Will the City's WalknBike Plan Reduce Crashes and Fix 'Impossible' Crossings?
Nashville is on course to break a terrible record, as researchers anticipate there will be more fatal pedestrian accidents in the city this year than possibly ever before. From January through June 2022, Nashville has experienced 323 fatal and serious injury-causing pedestrian and cyclist accidents. By this time last year (2021), there had been 285 such crashes, according to local media.
A vexing problem
Not only are these deaths tragic, but they're also vexing. Nashville has dedicated more time, effort, and resources to reducing pedestrian and bicyclist accidents. Yet, not enough is being done to decrease the number of devastating pedestrian and cyclist accidents. This means a lot is riding on Nashville's 2022 "WalknBike" Plan to be successful. The multiyear schematic with concrete steps to improve traffic safety for pedestrians and cyclists has many supporters.
The question remains, will it be enough?
Nashville 'impossible' crossings
Nashville's plan aims to reduce accidents through infrastructure repairs, renovations, and construction. There are general timelines for specific projects to fix sidewalks and improve bikeways, among other roadway improvements. However, something we would like to see addressed and improved as soon as possible is the city's network of 50 or so "Impossible Crossings." These are streets and intersections where getting to the other side is "treacherous" for pedestrians. About half of these crossings are located in Downtown and Green Hills Midtown.
Since they were first identified in 2014, Nashville's impossible crossings have been the site of 18 fatal and over 250 serious-injury pedestrian accidents. Nashville's impossible crossings include:
- Broadway between 3rd Ave and 6th Ave.
- West End Ave.
- Nolensville Pike.
- Donelson Pike.
- George E. Davis Blvd/11th Ave.
Simple changes, big results
Deadly and serious injury-causing car accidents that involve pedestrians and cyclists can be reduced with simple infrastructure changes. For example, studies have found that bicycle lanes were associated with reduced crash odds of 40-48 percent. Nashville is employing multiple strategies to reduce accidents. In addition to adding more sidewalks and bike lanes, Nashville may utilize some of these common crash prevention methods:
- Narrowing travel lanes to encourage slower driving.
- Buffering and medians that separate pedestrians and bicycles from cars and trucks.
- More "crossbikes," basically, crosswalks for bicycles.
- Lower speed limits.
- Replacing some intersections with mini-roundabouts.
Where safety improvements are planned
The WalknBike plan lays out priority roadways for the city to improve. Among the action steps to be taken are improvements to the impossible-to-cross Nolensville Pike. The following is a list of other safety improvement projects listed in Nashville's WalknBike plan.
Sidewalks, where future improvements are planned, include:
- Murfreesboro Pk from Kermit Dr to Bowwood Ct.
- Nolensville Pk from Welch to Paragon Mills Rd.
- Gallatin Pk from One Mile Pkwy to Welworth St.
Bikeway improvements are planned for:
- Rte 12 (Rosa Parks Blvd) from James Robertson Pkwy to Courtney Ave.
- Lebanon Pk from Stones River Greenway to Highland View Dr.
Help for injured Nashville pedestrian and bicycle accident victims
If you were hit by a car as a pedestrian or while riding your bicycle in Nashville, you may be entitled to compensation for your medical bills and other losses—but it won't be easy trying to get what you deserve from the insurance company. While you concentrate on what matters most — your recovery — the legal team at the Law Office of Eric Beasley can put its knowledge, experience, and resources to work for you.
Trust a personal injury law firm that values honesty, diligence, and effective representation. Contact us right away for a free case evaluation to see how a Nashville pedestrian accident lawyer can put you in the best position to win.