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Ridgewood Neighborhood Association

Breaking News: Lien Rd. to close on March 8.
See "2010 Road Construction" Update Below.


Important Neighborhood News

High Speed Rail Coming Soon to a Neighborhood Near You
February 21, 2010

With the approval of $810 million of federal stimulus money toward the construction of high-speed rail from Milwaukee to Madison, the long-rumored issue of trains traveling through Ridgewood Neighborhood has become reality.  The trains, which will eventually reach speeds of up to 110 mph, will pass through the north side of the neighborhood along tracks that cross Lien Rd. and N. Thomspon Dr.  Up to 6 trains will traverse the route between Milwaukee and Madison daily, meaning traffic along Thompson Dr will be stopped up to 12 times daily.  Trains will most likely travel through at a speed much less than 110 mph, but could still snarl traffic for several minutes for each crossing.

The 80-mile Madison to Milwaukee line will receive $810 million for new and renovated stations and track improvements to extend Amtrak's existing Hiawatha service from Chicago to the state capital, according to advance details from the White House. The state's existing Milwaukee to Chicago line will receive $12 million to do track and signal improvements to improve timeliness and prepare for eventual 110 mph service. In October, state officials estimated the project would cost $651.8 million, and said the remainder of the money would be used as a reserve if the project goes over budget.  Another $1 million is being awarded to study a possible high-speed rail line between Madison and Minneapolis and St. Paul.

"This is a major job creation project that will provide a long-term boost to our economy," Gov. Jim Doyle said in a statement. "Through high-speed rail we will connect the major centers of commerce in Wisconsin and in the region. This was a national competition and the results clearly demonstrate that Wisconsin had a very strong application."

Work on the project could start relatively soon, since the state has already done most of the preliminary work and planning. But the 110 mph service to Madison could take until 2016, according to the state's October request for the money from the Federal Railroad Administration. The Legislature's budget committee has signed off on spending the federal stimulus money, and although both Republican candidates for Wisconsin's next governorship have said they don't support the initiative, it is unclear that once the project starts if they will have any power to stop it.

The announcement drew immediate praise from the state's delegation in Congress. U.S. Rep. Tammy Baldwin, D-Madison, said the effect in a state struggling with high unemployment could go beyond short-term jobs.  Madison's mayor, Dave Cieslewicz also praised Gov. Jim Doyle and other state leaders for securing the money calling it perhaps one of the governor's "greatest legacies."  High speed rail has been an on-and-off wish of Madison's leaders since 1971. 

Madison's mayor also recently pushed the state DOT for 2 stops in Madison, even though the plan submitted to the federal government by state leaders only mentions one.  For more on that side of the story, play the video below.  

Information for this story was taken from an article that originally appeared in the Wisconsin State Journal.  The
video is courtesy of channel3000.com.

Who Are We?

The Ridgewood Neighborhood Association is an active organization that is a strong voice in the shaping of issues that confront not only our east side neighborhood, but also the entire city of Madison. We successfully stopped the unwanted Lockwood development in our neighborhood and worked closely with Gold Leaf, on a mixed-residential community, known as Autumnwood III on the north side of Lien Road.

We are also working on both short-term and longer-term transportation issues. These include studying the High Speed Rail Initiative and working in conjunction with state, county and city governments to find solutions to traffic problems that plague our area.  Recent efforts that have been successful include the reconfiguration of two intersections in the Hwy. 30 and Thompson Dr corridor that plagued our residents.  Of current concern are improvements to the Lien Rd corridor and the "PDQ intersection."

We are also working closely with the Department of Transportation on the Stoughton Road (Hwy. 51) Needs Assessment and have successfully lobbied the City of Madison to install traffic calming devices at several areas in our neighborhood, including traffic circles on Glacier Hill Dr. and stop lights at the corner of N. Thompson Dr. and Sycamore Ave.

The neighborhood also received a Planning Grant (NPG) from the city in the amount of $10,000 to help identify goals for the area concerning development, parks, traffic and safety, and public infrastructure.  This grant led to the production of a land-use document which will guide future developments in the area.

As Madison's far-east side continues to expand and develop it will be critical for our neighborhood to make its wants and desires known to the larger community via our neighborhood association.  With your continued support through your comments, attendance at meetings, and community service and involvement, we can continue to strengthen the Ridgewood Neighborhood and ensure the needs of its members are met.

What's New?

High Speed Rail
(See story on left)

2010 Road Construction Update
(See story below, left)

Where Are We?

2010 Road Construction Update
By Jeremy Kautza; RNA Webmaster

February 21, 2010
Updated: March 5,2010
Two major road construction projects will snarl traffic this spring and summer in our neighborhood.  Crews are currently scheduled to reconstruct the "PDQ intersection" and also replace the bridges carrying I-39, 90, 94 traffic over Lien Rd.  In addition there will be upgrades to railroad crossings on Lien and Thompson.  Crews also plan on upgrading utilities in the affected area.

Construction on the interstate bridge over Lien Rd. will begin on or around March 8.  The state Department of Transportation said lane closures on the interstate are only expected to last one night, starting at 6:30 p.m. Monday until 6 a.m. Tuesday.  During the rest of the construction period, which should last until September, all lanes are expected to stay open, except for periodic lane closures during off-peak traffic hours.

The headaches will come for drivers using two ramps and Lien Road itself.  The eastbound (southbound) entrance ramp to the interstate from High Crossing Boulevard will be closed, beginning March 8 and continuing through May.  Motorists on High Crossing will be routed to U.S. 151 (East Washington Avenue) to access the eastbound (southbound) lanes of the interstate.

The ramp to the eastbound (southbound) interstate from eastbound Wisconsin 30 will be shut down on March 29 and closed until mid-June.  Motorists on Wisconsin 30 will be routed to U.S. 51 (Stoughton Road) and then north to the eastbound interstate.

Lien Road will be closed where the interstate crosses overhead, from Wednesday, March 10, through June.

Motorists on Lien Road east of the interstate will be routed to Felland Road then north to Nelson Road and west to U.S. 151.  Motorists on Lien Road west of the interstate will be routed to Zeier Road, then north to U.S. 151, north to Nelson Road and east to Felland Road.

As more information on the other projects becomes available, we'll post it here.  Check back for future updates.


Lien Rd Overpass to be Replaced in 2010

By Jeremy Kautza; RNA Webmaster
August 18, 2008; (Project Map Added on December 8, 2008)

The I-39/90/94 bridges passing over Lien Rd will be replaced in 2010 and plans for construction were outlined at a public meeting held on August 13.  Improvements to Lien Rd from Glacier Hill Dr to City View Dr will also be part of the project.

The Wisconsin Department of Transportation is responsible for the project.  According to information released by them, the main goal is to replace the deficient bridges with wider and longer bridges to meet traffic capacity needs.  Currently, the bridges create a "choke point" for traffic merging onto and off of the interstate.  In addition, Lien Rd will need to be widened under the bridges as traffic volumes indicate the need for 4 future lanes of traffic and for bicycle and pedestrial accomodations.  The new bridges will accomodate these future needs.  The current bridges do not.

Project design is expected to be completed by May, 2009 with construction beginning in the spring of 2010.  Construction will last through the summer and should be complete by late 2010.  When complete, the interstate will have 4 lanes of traffic in each direction along with a longer ramp for drivers merging onto north I-39 from west I-94.  In addition, Lien Rd will be widened to 4 lanes complementing the recent Lien Rd improvements from Thomspon Dr to Glacier Hill Rd. 

To see a summary of the August 13 meeting, click on the first link below.  The second link shows a cross-section of how the finished roadways will be constructed.  The final link shows the DOT's recommended detour for drivers.  While not the most direct route available the DOT was committed to not suggesting a route that would potentially increase traffic throughout the neighborhood.  Of course, neighborhood residents can find and use routes that are more convenient to their needs.

2010 Lien Rd Overpass Project Description

2010 Lien Rd Overpass Project Map

Lien Rd Project Cross-Sections

Recommended Lien Rd Detour

Message from the Webmaster:

While the RNA is no longer an "active" organization, we continue to work on issues that impact our neighborhood and our residents.  If you are interested in helping shape the future of the neighborhood, or if there is an issue that you feel passionately about, please contact Joe Campana (past Association President) or Jeremy Kautza (webmaster).  

As our webmaster, when news that affects our neighborhood surfaces, I will do my best to keep you informed.  In addition, if anyone provides any information relevant to the neighborhood I will include it on this website.

This website was created and is maintained by our webmaster Jeremy Kautza. Several people, most notably Joe Campana, have also contributed content appearing on this site.

Since inception, you are visitor number:


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