Council Votes To Make Davenport’s 3rd & 4th Streets Two-Way Roads
A conversation that’s been ongoing since the 1980’s finally hit a resolve. Tonight, the Davenport City Council voted in favor of a proposal that makes 3rd & 4th Streets in downtown Davenport two-way roads.
The council voted to make 3rd & 4th two-way roads between River Drive and Marquette Street. The vote was tied 5-5 with Mayor Matson making the final vote to break the tie, which is what happened in the last reading. It came after several citizens voiced their opposition or agreement for the conversion.
How This Will Work
Expect to see the change when the city begins resurfacing the roads in 2023-2024. The proposal from the Downtown Davenport Partnership to convert 3rd & 4th to two-ways will be at the same time that the city was already planning a resurfacing project on the roads in that time.
The Great Downtown Debate
Before there was ever a local debate about pickle wraps, there was the argument about 3rd & 4th Streets. The roads were made one-ways back in the 1950’s because it was easier access for the department stores in downtown. One argument has been that it is just dated and would benefit businesses on both sides of the street to make the roads two-ways.
Kyle Carter, the Executive Director of the Downtown Davenport Partnership, told KWQC back in the summer:
We don’t have that congestion anymore, the roads were converted to deal with the congestion that they had at that time. So now we’re looking at updating this infrastructure to match our modern needs. And our modern needs are very different.
The conversion has mixed reactions from downtown businesses. Look at the stickers and petition that have been outside of Sweet Delite on W. 4th Street:
But other downtown Davenport business owners agree with the conversion:
One argument against the change is the traffic flow confusion it could cause.
Quad-City Times reports that it was a very close vote to move the proposal forward in it’s last reading back in the summer, with Mayor Matson being the tiebreaker to carry it. The full proposal not only includes the $1.6 million conversion from River Drive to Marquette but also $450,000 to extend it to Division Street and $1.2 million to extend it to Telegraph Road because of rail signals that will be replaced at 3rd & 4th Streets.
In the summer, some residents at the meeting asked if the conversion could be put onto a ballot but officials said that Iowa state law doesn't allow this kind of measure to go on a ballot.