A debate that went on for years in Davenport came to an end Wednesday night.

City council voted to approve changing 3rd and 4th streets downtown into two-ways.

Council members split down the middle, 5-5. Mayor Mike Matson broke the tie in favor of the change.

Opponents of changing the streets spoke, hoping to change some minds at the last minute.

They brought up pedestrian safety, the possibility of head-on collisions and fewer places to park — but to no avail.

The change won’t happen immediately. It’s a major project that will take place next summer at the earliest.

That time in between would give downtown businesses and planners time to prepare.

“It has a strong sense of place, and this is one more step to helping to bring back a sense of neighborhood and a sense of — really a place to be,” 3rd Ward Alderman Marion Meginnis said.

The first step is resurfacing both streets. Then both streets would need to be remarked. Signs and traffic lights would need to be changed too.

“I’m very much in favor of the conversion to two-way traffic,” Alderman At-large J.J. Condon said. “I think it’s … the most impactful thing left that we can do to support the revitalization that we’ve realized downtown.”

It’s about a $20 million project — $9 million of it for resurfacing alone.

“There is a lot of work that’s going to be going on in the City of Davenport come next July, when the next fiscal year starts,” Meginnis said. “None of the commitment to the other projects that we have in the city has been made less because of the projects that we’re doing here.”

But there is plenty of potential inconvenience while that happens. A study shows about 10,000 cars use both streets each day.