Louisville to get $307,000 for pedestrian safety programs - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Louisville to get $307,000 for pedestrian safety programs

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) - Crossing the street should be safe, but Louisville has one of the highest rates of pedestrian deaths in the country.

The city was one of three metro areas awarded grant money by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Philadelphia and New York City also made the list.

Louisville competed with 22 other cities for safety grants due to the city’s pedestrian fatalities, which are higher than national average. The funding, $307,000, is aimed at improving safety for pedestrians across the city’s streets.

Vince Jarboe, president of the Southwest Dream Team, says their non-profit is looking to bring more business into under-served areas.

"This area of Dixie Highway right here generally sees 60,000 cars a day," he said.

His group is working on a corridor project with added safety features.

"There's going to be 10-foot sidewalks on both sides, more lighting, better crosswalks, and much more median work," said Jarboe.

That project will start later this year or in the spring of 2015 but it’s not part of the city’s grant money. The improvements are still greatly needed in our area.

Eight pedestrians were killed in Louisville in 2012. Last year that number more than doubled to 17.

Louisville will use its $307,000 dollars in grant money for programs as part of a three-year plan to target drivers, school kids, police, and seniors. City staff will also keep an eye on deadly areas known for pedestrian fatalities.

Take for instance a busy section of Dixie Highway where you can't even see a stoplight until you go about a mile down the road. They’re not close together and residents say if there's not a crosswalk, they'll cross anyway."

"And so we're running across the street and you have to stop and wait for cars and most of them don't care they keep going," said Diana Merideth.

That dilemma is not only on Dixie Highway, but also several other spots around Louisville.

The grant money will also be used for education programs within JCPS, teaching kids the right way to cross so they don't end up as another statistic.

"I mean yea I'm scared about getting hit, it sucks, I mean you have to walk all the way down here to cross the road," said one woman on Dixie Highway.

The money will also help LMPD officers. They'll use decoy programs at high-crash locations to make sure people follow the rules at the crosswalk.

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