After 35 Years of Project Limbo, Administration Secures Unanimous Council Support to Execute $45 Million Champlain Parkway Construction Contract

Burlington, Vt. –  The Weinberger administration successfully secured approval for a construction contract to build the Champlain Parkway by a unanimous vote of the City Council during the April 25 Council meeting. The $45 million contract will improve traffic circulation, alleviate overburdened roadways, protect Lake Champlain through enhanced stormwater management, and improve vehicular, bike, and pedestrian safety in the Southwest section of the City. 
The funding of the project comes primarily from the federal government, which is contributing 95 percent of the cost. The State of Vermont will pay 3 percent. The City of Burlington will be responsible for 2 percent of the project’s eligible costs. The City will also be responsible for certain related costs outside of the federal project scope such as development soils, landscaping and decorative lighting. 
“It has been 35 years since this project stopped mid-construction, and it has been a major, unresolved issue in this community ever since,” Mayor Miro Weinberger said. "Since taking office, I have been committed to securing an effective resolution to this multi-decade challenge. To achieve that resolution, for a decade we have worked to dramatically improve the design and functionality of the new roadway, add critical bike and pedestrian safety improvements, secure State and Federal support for a second major project – the Railyard Enterprise Project – and more.  I am grateful to our City team, and our committed State and Federal partners who got us to tonight, and to the City Council for their careful engagement and unanimous support.”  
Director of Department of Public Works Chapin Spencer said, “Through the successful efforts of multiple Administrations and multiple Councils, the project has evolved from a four-lane, high-speed highway into a new two-lane City-street with extensive bike, pedestrian and stormwater improvements. Thank you to Vermont Agency of Transportation and Federal Highway Administration for supporting this work.” 
The Champlain Parkway will be a two-lane, 25 MPH road which is designed with pedestrians, cyclists, visitors and residents in mind. The project will connect the South End with downtown Burlington, alleviating traffic on neighborhood streets while providing an opportunity to safely navigate 2.8 miles of roadway. Additional enhancements to the streetscape include: stormwater water quality improvements that reduces sediment loading to the lake, undergrounding of aerial utilities on Lakeside Avenue, improved accommodation for pedestrians and cyclists with the development of a shared use path along Pine Street, and traffic signal improvements with pedestrian signalization. 
The initial construction phase includes more than $40 million of improvements between Home Avenue and Kilburn Street. Construction is anticipated to begin by July of this year and be completed in 2024.  Initial work in 2022 will focus on project segments off Pine Street to coordinate construction with the Shelburne Street Roundabout project, as Pine Street is a key detour for the roundabout.  
The second and final phase is planned for 2025 through 2027 and will be coordinated with other South End projects through the South End Construction Coordination Plan, minimizing impacts on residents and businesses.   
The initial phase of construction will not make a new connection to the interstate highway system and, therefore, is not projected to increase overall traffic in the project area. 

This phasing allows the administration and City Council to work with the public in the future to determine when our community is ready for the second phase of the project that will make the interstate connection.  
The final roll call vote was 10-0, with two Council members absent.  
To learn more about the Champlain Parkway Project, click here 

Press Release Date: 
City Department: 
Mayor's Office