|This is my neighborhood. It is highly walked at all hours. |
But, you can see that we don't have sidewalks. Many Nashville neighborhoods look like this.
***I'm not a lawyer. But this is what I see as the major differences in our current pedestrian bill (Metro Government of Nashville Code of Ordinances - Title 12, Chapter 12.52 Pedestrians): Old Pedestrian Bill & the proposed new bill: New Pedestrian Bill
1. A clear acknowledgement that Nashville is woefully behind in sidewalk infrastructure, that the need for sidewalks is great and that we do not fund them adequately to have them built in a timely way
2. A major shift from pedestrians to yield to vehicles TO vehicles to yield to pedestrians
3. The addition of a 3 foot passing rule
4. The addition of vehicles to slow when passing a pedestrian
- For point 2, 3, and 4, easiest to see in Sect D of both bills:
- Old Pedestrian Bill: Except as otherwise provided in this title, ANY PEDESTRIAN UPON A ROADWAY SHALL YIELD THE RIGHT-OF-WAY TO ALL VEHICLES upon the roadway.
- New Pedestrian Bill: Where neither a sidewalk nor a shoulder is available, ANY PEDESTRIAN walking on the left side of a two-way public roadway in a residential area SHALL HAVE THE RIGHT TO THE USE OF A THREE FOOT SECTION OF THE STREET measured from the edge of the street and shall have the right-of-way thereon. Under these conditions, the VEHICLE DRIVER SHALL ALSO SLOW TO A REASONABLE SPEED AND DRIVE WITH REASONABLE DUE CARE TO ENSURE SAFETY OF ALL ROAD USERS.
I truly see this as the beginning of placemaking for our pedestrians. They now have a legal right to be in the road when no sidewalk is provided. Pedestrians are to be passed with care: given 3' similar to the bicycle rule and the driver is to slow.
A step in the right direction, Nashville!
To read more about pedestrians who have been struck and killed in Nashville, see: Nasvhville Pedestrian Death Registry