At the repeated request of area residents, the Shawnee City Commission is hosting a Broadway Project listening session at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 4, in the Bertha Ann Young Commission Chambers at City Hall, 16 West 9th St.

At the repeated request of area residents, the Shawnee City Commission is hosting a Broadway Project listening session at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 4, in the Bertha Ann Young Commission Chambers at City Hall, 16 West 9th St.

The city plans to provide a short informational session on the project and subsequently open the floor for citizens to participate by providing feedback and concerns, Shawnee City Manager Chance Allison said Monday.

Since all commissioners plan to be gathered together at the meeting, a posted agenda will be required ahead of time — though the board will not be taking action of any kind that night.

“It is only for feedback,” Ward 1 City Commissioner Ed Bolt said. “We'll just be hearing input from residents.”

To accommodate all who wish to participate, each individual will have a limited number of minutes to speak. No length of time to speak was offered.

“The City Commission and staff are excited for the opportunity to engage the citizens in collecting direct feedback on the Broadway Project,” Allison said.

Background

In recent weeks, after green, “Insert Bike Lane Here” signs began adorning lawns along Broadway, gradually more yellow “Save My Street Parking” signs popped up in opposition to the proposed project.

A few of the Broadway residents against bike lanes voiced their concerns to commissioners and requested a meeting with everyone who would be impacted by the plan.

Talk of the possibility of bicycle lanes along Broadway Street have been in the works for about two years.

Several workshops discussing comprehensive plans for Shawnee's future have been focused around what potential there is for special treatment along Broadway, such as mini-circles, medians and/or bike lanes.

In past workshops led by RDG Planning and Design, Broadway was brought up as an easy example for creating design changes with minimal cost attached.

Adding bike lanes was just one of the ideas introduced.

Since Broadway, one of the oldest and most well-traveled streets in town, is wider than most — boasting a width of 40 feet across — certain amenities could be added or adjusted with minimal cost and/or disruption of the street, as it is now. Narrower streets would have to be widened to make adequate room for bike lanes. Other ideas were also brainstormed at the workshops, such as putting a median down the center of Broadway (to slow traffic by narrowing the street), but could potentially feature parking spaces.

Nothing was determined or chosen as a specific plan moving forward, all the suggestions were just that — suggestions.

Shawnee Planning Director Rebecca Blaine said the City of Shawnee is pursuing a beautification project on Broadway that could potentially include bike lanes.

She said the idea's focus follows in partnership with the Blue Zones Project and Avedis Foundation goals.

“The Blue Zones Project office has recently sent out mailers to promote public engagement and start citizenry dialogue,” she said. “We have yet to hire a firm to formally design this project, but anticipate firm selection and the kickoff for community meetings to happen in Spring of 2020.”

Blaine said to voice comments and considerations in writing, send to: City Manager’s Office, 16 West 9th Street, Shawnee, OK 74801 or email chance.allison@shawneeok.org.

Also, share your opinions, concerns or comments — favorable or unfavorable — on the topic with The Shawnee News-Star; email vicky.misa@news-star.com.

Watch for updates.