New Dinkytown Greenway connects Saint Paul and suburbs to downtown Minneapolis
After years of planning, the Dinkytown Greenway is now open to bicycle traffic. The trail runs through the University of Minnesota’s East Bank campus and connects the U of M Transitway with the west bank of the Mississippi River. Bicyclists from Saint Paul, Falcon Heights and the northeast metro can now pedal to the edge of downtown Minneapolis without encountering motor vehicle traffic for most of the way.
Much of the Dinkytown Trail runs within a railroad trench that cuts through the East Bank campus. Putting bike traffic within the trench was first proposed back in the 1990s. Trail construction began in 2012 and wrapped up late last month.
The Dinkytown Greenway includes an old railroad span over the Mississippi River that’s been converted into a bike and pedestrian crossing. Next year, construction will extend the greenway under Interstate 35W and connect it to downtown Minneapolis streets. Mayor R.T. Rybak also plans to allocate a portion of his 2014 City budget for a staircase connecting the greenway with the heart of Dinkytown at 15th Ave and 4th Street.
Bikeways like the Dinkytown Greenway separate bicycle transit from motor vehicle traffic. This reduces on-street congestion and the potential for bicycle-motor vehicle conflict in areas that get a lot of bicyclists. In fact, the Dinkytown Greenway passes directly beneath 15th Avenue SE, which is the city’s busiest on-street bikeway.
For more information on bicycling in Minneapolis, go to www.minneapolismn.gov/bicycles.
Published Aug. 7, 2013