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Metro Public Works to Work with City Leaders, Community to Update Strategic Plan for Sidewalks, Bikeways

October 9, 2015

Updated Plan will Address Needs, Build on Successes and Ensure Nashville is a World Class Pedestrian and Bicycle Friendly Community

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Mayor Megan Barry has directed Metro Public Works to move forward with updating the Strategic Plan for Sidewalks and Bikeways. The current plan was put in place in 2003 and was updated in 2008. The plan outlines goals, priorities and policies regarding location of the countywide sidewalk and bikeways network and establishes a method for prioritizing improvements.

“Planning for, building, and maintaining great sidewalks and bikeways are imperative for a healthy, active, safe and vibrant community. I encourage citizens to participate in this process and to work with us to ensure Nashville’s sidewalks and bikeways are safe, useable and welcoming to people of all abilities,” Mayor Barry said.

“With Mayor Barry’s leadership, we are confident that the new plan will provide the framework to ensure that pedestrians and bicyclists remain a top priority in transportation planning,” said Mark Macy, Public Works Interim Director. "I look forward to working alongside the public, getting their input on needs and priorities, and putting those ideas to use."

The process to update the current plan will include:

  • A robust and multi-faceted public participation process, including public meetings throughout the county, press releases and social media, a webpage dedicated to the plan update that will allow the public to submit comments and ideas, and more.
  • Review of the existing conditions, including where new sidewalks and bikeways need to be constructed because none currently exist as well as needs related to pedestrian and bicyclist safety and on-going maintenance.
  • Review of the evaluation method used for prioritizing sidewalk projects (pedestrian generator index, or PGI). The PGI involves analysis of a location’s proximity to schools, parks, transit and other factors.
  • Review and analysis of relevant planning documents and processes to ensure that there are common goals and consistency between plans.

Since the Strategic Plan was adopted in 2003, Metro has constructed 47 miles of new sidewalks and repaired 175 miles of sidewalks. Nashville currently has more than 1,070 miles of sidewalk. Sidewalk projects completed during 2015 include Harding Place from Timberhill Drive to Danby Drive, Murphy Road from 38th Avenue North to 40th Avenue North, Westlawn Drive/Sloan Road from Murphy Road to Park Trail Head, and the 21st and Broadway Sidewalk Realignment Project.

In the Fiscal Year 2016 capital spending plan, then-Mayor Karl Dean’s administration budgeted $25 million for improving and expanding sidewalks, the largest one-time sidewalk investment ever made by Metro Government.

There are 147 miles of bikeways across Nashville, including shared routes and dedicated lanes. There are an additional 50 miles of paved (bikeable) greenways, and an additional 67 miles of bikeways on state routes through Davidson County have also been added to our bikeway network through partnership with TDOT.

Recently completed bikeway projects include Fort Negley Blvd from 6th Avenue South to Hamilton Avenue, Nashboro Boulevard from Murfreesboro Pike to Bell Road and Natchez Trace from Blakemore Avenue to Woodlawn Drive. The 1.75 mile Davidson Street Multi-Use Path, which opened last month, is Nashville’s first and longest protected path for pedestrians and bicyclists. It is protected from car traffic through use of lane delineators. In 2012 and again in 2015, Nashville received a Bronze Award and designation as a Bicycle Friendly Community by the League of American Bicyclists.

The strategic plan update process and public meetings will begin late fall/early winter 2015. In the meantime, citizens can submit comments or questions on all facets of the plan update by clicking on "Customer Service” at this link and then completing the customer service form: http://mpw.nashville.gov/IMS/Sidewalks/default.aspx. Choose "Comments or Opinions" for type of request from the drop-down menu and enter the phrase "Strategic Plan Update" in the Request Description form.

For more information about sidewalks and the current Strategic Plan, visit: http://mpw.nashville.gov/IMS/Sidewalks/StrategicPlan.aspx

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