Greenfield Avenue Reconstruction

Milwaukee, WI

Project Overview

The reconstruction of W. Greenfield Avenue in Milwaukee transformed its neighborhood by providing an attractive, multi-modal roadway that safely serves its citizens now and will well into the future. raSmith worked with the City of Milwaukee and the Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) on this 1.2-mile reconstruction project that was part of the Southeast Region’s Local Program.

The heavily traveled two-lane road was in dire need of repair. Carrying upwards of 12,000 vehicles each day, the roadway showed its age with various types of cracking, utility cuts and settlement, the latter of which meant that the roadway’s lower layers most likely had structural deficiencies. Pavement drainage was poor and needed improvements. But perhaps most importantly, intersections with traffic signals were antiquated and provided poor visibility, contributing to a number of crashes. Over a five-year period, 18 pedestrian and bicycle crashes had also occurred, indicating that the team needed to greatly improve safety for non-motorized users of the facility.

Our transportation and traffic engineers came together to work out a design that would suit the City of Milwaukee and the needs of its travelers. Their design also incorporated about $800,000 in construction cost-saving measures. New concrete pavement and new and additional storm sewer drains led to an improved roadway surface that would not hold standing rainwater. Pedestrian accommodations were improved and brought up to Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) standards and included curb bump-outs for additional safety.

Traffic signals at the two crash-prone intersections were replaced and new lighting was welcomed, the latter of which was also replaced throughout the project limits. Greenspace was also added to the corridor; the design reduced the roadway width to add terraces and newly planted trees, which helped to reinvigorate this Milwaukee neighborhood.

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