An opportunity to put in high quality sidewalks therefore creating a rich culture of WALKING rather than DRIVING.
The Sidewalk In-Lieu Fee was supposed to help but it has been a failure. A full-on, bottom of the barrel, failure...it was designed to allow developers, who are required to build sidewalks when they create density to, instead, pay a fee if the area was considered in lower need of walkability.
But, unfortunately, with so much development, ALL of Nashville now NEEDS sidewalks.
So, time passes and the sidewalks were not built. The fund has accrued a measly 1 million dollars - just enough to build one mile of sidewalk for the whole city of Nashville. I am hearing stories now that most developers don't even pay the fee and that is why the collection is pitiful. There appears to be no automatic paperwork generated when a developer pulls the permit to create density - so, if the guy at Public Works doesn't think to charge the in-lieu fee - it does not happen.
In addition, the development community seems entirely confused - some saying that 'Sidewalks that run in front of a house as part of a neighborhood are constructed by the city not the home builder. We cannot construct public sidewalks ... when there are no existing city sidewalks in the neighborhood to tie into', from Superior Build in East Nashville.
|Recently emailed to me - have to say I love the idea of questioning where the sidewalk is...why WASN'T it built???|
Just saying...I think we have missed a wonderful opportunity to have sidewalks put in WITH construction AND paid for by developers who are changing the face of Nashville. If there is one thing you could do, I would encourage you to talk to developers when they come to your block. Ask them to BUILD the SIDEWALK rather than pay the fee (or not pay anything as seems to be more common case).