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Sunday, April 26, 2015

Walking Districts in Nashville?

The emphasis of Shade Parade Nashville is to create high quality walkability for Nashville.   Currently, I am working on a few major projects:  
  • Sidewalk Project #1 - Bowling Av
  • Change the In-Lieu fee system so that develops who create density are required to put in their piece of the sidewalk network
  • Create the first Walking District in Nashville

I have been playing with the idea of Walking Districts in Nashville for some time.   But, I need help with this.  I need your feedback.  I also need to get a group together who can help me solidify this idea and advocate for it.  


Sidewalks are a long term goal.  They take diligent persistence to obtain currently.  This could change on a dime if the new mayor and council decide to properly fund The Davidson County Strategic Sidewalk Plan.  But, in the interim, I suggest we make design changes to select neighborhood roads that would make it clear that pedestrians have the right of way.

Akin to the 'bikelanes' in Nashville that entail a road decal and signage, this idea would add a speed reduction to 20 or 25mph and further signage that would alert drivers that they are entering a Walking District.

On my list is also a higher penalty for speeding in these areas (with adequate patrolling) and the addition of Walking Districts to the scoring of The Sidewalk Priority Index which Public Works uses to determine who gets sidewalk and when.

Many neighborhoods in Nashville are purely residential.  People live there.  There are no businesses.  These streets, could be reclaimed as places for children to play and neighbors to meet.  These could, no longer, be places for people to cut-through quickly on their way from point A to B.  

If this strikes you and you have comments - please let me know.  Thank you!


  1. Another term for walking districts might be "slow zones," slowing the posted speed to 25 mph and then creating traffic calming measures such as 4-way stops, mini-roundabouts, and crosswalk lights that can be triggered by pedestrians.

  2. Thanks John! Good to hear from you! The overall notion is definitely one of slowing vehicular traffic for the safety & comfort of those on foot (and bike!).

  3. I'm so proud of this effort, and I'm slated to have one of Nashville's first walking district signs right next to my home. Thank you!