All over Chittenden County, residents are clamoring for more sidewalks and crosswalks. Unfortunately, getting them built is proving difficult. In Hinesburg and Colchester, tight budgets have put sidewalk projects on hold.
Last week in Burlington, nearly 20 residents packed a Burlington Public Works Commission meeting to voice their support for a critical sidewalk connection between their homes and Edmunds School (see map). The sidewalk (see picture) currently deadends onto South Willard Street – aka US Route 7.
Parents, children, and transportation planners supported the position of DPW staff to build this 100 foot section of sidewalk along South Willard Street. The Commission 4-3 against moving forward with staff’s recommendation to build the sidewalk because of one neighbors’ concern over losing one on-street parking space in front of their home. Neighbors and Local Motion are determined to get the sidewalk project moving again.
Hill section neighbor and Local Motion member Daniel Scheidt says “My children would like to walk to school more than they do. The biggest obstacle is a mid-block crossing of Willard Street that requires kids to cross without benefit of a stop light, stop sign or crossing guard. Although this is a designated ‘safe route to school’ and DPW has been studying the project for at least three years, the sidewalk needed to correct the problem hasn’t been built. We urge the City to build the sidewalk this year.”
Want to help? Contact Charlene Wallace.
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