Hennepin-Lyndale Avenue traffic bottleneck to get a face-lift

I get interviewed in the Star Tribune by Emma Nelson: Hennepin-Lyndale Avenue traffic bottleneck to get a face-lift

Morning rush hour traffic backed up near Loring Park and the Walker Art Center, near the entrances to 35W-I94, Lyndale Ave South and Hennepin Ave South.
Photo: Bruce Bisping, Star Tribune file

David Levinson, a civil engineering professor at the University of Minnesota, said the problem with the intersection comes down to one thing: “The problem is too many cars, and there’s too much traffic for the capacity there.”

And it’s not a new problem.

There are two ways to remedy the deluge of traffic, Levinson said: Increase capacity or reduce the number of cars.

He is one of a group of local transit enthusiasts who’ve come up with a variety of ideas for improving the bottleneck, from removing some freeway access to transforming the intersection into a roundabout.

Levinson has suggested eliminating through traffic on Hennepin and transforming the space into a transit mall with space for pedestrians, bicyclists and a fixed mass-transit route.

Even if those ideas were implemented someday — they’re not part of the project that will begin next year — it’s unlikely that Hennepin’s importance as a transit corridor would change.

“It’s always going to be a bottleneck of some kind because it’s a critical intersection, and there’s a lot of people who want to get from downtown to Uptown,” Levinson said.

I suppose they found me because of the streets.mn post: What if we closed Hennepin?