As of Monday April 26, construction will begin on the Temin Lakeshore Path, which runs from Willow Creek West to Oxford Road. The path will be closed for the full duration of the reconstruction project, with completion scheduled for the first week of August.
Gary Brown, assistant director for planning and landscape architecture with the University of Wisconsin’s Department of Facilities Planning and Management, feels this project is a much-needed facelift for the popular walkway on campus.
“The purpose of the Temin Lakeshore Path project is to address safety and storm water management issues currently existing on the path,” Brown said.
Much of the Lakeshore Path consists of 10-foot wide bicycle and pedestrian pathways with “deteriorating surfaces and excessive contact with street traffic,” according to a UW press release.
Many points on this path currently intersect with streets, posing a safety issue to many who run, jog or walk along this road.
“The project will correct those deficiencies and make the path safer for all users,” Brown said.
According to Brown, the project also is seeking to prevent flooding and erosion that has affected the path for many years. The new improvements will direct storm water away from the lake and into infiltration systems to minimize soil erosion into the lake.
The path is also being raised to avoid flooding towards the west campus buildings.
Renee Callaway, UW’s transportation demand management coordinator, noted the deteriorated pathway contained potholes throughout the pavement.
“The need for erosion control can clearly be seen by the cracked pathway especially on the far west path,” Callaway observed.
Another element of the project will reconfigure the boat launch on Lake Mendota off of Parking Lot 60 near the UW Hospital and would then allow for direct access from this lot.
“A large section of the existing road from Marsh Terrace to University Bay Drive will also be removed as it will no longer be needed with the boat reconfiguration,” Brown said, adding this will prevent the use of vehicles and boat trailers on roads with cyclists and pedestrians.
Although construction will last throughout the summer, Callaway said when it is complete, all will be able to enjoy the path, “without potholes!”
“This is one step in improving the quality of Lake Mendota and will benefit everyone in the long run,” Callaway said.
When the actual construction is under way, those who access the path will face detours in the area in which work is taking place.
“Although the inaccessibility of the path [during refurbishing] will affect my daily regime, the potholes and uneven pavement has been affecting my jogging for some time,” UW student Dana Ricciardi said. “The inconvenience for the summer will not exceed the benefits for next fall.”
The Temin Lakeshore Path Reconstruction project is not connected to the project that is underway for the West Campus Cogeneration Plant. This project deals with a lake water supply line. Disturbed areas are being repaired throughout the construction process.
This project, east of Willow Creek and directly west of the Natatorium, is currently closing the path as well. Brown said the work should be done in July.