Construction on Brownsboro Rd. "road diet" to begin - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Construction on Brownsboro Rd. "road diet" to begin

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LOUISVILLE, KY. (WDRB) -- After months of pushback, construction on the proposed Brownsboro Road diet begins Monday evening.

A visually impaired couple is giving us a different perspective on the road project than we've ever seen before. 

Imagine living life in the dark, relying on touch and sound to see you through.  Imagine the crisp colors of the world being nothing more than a haze.

"We just listen to the traffic as we walk down the sidewalk," says Jo Noel.  Once a week the visually impaired couple walks with their dog Anthony from the Kroger on Brownsboro Road back to their home.

There's a significant blind population in this part of Louisville.

It's the same four tenths of a mile section between Drescher Bridge Road and Lindsey Avenue where construction begins Monday night.  The city will narrow the path from four lanes to two, add a turn lane in the middle, and extend the sidewalk on the north side so Jo Noel can walk on the other side of the street.

"It's very frustrating and I am disappointed," says Patsy Bruner of  Area business owners formed the group to try and stop the construction, saying the proposed "road diet' will not make this a safer trek and will hurt their sales.

Bruner says, "We think it's going to cause bottleneck traffic....We had almost 3,000 signatures on petitions.  We felt like they were ignored."

Mayor Greg Fischer re-opened the $400,000 plan for public comment and decided to move ahead.

The project will affect more than the blind, as Metro Councilwoman Tina Ward-Pugh explains:  "You've got more and more bicyclists doing their shopping and eating, and you'll have a lot more pedestrians who will walk to shop."

Orange construction signs are posted to tell the public of the change.  Jo Noel knows her walk will be a bit nosier on Tuesday.  "It would help to find out what is over there," she says.  She's ready to cross the street.

The project has been in the works since 2007 and is expected to take 60 days to complete.

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