Sunday, June 22, 2008

TDOT Fails to Work with Metro on Rosa Parks' Bike Lanes

A few days ago, Freddie O'Connell let the Salemtown neighborhood association know that, with new paving of Rosa Parks Boulevard, there was a failure to install bike lanes, but he wrote that the problem should be solved by the end of the month.

Here's Freddie's account on from the Salemtown email list:

as soon as I noticed that Rosa L. Parks was being stripped for resurfacing, I began inquiring about whether the new surface would include bike lanes since the section between Jefferson and I-65 is a designated bike route. It's a good thing I did because it's a state highway, and TDOT is notorious for its lack of coordination of Metro on projects like this. Fortunately, the Metro bike/ped coordinator is now working on a solution that will include bike lanes for much of the stretch being resurfaced.

Considering the number of kids on bikes around here and the number of people pursuing transportation alternatives, not all of whom know the rules of the road or the best practices in bike safety, I think it's important that the infrastructure itself provide safe pathways for cyclists and pedestrians.

Similarly, I think it's important that we continue to ensure that the state and Metro cannot get by shortchanging neighborhoods that have historically suffered from socioeconomic doldrums thinking that no one will notice or care.

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