Residents in several Florida communities are demanding sidewalks and various other traffic safety features, such as bike lanes, wider pedestrian paths, more trails, better lighting and more practical landscaping.
In Manatee County, for example, there have been several recent road improvement projects that have included newer and safer amenities for pedestrians. The $2.6 million Rye Road improvement project between Rye Bridge and State Route 64 will be accompanied by a $400,000 effort to create a 12-foot-wide sidewalk. The sidewalk runs adjacent to the eastern boundary line of the Mill Creek neighborhood past Witt Elementary School.
According to planners, wider sidewalks make it safer for students walking between their homes and the school and can help to ease traffic near the school at drop-off and pick-up times by creating more areas for parents to stop their vehicles.
Wider sidewalks a current trend in infrastructure design
Mill Creek is not the only neighborhood to have wider sidewalks proposed as a major design element. They have become a trend in infrastructure design on a state and national level.
In the past, sidewalks tended to be between four and six feet wide, but now, 10-foot and 12-foot sidewalks are becoming much more common to improve pedestrian safety. They are becoming especially prevalent near heavy-traffic areas, such as schools and shopping centers.
Officials say that local governments are also getting better at coordinating all modes of transportation in ways that relieve congestion while also making them safer for all people — including motorists, bicyclists and pedestrians.
If you or someone close to you has been injured due to the negligence of another party, speak with an experienced Bradenton pedestrian accident attorney at Shapiro, Goldman, Babboni, Fernandez & Walsh.