Louisville has been named one of the most dangerous midwestern cities for pedestrians by the group Transportation for America. The organization looked at pedestrian deaths from 2000 to 2009 and concluded that Louisville is the 19th most dangerous metro area in the country, and second in the Midwest, behind Detroit.
Cassandra Culin with the Neighborhood Pedestrian and Bicycle Access Committee says crumbling or nonexistent sidewalks are largely to blame for the relatively high pedestrian mortality rate.
“In the older part of the city, it’s the partly-crumbling infrastructure areas where sidewalks were never built. Areas where it’s dangerous to cross roads,” she says. “And then in the more suburban areas there are many places with no sidewalks at all.”
And she’s concerned that federal budget cuts will only make the situation worse.
“Congress needs to make sure that there’s a balance in the funding that comes from the federal government among all the various users of roads, including pedestrians.”
Kentucky has received tens of millions of dollars in federal grants for sidewalk and bike lane improvements in recent decades. The stimulus package also gave Metro Government several grants to improve sidewalks.