What the city refers to as the “Davis Street improvement project” will begin Monday and will continue for about 13 weeks, disrupting Evanston motorists, bikers, and pedestrians from Ridge Avenue to Hinman Avenue.

When it’s all finished, about the third week of October, there will be a protected bike lane along the north curb for the entire route.

But there’s much more to the project than just a bike lane.

Streetscape work will include replacing the existing pavers with a new concrete sidewalk and a brick border, installing new roadway curbing as needed, and replacing the existing tree grates and frames.

The street resurfacing involves grinding the asphalt surface, replacing roadway base and fiberglass crack control, and paving new asphalt surface from curb to curb, including replacing driveway aprons.

One lane of traffic will be maintained on Davis Street during the entire duration of the project. The actual date when construction is planned will be noted on the temporary “NO PARKING” signs posted 48 hours before the work begins.

While there will be some inconveniences for the abutting businesses and residents, the city promises that workers will attempt to minimize these issues. The street sweeping and/or neighborhood parking restrictions will be waived for a one-block radius around the construction zone.

Allowances have been made to maintain pedestrian access to businesses on Davis Street, but the city asks that businesses and residents use legal street parking spaces on adjacent side streets and parking garages for their parking needs.

Charles Bartling

A resident of Evanston since 1975, Chuck Bartling holds a master’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University and has extensive experience as a reporter and editor for daily newspapers, radio...

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  1. Ridiculous!

    This is absolutely ridiculous.  I can't believe that the city is going ahead with this project.  I don't know a single Evanstonian that wants to see this happen.  We are already the laughing stock of the north shore with the Church Street bike lane.  That I may add is hardly used. Who approved this??  Let the residents vote on these items.

    1. protected bike lanes are a good thing

      I'm an Evanstonian who wants this to happen. I know plenty of other Evanstonians who want this to happen. Evanston is small, and easily bikeable, and that means that I don't have to drive or pay for parking or take the train. And I'm so glad that Evanston is finally spending money on infrastructure that isn't a parking lot; I was starting to feel like an extra in Joni Mitchell's Big Yellow Tax – "they paved paradise / and put up a parking lot."

      Bike lanes don't make us laughing stock – bike lanes bring Evanston into the 21st century. And the ones we have are being used. I'm so glad to finally have a safe, protected cycling route. Hopefully this will also calm traffic.

      1. Hear, hear!

        Thank you, Morgan. As for myself and others who vastly prefer cycling over driving, I am grateful for the protected bike lanes, especially when I am riding with my daughter in the child seat.  I am hoping Chicago Ave is next for a safe bike lane!

      2. protected bike lanes are a good thing

        Right on Morgan!

        I'm in too…and very glad this is the start of something good!

        Brian G. Becharas
        Energy Education Associates
        619 Oakton St.
        Evanston, IL  60202  USA
        Personal e-Mail:  bbecharas@aol.com
        Home/office 847.475.0319  Mobile 847.922.1114
        Skype: brian.becharas
        Secretary: Renewable Energy Task Force, Chairman: Transportation Task Force,
        CGE – http://www.greenerevanston.org/   http://www.facebook.com/CitizensGreenerEvanston

      3. Count me as another

        Count me as another Evanstonian in favor of this project.

        Greater enforcement in the block between Orrington and Chicago would be excelent — too many delivery trucks and cars parked on the bike lane, in particular during the evening rush hour.


  2. What’s wrong with protected lanes?

    I use the lane on Church all the time. Would it be so bad to have some protected lanes? 

  3. All hail the auto

    Yes, it is ridiculous to give bike riders a place to ride safely, when we all know that automobiles should have precedence over all other means of getting places. And what about those silly pedestrian crosswalks? Get rid of them, too!

  4. My daughter and her friends won’t bike it

    Good thing, really?  My young daughter has a part time job downtown on Church Street.  She no longer likes to drive down Church, says the street feels too tight and dangerous, and she won't bike it because she feels the bike lanes are even worse.  Feels invisible at intersections and just as likely to get doored.  Says all her ETHS friends feel basically the same way. 

    Says she now drives a few extra blocks south, back up Sherman to Davis into the garage.  

  5. Bike lanes and problems with cars

    Since getting "door'd" by rabbi who had parked and was so busy looking at his phone map and openning his door and causing me to crash, I see more the need for lanes everywhere !  Not only do so many drivers open doors without looking but so do passengers.

    Also I'd estimate 1/3 of cars fail to given turn signals even when making left turns and even on Ridge, Sheridan and Greenbay.  Beside that some [manufactured] car lights are either so dim or overpowered by brake lights that you think the turn  lights are not on until you see the other end of the car.  Except for a few cars wth signals showing on the side, you still don't know if they are turning until they do.

  6. Make the bike lanes direction opposite the traffic

    With all of the worry about getting "doored" on the bike lanes, why not have the bike lanes go in the reverse of the vehicular traffic direction? That way, the person in the car sees the cyclist and the cyclist sees that there is somebody in the car. I wouldn't recommend it without a separated lane, but why not on protected bike lanes? At least people could see each other.

    1. Intersections are the

      Intersections are the problem, especially on one way streets. For example, drivers going west on Maple Ave, when they want to take a right turn into Church St (to go east), they tend to look left only, looking for car traffic. Pedestrians and cyclists going west have to be extra careful. [As an aside note, cyclists riding against traffic or on sidewalks should be ticketed.)


  7. Easy answer

    Ban auto traffic on Church and Davis    Monday thru Friday.  Have no parking on these streets on Saturday and Sunday. This will elimaate the need for special bike lanes and traffic lights.

  8. Protected bike lanes

    Since they have decided to put  parking meters that take credit cards in. Why not use the Meters as one of the posts for the protected bike lane?

  9. Bike lanes

    I use the bike lane on Church daily and share it with many others biking East.  (I also return west on Davis Steet).  The previous problems of cars blocking bike lanes, driver door-openings and pull-outs from parking without looking  are much better with the poles and lanes (UPS and Fed Ex are still lane-blocking delinquents).  Bike riders still need to focus on obeying the traffic laws, including not going west against traffic on Church in the narrow bike lane.  Using the bike lane on Davis is still dicey, as drivers pull out in front of the liquor store and Post Office without looking to see if someone is in the bike lane, and drivers turning right at Ridge and Asbury need to be on the lookout for the fact that bikes have to move to the center of the road at those intersections.  But progress is being made and there are a lot more families biking to the lakefront on the weekends.   So Hurrah! 

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