Lower Payne to be resurfaced, bike lanes added

courtesy of City of St. Paul Lower Payne Avenue between Edgerton and East Seventh streets will be repaved and have bike lanes added this summer.

courtesy of City of St. Paul City engineers are planning to reconstruct Tedesco Street between Payne Avenue and the Lafayette bridge in 2020.

Plans include reconstructing Tedesco next year   


It’s time for Payne Avenue to get a fresh coat of tar, this summer. 

As a part of general maintenance, Payne Avenue, between Edgerton and East Seventh streets in the Railroad Island neighborhood, will be repaved by Ramsey County, followed by the City of St. Paul adding bike lanes.

Work is slated for this summer, but project planners said during a Feb. 28 Railroad Island community meeting an exact date had not yet been set, as contracts are still being finalized. 

Kathy Jaschke, a Ramsey County engineer, said the work involves grinding off the top two inches of pavement and then repaving and repainting the roadway.

In addition to repaving, the county’s work will also include replacing curbs and pedestrian ramps, as well as adding a median between Kenny Road and Hopkins Street to serve as a pedestrian refuge for those crossing the busy avenue. 

Jaschke said the curbing and ramps could take anywhere from two to four weeks, and the paving work could take two to three weeks. 

Lower Payne Avenue was just ripped up in 2017 when the city worked on reconstructing the Tedesco Street and the East Seventh intersections. Those particular intersections will not be repaved during this summer’s project. 

There will be no assessments for the work, as it is covered by gas and wheelage taxes. 

The city’s involvement will happen during the painting process when bike lanes are added. Fay Simer, the city engineer working on Payne Avenue bike lanes, said that the addition of bike lanes on this lower end of Payne Avenue is included in the St. Paul Bike Plan, which guides the creation of bike infrastructure across the city. 

Bike lanes are already in place on the upper section of Payne Avenue, installed back in 2016. The lanes added this summer will connect to already-existing bike facilities on upper Payne Avenue, Edgerton Street and the Bruce Vento bike trail. 

To make room for the lanes, Simer said parking on the west side of Payne between Woodward Avenue and Hopkins Street will be removed, but parking on the east side of the street will remain.

Center left turn lanes will also be removed, but drivers will still be able to make left turns.

Parking on both sides of the street will be maintained north of Hopkins.

According to traffic count data from the city, where parking will be removed between Woodward and Hopkins there are 33 legal parking spaces on both sides of the road, with 18 proposed to be removed from the west side. During traffic counts between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. on weekdays and weekends, which were considered the busiest times, the west side of Payne Avenue saw an average of three spaces used while the east side saw about six spaces used.


Looking beyond  2019

Also included during the Feb. 28 meeting was a brief presentation about work on Tedesco Street coming up in 2020. 

The city is planning to reconstruct Tedesco from Payne Avenue to the Lafayette bridge, said city engineer Chris Engelmann. The bridge will be rehabilitated in 2021. 

While there aren’t too many details, yet, as Engelmann said the city is in the early phases of planning, the gist of the plan includes smoothing out the road, improving storm drainage, adding bike lanes, fixing curbs and making ADA-compliant ramps, adding trees, upgrading the lighting and repaving driveway aprons. 

The project is estimated to cost about $3.5 million. Funding will come from street reconstruction bonds, federal funding and assessments to property owners who benefit from the project. 

City engineers are seeking feedback from neighbors on both the Payne Avenue resurfacing and next year’s Tedesco Street reconstruction.

Contact Fay Simer at fay.simer@stpaul.gov regarding the Payne Avenue project and Chris Engelmann at 651-266-6084 or chris.engelmann@ci.stpaul.mn.us about the Tedesco Street project. 

Updates on the Payne Avenue project can be found at www.stpaul.gov/bikeprojects and information about the Tedesco project can be found at www.stpaul.gov/construction.


–Marjorie Otto can be reached at 651-748-7816 or at eastside@lillienews.com

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