Speaking Up for Sidewalks

City Hall in Your Neighborhood meetings started last week and we seized the opportunity to speak up for sidewalks! Accessible Transportation Coalition member, Joani Dotson, volunteered to make a case for increasing sidewalk funding in the Capital Improvements Package. Here is her recap:

CIP meeting on Tuesday night was pretty tame and very interesting. The mostly highly discussed item was encouragement of downtown/PED projects, especially in the realm of the retaining/drawing young professionals to the area. The statement ATC made:

“The Accessible Transportation Coalition, its partners and advocates are discouraged by the continual decreases of funding allocated for arterial and non-arterial street sidewalks in the draft CIP package. The first draft produced by City Council allocated $4 million for both arterial and non-arterial sidewalks, totaling $8 million. The most recent draft indicates only $1.5 million will be allocated for arterial sidewalks, and $500,000 for non-arterial sidewalks. Districts 7 & 8 have some of the finest trails systems in Tulsa, but limited sidewalk connections prevent citizens from accessing the trail system. Additionally, the presence of sidewalks promotes children walking to school – if we have better access to schools from neighborhoods in the form of sidewalks, the health of our children improves, dangerous traffic congestion around schools decreases and air quality improves. Overall, sidewalks provide improved safety for youth, families and seniors. $2 million over the course of the next 5 (or 6) years will barely make a dent in the $34 million backlog of sidewalk infrastructure needs that the City of Tulsa has identified. That list of needs continues to grow. The Accessible Transportation Coalition supports the ADA Transition Plan allocation as well as the Bicycle and Pedestrian Master Plan implementation funding and the coalition hopes that City Council, the mayor and their constituents agree with this statement and will increase CIP funding for sidewalks.”

If you are interested in speaking up for sidewalks at an upcoming town hall meeting please contact Joani Dotson at jdotson@tulsa-health.org for more information about the meetings and messaging!

Tulsa City Council will resume public hearings on the Capital Improvement Projects next week. Due to overwhelming participation at the first meeting, the location and time for next week’s meeting have been moved:

6:15 pm Tuesday July 30
Garnett Assembly of God, 2930 S. Garnett Road
Districts 5 and 6

The remaining meetings are:

Aug. 5 – OU-Tulsa Schusterman Center Auditorium, 4502 E. 41st St. (Districts 4 and 9)

Aug. 6 – Rudisill Regional Library – Library Hall, 1520 N. Hartford Ave. (Districts 1 and 3)

Aug. 13 – Carbondale Assembly of God, 2135 W. 51st St. (District 2)

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