E Grand Avenue Complete Streets Conversion

Grand Avenue from 2nd Avenue to E Pennsylvania Avenue


The E Grand Avenue Complete Streets Conversion Project is a Connect Downtown pilot project. The goal of the project is to provide better access for all users (pedestrians, transit uses, bicyclists, and vehicles) while also increasing safety for everyone. Safety is improved by reducing vehicle travel lanes, enhancing pavement markings with colored and more visible markings, and improving pedestrian crossings at intersections. These changes are expected to lower vehicle speeds and make the corridor more desirable for all users.

Protected bike lanes are different from conventional bike lanes where the bike lanes are placed along the curb and protected from vehicle traffic. It is the first of its kind in the City of Des Moines. This project is meant to be constructed with low-cost, temporary improvements to give the City time to see how the concept functions. This trial period also allows the public to get used to new configuration and provide valuable feedback to the City on what works and what doesn’t. The hope is after the pilot program (approximately 2 years), a more permanent solution with raised median, landscaping, and more durable pavement markings can be completed. 

The E Grand Avenue Complete Streets Conversion Project will reconfigure the existing lane layout of three traffic lanes (2-WB, 1 EB), a westbound bike lane, and curb parking on both sides. The new configuration will include 1 traffic lane in each direction, parallel parking on both sides, a 3’ painted buffer lane, and protected bicycle lanes in either direction. The bike lanes will be along the curbs to completely separate the bike lane from the vehicle traffic. The intersections will include painted medians with vertical delineator poles to provide a better protected crossing for bicyclists and pedestrians. The corridor will also include green conflict zone markings to notify drivers of the presence of bicyclists. Bus stops will include raised islands for increased visibility.

The project will be constructed in 2 phases. The first phase will be from Robert D. Ray Drive to E Pennsylvania Avenue. This project will include a full day closure(6:00am-6:00pm for contractors to apply a thin pavement overlay (fog seal) to provide a uniform base and make the new pavement markings more visible. After the full closure the remaining pavement markings, vertical delineators, and bus stop improvements will be completed. The pavement markings will be completed over night over the course of approximately 3 nights. Based on the signed contract, the Contractor will have 2 weeks to complete this work. Parking along Grand Avenue will be restricted on certain blocks depending on what work is happening.

The remaining work from Robert D. Ray Drive across the Grand Avenue Bridge to 2nd Avenue will be completed with the Bridge Project. This portion of the project will connect to the existing bike lanes along Grand Avenue and provide a continuous westbound bike lane from the Pappajohn Sculpture Park to the State Capitol. For more information on the Grand Avenue Bridge project please refer to the project page here.


July 10 2017 Contract Award
August 17, 2017 Anticipated Construction Start
August 22, 2017 Full Road Closure
September 8, 2017 Phase 1 Markings (Robert D Ray – Penn Ave) Completed
Fall 2017 Phase 2 (2nd Ave – Robert D Ray) Completed


Council Workshop Presentation
Protected Intersections for Bicyclists

How-To Graphics
Complete Streets Concept Overview
Left Turn from Bike Lane

Questions, Comments, Concerns? Click Here to let us know what you think about the E Grand Avenue Complete Street Pilot Project.


Iowa Signal Inc.


Please contact us by email or call (515) 283-4920.

Project Updates (3)

Project Feedback and How-To Graphics
by C. Bogenreif on September 05, 2017

As people get used to the new configuration of the E Grand Complete Streets Pilot Project we want to hear from you! Please check out the updated resources panel on the Project Page that includes a link to an interactive Wikimap that allows you to provide vital feedback on what works, what doesn't, and how we can improve the E Grand corridor.

Also new to the resources panel are How-To graphics that explain different aspects of navigating the new configuration. Please take a look to get a better understanding of the ins and outs of the project.

 Quick Project Update - Most of the major work has been completed. Some upcoming work may require some minor traffic impacts but no fill road closures are expected. The final green intersection pavement markings will be completed by the end of the week. These markings include the two stage left turn bike boxes at the intersections of E 4th, E 5th, and E 6th. The raised bus stops will be constructed before the end of September with minor traffic signal improvements and improved signage to follow.

Pavement Marking Schedule
by C. Bogenreif on August 24, 2017

Due to weather delays earlier this week the pavement marking schedule has been pushed back. The pavement markings will be completed overnight with the street closed in sections to allow most side streets to remain open. Below is the updated schedule, weather depending:

Thursday, 8/24 at 6pm to Friday, 8/25 at 6am Robert D Ray to E 4th Street
Monday, 8/28 at 6pm to Tuesday, 8/29 at 6am E 4th Street to E 6th Street
Tuesday, 8/29 at 6pm to Wednesday, 8/30 at 6am E 6th Street to E Penn Ave

Please check back for more updates on this project.

E Grand Road Closure Moved to Tuesday, August 22
by Corey Bogenreif on August 21, 2017

Due to inclement weather today, the road closure on E Grand between Robert D Ray and Penn Ave has been rescheduled for tomorrow, August 22nd starting at 6:00am. Parking will be restricted starting at this time. Please check back for more project updates.