$2M project plans to widen San Marcos sidewalk for safety

Sidewalks between CM Allen and Thorpe along Hopkins Street will be widened starting in 2020. (KXAN Photo)

SAN MARCOS, Texas (KXAN) – A $2 million project near downtown San Marcos plans to create a safer route for bicyclists and pedestrians. Planning for the project along Hopkins Street has already started, but people will have to wait at least three years to see any major changes.

The city says the project was first discussed in 2014, the design phase is expected to begin in the next six months. The city adds the money being spent on the project is federal funding and will help the city widen sidewalks and create pedestrian crosswalks.

Local cyclists say finding a safe route in the city has always been difficult.

“There’s not a bike lane or protected bike lane throughout a lot of main roads that are traveled upon whether you are in a car or on a bike,” said HUB Cyclery manager John Watson, whose business sits on Hopkins Street.

“Going east or west in any direction, there’s not a dedicated bike lane. There are some sidewalks, but pedestrians get upset with us as cyclists when we use the sidewalk,” said Watson of Hopkins Street.

City leaders say the project includes widening the sidewalks along Hopkins from CM Allen to Thorpe Lane. Currently, the sidewalks along that stretch are only 4 feet wide, the city plans to widen them to 10 feet.

For Watson, he says it’s a start but will continue pushing for dedicated bike lanes.

“For me, I prefer the road. You can be on the road and have a dedicated bike lane or even a protected one. I really think that would be awesome, especially going in any main travel direction for students,” said Watson.

The city is also looking to create crosswalks across Hopkins Street from City Hall to the Public Library; another will be created at Riverside to help with pedestrians crossing Hopkins after floating the river.

Construction is slated to start in 2020.

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