ROCHESTER, Minn. (FOX 47) -- The Rochester City Council on Monday signed off on a plan to take control of the downtown stretch of Broadway Avenue with the provision that the state will provide the city money for all future maintenance.
The move would allow the city to make changes to Broadway without needing permission from MnDOT.
"One of the things that we know as downtown leaders is that this side of Broadway is far more successful than this side and a big reason for that is that it's hard for people to get across the street," said Michael Wojcik, Rochester City Council member. "We believe that if we design the street better, we're going to have more thriving businesses particularly at the street level on this side of Broadway."
City council members say they would like to change the time on lights, giving a longer gap so people can cross the street more safely.
The city will own the downtown stretch of Broadway Avenue from 37th Street Northeast to the U.S. 52 south interchange. The idea is to redesign the street to accommodate business and pedestrians.
The main idea is to get dump trucks and semis and other traffic that aren't actually doing business in Rochester and re-route that traffic around the city in a more efficient way and keep the stretch of downtown Broadway for people coming to downtown Rochester and thriving business.
The plan is to move the congestion of through traffic in a more efficient way by rerouting it around the city.
"Somebody headed northbound from Stewartville to Lake City would come up the existing U.S. 63, get on the interchange with Highway 52, take Highway 52 to the 75th Street exit and take 75th Street over to where they are building a new roundabout at the intersection of 75th Street and U.S. 63 and then continue on 63 northbound," said Wojcik.
The goal is that rerouting traffic will bring more business to the downtown area.
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