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Saturday, February 22, 2014

Green Hills Area Transportation Plan Includes Increased Sidewalks & Improved Walkability - Sidewalk Project #1, update





I am happy to introduce that the Green Hills Area Transportation Plan includes sidewalks on major arterial-Boulevard roads such as Hillsboro, Woodmont, Woodlawn and Bowling!  

The first thing that is readily apparent is the breaking up of some of the superblocks that makes walking in Green Hills difficult.  There are numerous examples of streets that just end in this area particularly off of Woodmont.  There is talk of extending Abbott Martin eastward so that it does not terminate into Hillsboro but continues on parallel to Richard Jones.  

I encourage you to look at the plan and keep an open mind.  These changes are good for walkers.
  

I often hear at these meetings someone complaining that sidewalks &/or bike lanes are not needed because no one currently uses them.  As you can imagine, if the infrastructure is not conducive to foot or bike traffic or if one feels unsafe - it does have limited use.  For example, currently on Hillsboro there are numerous obstacles in the actual sidewalk.  




The night time lighting is set for car height.  All signage and store fronts are designed for vehicle viewing and access. Before you can even visualize the store fronts - you have to traverse deep parking lots!



  

There is very little that says 'walk here' currently in the Green Hills Business District.  In fact, it seems to have been literally designed to say - stay away if you are on foot. And, people wonder why they rarely see a pedestrian in Green Hills!

And, yet, the actual distance between businesses is very doable on foot. For example, from Whole Foods to the Post Office is 1/2 mile.  I do my errands on foot when in Green Hills & am walking faster than traffic.  



I also heard that there are going to be B-cycles at the Green Hills YMCA so you could park and run your errands via bicycle. Nice!




Below are images of the proposed sidewalks in green.  


Directly in the middle, running up & down, is Bowling.  You can see that a portion is purple indicating where the sidewalk, on the west side of the street, ends.  Woodlawn and Woodmont are also proposed to be sidewalked!









If you want sidewalks for Nashville, this is the time to act.  Passivity is literally getting us nowhere.  In the last 2 years, only 3 new miles of sidewalks have been created.

The councilperson for Green Hills is Sean McGuire. His email is:  sean.mcguire@nashville.gov

I would encourage you to seek support, too, from your local councilperson.  The more people pushing for improvements in the Green Hills business district - the faster it will occur.  







   



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