To be a walkable, bikeable and livable city Nashville needs better transit. And in order for transit to succeed in Nashville, riders must be able to walk or bike to transit stops safely and comfortably. That’s why Walk Bike Nashville supports Mayor Barry’s Let’s Move Nashville plan and is a member of the Transit for Nashville coalition.
We were excited to review the Mayor’s Transit Improvement Plan this week and see that there is significant inclusion of walking and biking infrastructure. Here’s how Mayor Barry’s ambitious transit plan, Let’s Move Nashville, stacks up for active transportation:
- Around 50 miles of new or enhanced sidewalks and crossings including:
- Along high capacity corridors
- Near Transit Centers
- At dangerous intersections
- Bike share and bicycle storage at Neighborhood Transit Centers
- Bike lanes on Rapid Bus and Light Rail corridors
- Improved crossings and bicycle access at Neighborhood Transit Centers
- Neighborhood traffic calming near routes
- School zone controls near routes
- ADA accessibility improvements near routes
This is a huge deal, and it has the potential to dramatically change the way we get our Nashville by giving options for all types of modes and all types of people. However, more details are needed. Some of the questions we have are:
- Were sidewalks included in the cost of all high capacity corridors? In particular will there be sidewalks along the rapid bus corridors as well as the light-rail corridors?
- Will there be protected and enhanced crosswalks on these corridors? How often?
- What percentage of the estimated cost would go towards crosswalks, sidewalks and bicycle connections?
- What kind of bicycle accessibility routes to Transit Centers and along transit corridors will there be?
- How far into the neighborhoods will the walkability, bikability and ADA accessibility improvements go?
It is time for all of us to talk more about all the benefits in the mayor’s transportation plan, beyond just the flashy light rails and downtown tunnel. The need for sidewalks specifically seems to be one thing Nashvillians all agree on, and they are essential to ensuring that people can actually get to our transit safely. Highlighting walking and biking improvements will help create supporters of the referendum city-wide.
You can support the best Transportation Plan possibly by sharing your thoughts with the Mayor and your council members, and by signing the petition in favor of transportation options for Nashville.