redesign Franklin Boulevard Tuesday afternoon at an open house.

The proposal includes adding six new roundabouts at major traffic points between Alder Street and the Interstate 5 off-ramp. A city engineer said this proposal will reduce the speed of traffic but it will also keep traffic moving.

City officials estimate nearly 30,000 cars drive on Franklin Boulevard every day, averaging speeds above the 35 mph speed limit. Larisa Varela, transportation planner for the city of Eugene, said this proposed plan also fits into the city's Climate Action Plan.

"Our goal is to triple the number of people that walk, ride a bike, or take transit," Varela said. "Right now Franklin has very limited places for people to safely walk or bike and has constraints where Emx goes through. It redesigns the streets to be less auto dominated​."

The design will also construct protected bike lanes on each side of the street. Kellyn Gross is a Eugene resident and cyclist and she is happy with the bike lanes.

"I commute to work in west Eugene and right now it kind of feels unsafe and often I feel like I’m an obstacle to traffic," Gross said.

City officials did stress this is not their final plan. They will look at comments from Tuesday's attendees and adjust the plans accordingly. The city said the earliest time construction could start would be in 2022.

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