Two-Way Street Conversions
One-way streets can often be dangerous, especially for pedestrians, because they were designed to move cars as quickly as possible from one destination to another. According to Smart Growth America's Dangerous by Design 2022 report, pedestrian fatalities have increased 62% since 2009, with disproportionately higher fatality rates in minority and low-income neighborhoods, because the design of our streets prioritizes speed over safety. Two-way streets are proven to be safer and simpler for all road users, especially pedestrians.
Advantages of one-way to two-way street conversion include:
Increased safety – traffic flows slower on two-way streets, decreasing the number of crashes and reducing crash severity.
Improved circulation – two-way streets promote more efficient circulation, creating more direct street routes to destinations.
Increased visibility for businesses/organizations – two-way streets increase the foot-traffic of businesses/organizations because they are more visible and accessible.
Increased mobility – two-way streets are easier to navigate and cause less confusion for drivers trying to access destinations. Additionally, two-way street networks often decrease the walking distance from parking facilities and bus stops.
Current Two-Way Conversion Projects
- Phase I (Downtown and Surrounding Neighborhoods)
After the massive Ohio River Bridges Project was completed in late 2016, Louisville Metro Public Works began the process of restoring several Metro-owned streets in downtown and surrounding neighborhoods to two-way traffic, as recommended by multiple planning studies. Portions of S. 3rd Street were converted to two-way traffic in 2018 and 2019 (between Main-Market and between Liberty-Broadway). The following streets are slated to be converted to two-way traffic.
- E. Jefferson Street (S. Floyd St - Baxter Ave)
- E. Liberty Street (S. Jackson St - Baxter Ave)
- E. Muhammad Ali Blvd (S. Jackson St - Chestnut Street Connector)
- E. Chestnut Street (S. Jackson St - Chestnut Street Connector)
- S. 7th Street (W. Main St - W. St. Catherine St)
- S. 8th Street (W. Market St - W. Kentucky St)
- S. Shelby Street (E. Main St - E. Muhammad Ali Blvd)
- S. Campbell Street (E. Main St - E. Muhammad Ali Blvd)
E. Jefferson Street was rebid again in September 2023. (See IFB 240095.)
In the News
Many downtown one-way streets to change to two-way traffic, WAVE3.com, February 20, 2017.
Map: These Louisville streets could be changing from one-way to two-way, Courier-Journal.com, February 19, 2018.
One-way streets in Louisville may be converted to two-way streets soon, city officials say, Courier-Journal.com, August 20, 2019.
Third Street two-way conversion begins Tuesday, what you need to know, WAVE3.com, October 7, 2019.
Louisville's 2-way streets plan still idling years after launch, WDRB.com, February 9, 2023.
- Logan and Shelby Street (KY 864)
- Where: Logan Street & Shelby Street (KY 864), between Goss Avenue and E. Gray Street
- When: Construction is anticipated in Spring 2024.
- Who: Kentucky Transportation Cabinet District 5, with public outreach by Louisville Metro Government
- State Project ID: 5-193.00
Logan and Shelby Streets were identified as priority corridors for safety improvements in the 2021 state transportation budget. The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet (KYTC) is utilizing this funding and additional federal funds to convert the corridors from one-way streets to two-way streets.
An in-person public meeting was held on May 25, 2023 at Shelby Park Community Center (600 E. Oak St).
In the News
Designs released for conversion of two busy one-way streets in Louisville, WDRB.com, November 17, 2022.
Smoketown business owners hope street changes bring business to area, WHAS11.com, November 18, 2022.
- W. Chestnut Street/River Park Drive and W. Muhammad Ali Blvd
- Where: W. Chestnut Street/River Park Drive and W. Muhammad Ali Blvd, between Roy Wilkins Ave/9th Street and Southwestern Parkway
- When: This project was bundled into the federally funded Reimagine 9th Street project. Construction is expected to be completed by 2027.
- Who: Louisville Metro Public Works
In 2022, the two-way conversion of W. Chestnut Street/River Park Drive and W. Muhammad Ali Blvd was included in a U.S. Department of Transportation RAISE grant for the Reimagine 9th Street project. The one-way to two-way conversion of the corridors will take place in conjunction with improvements to Roy Wilkins Avenue/9th Street, estimated to be completed by 2027.
A virtual public meeting was held on February 17, 2021.
In the News
Louisville aims to convert several 1-way streets to 2-way traffic, WDRB.com, February 11, 2021.
These 'drive thru' streets in the West End could become two-way, giving businesses a lift, Courier-Journal.com, February 16, 2021.
Muhammad Ali Boulevard, Chestnut Street could become two-way streets, WAVE3.com, February 18, 2021.
City of Louisville asks for public opinion on changing 2 roads to two-way streets, WHAS11.com, March 3, 2021.
- 2nd and 3rd Street (KY 1020)
- Where: 2nd and 3rd Street (KY 1020), between W. Broadway and W. Cardinal Blvd.
- When: Timeline pending outcome of Safe Streets and Roads for All (SS4A) federal grant application. Award announcements are expected in December 2023. For more information, visit our Safe Streets and Roads for All page.
- Who: Kentucky Transportation Cabinet District 5 and Louisville Metro Public Works
At the request of Louisville Metro Public Works, Stantec, a planning and engineering consulting firm, prepared a report for the two-way conversion of 2nd and 3rd Streets.
An in-person public meeting was held on September 27, 2022 at the Old Louisville Visitors Center in Central Park (1340 S. 4th St).
In the News
After witnessing dozens of crashes, this Old Louisville resident wants Second Street to go two-way, SpectrumNews1.com, July 29, 2021.
Study: Aging traffic signals driving up cost of potential one-way conversions in Old Louisville, WLKY.com, September 27, 2022.
- Planning Study: S. 22nd and Dr. W. J. Hodge Street (US 150/US 31W)
- Where: S. 22nd and Dr. W. J. Hodge Street (US 150/US 31W), between Garfield Avenue and Dumesnil Street.
- When: Planning study kicked off in August 2023.
- Who: Louisville Metro Public Works hired Stantec, a planning and engineering consulting firm, to study a potential two-way conversion of S. 22nd and Dr. W. J. Hodge Street. This north-south couplet is maintained by the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet.
Plans and Studies Related to Two-Way Conversions
Last updated: November 6, 2023