A report last month from Smart Growth America ranked Nashville the 37th most dangerous city for pedestrians. Our city has seen a spate of pedestrian injuries and death in recent years, with 209 fatal accidents from 2004 to 2014. And though our lawmakers are doing what they can to increase safety, in the meantime it is important to stay alert to avoid pedestrian accidents in Nashville.
Nashville’s Central Precinct, which encompasses the downtown area, has roughly 15,000 vehicles pass through daily. Just last year, 84 pedestrian accidents occurred, a number that rose almost 65 percent since 2015. Of those 84 accidents, 21 were hit and runs, and nearly 60 percent took place in broad daylight.
HOW IS NASHVILLE MAKING THE CITY SAFER FOR PEDESTRIANS?
Mayor Megan Barry’s administration has put a focus on pedestrian safety. Last year, Nashville received its first diagonal crosswalk on Broadway between Second and Fifth Avenues North, and a stretch of lower Broadway downtown was made over to add street furniture and bollards to remove pedestrian areas from traffic.
One of Barry’s newest efforts to reduce pedestrian accidents is the WalkNBike Master Plan, a transportation and infrastructure plan analyzing five “E’s” for improving safety: engineering, education, encouragement, enforcement and evaluation. The plan is currently out for public comment, so if you have any suggestions on how the plan can be improved, feel free to weigh in at Nashville WalkNBike’s website.
Psalms 119: 93, “I will never forget your commandments, for you have used them to restore my joy and health.”