Back in April, a group of volunteers temporarily spray painted some of the roads in downtown Lake Charles as part of the "Better Block" demonstration. It was a way to demonstrate what it would be like to have bicycle and pedestrian lanes in our city. Some were excited about it, and others not so much.

Approximately seven months later, the "Completed Streets" policy has officially gone into effect, and according to a City of Lake Charles media release, "Bike paths will soon connect Prien Lake Road with the downtown area and I-10 along Kirkman Street. Another trail is being striped along Pujo Street between Kirkman and Bilbo Streets."

It's a project that's been approved by the City Council, and Mayor Nic Hunter says more trails will be constructed in the future as part of the city's "Bicycle and Pedestrian Master Plan", which will take several years to fully implement.

“Many of these bike paths can be created simply by restriping our existing roadways. We’ve identified the paths most likely to be used by cyclists and have matched them with roadways that need restriping, so that many of these trails can be created without additional dollars. They’re streets that we can use more efficiently." - Mayor Nic Hunter.

Pujo Street will be restriped into a one-lane road between Kirkman and Bilbo Streets. A parking lane will be added on the north side of Pujo St. between the bike lane and the curb, said Planning Director Mike Huber.

"Lake Charles is going to be a more livable, more walkable, more bikeable community. We’re trying to support that with the addition of bike lanes annually." - Huber

There are areas where a bike lane won't be permitted, like parts of Kirkman for example, where a "shared lane for cars and bicyclists will be implemented."

"The goal is to extend the Kirkman Street path down to McNeese Street, creating a corridor that smaller paths can join," said the media release.

The "Bike and Pedestrian Master Plan" can be reviewed at cityoflakecharles.com. Call 491.1429 for more information.

City of Lake Charles