DAAD team members attended Street Fight, an event hosted by Nashville Civic Design Center on April 6, 2017 at the Music City Center. Janette Sadie-Kahn, a former transit commissioner of New York City, was the speaker that inspired designers, developers, and other movers and shakers who attended to think about what a pedestrian oriented city could mean for Nashvillains.
Nashville is growing, with people moving to the city every day. We can only expand the infrastructure so much, which means we must learn how to use our roads for greener and more collective modes of transportation. One of the ways Nashville is taking steps towards the future is by proposing 82 bike lanes across the city.
Improving the pedestrian landscape of the city improves the quality of life for all citizens in addition to the environmental benefits. Pedestrian-focused design can improve the economy, safety, and spirit of the community. A more walkable city will be better for business, as New York City saw 50% increase in sales along bus and bike lane corridors after implementing transit improvements. With Vision Zero (a plan to eliminate roadway fatalities and injuries) being accepted in Nashville, we will be safer. Also, city improvement isn't just about improving transportation but providing public art, where artists make murals, sculptures, or interactive works. This improves our interaction with our city and each other, allowing any facade or space to be a destination.
As Sadik-Kahn said at the presentation, "It isn't a question of engineering but imagination." We have all the tools we need to get this into action. Be bold, Nashville, and let's get creative!
Thanks to Amy Hardin at D|AAD for contributing this post.