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South Holland street gets bike- and pedestrian-friendly makeover

South Holland is about to get friendlier for people who walk and ride bikes.

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Above: 170th Street after the road diet, with center turn lane and bike lanes. Below: 170th Street before construction.
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Specifically, 170th Street west of South Park Avenue to west of I-94 in South Holland are becoming more bike and walk friendly thanks to a road diet.

The Cook County project began last spring in the South Suburb that is located about 20 miles south of the loop, and should be finished this summer.

The stretch of road received a complete reconstruction that reduced the number of vehicle lanes from four to two, adding a center turn lane and bike lanes. New pavement and traffic signals were also added.

The reduction in lanes creates more space for bike lanes and increases safety by controlling vehicle traffic flow and speed.

This allows for roomier lanes and fewer lanes people walking must cross.

According to the Federal Highway Administration, when roads with four travel lanes are reduced to two travel lanes with a two-way left-turn lane, researchers see a 29 percent reduction in all roadway crashes.

The new lanes add more than one mile of new dedicated bike and pedestrian paths in the area, complimenting the already existing on-pavement bike lanes on nearby Cottage Grove Avenue from 159th Street to 170th Street