Making neighborhoods downtown safer to walk around

Posted at: 06/15/2014 5:24 PM
Updated at: 06/15/2014 5:26 PM
By: Erica Zucco, KOB Eyewitness News 4

The city says it's time to make neighborhoods downtown safer to walk around.

This downtown street safety project was started and abandoned two years ago. Now, city councilor Isaac Benton’s picked it back up and he says it's going to get finished.

 It was easy to find people speeding where they shouldn't be in this downtown neighborhood near 3rd and Mountain.

Folks at Vinny's Barbershop on Mountain said drivers downtown don't seem to care about homes, speed limit signs or slowing down for pedestrians.

“Too many people speeding around the areas, people running stop signs, stuff like that. We need a lot more speed bumps, cops patrolling would be nice,” said one resident.

The city knows speeding and safety is a problem here. A recent study it sponsored showed Mountain and 3rd is the most dangerous spot in the area. It had double the crash rate of the average city intersection. The study also showed too few benches and broken sidewalks.

Over the next few months, the city will finalize plans to add 4-way stops and pedestrian crossings, fix sidewalks that aren't safe for bikes or wheelchairs and study how to make Lomas safer.

Residents say that sounds like a start, but they'd like to see more enforcement too.

“In neighborhoods like this, there has to be more of a presence," said one resident. "I remember when we were growing up you knew every cop that went through your neighborhood. And I think if they bring that back, people will slow down, people will make it more of a walkable neighborhood.”

You can view the full plan draft at under 4-links. You can also give your input, suggestions and comments until June 20.