Metro Council approves sidewalk bill; New rules start in July - WSMV News 4

Metro Council approves sidewalk bill; New rules go into effect in July

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In some of Nashville's fastest-growing neighborhoods, it can be a struggle to find a safe place to walk.

On Tuesday night, city leaders took a major step toward fixing that problem.

Advocates of the sidewalk bill call it a loophole they've been trying to close for a long time.

On Tuesday night, Metro Council voted to approve the bill, which requires home developers in the urban core to either build sidewalks or pay into the city's sidewalk fund.

Until now, Davidson County builders of single-family homes and duplexes in neighborhoods have not had to construct sidewalks fronting their projects unless they're in subdivisions. This is why many streets around Nashville have no buffer between you and the road.

Councilmember Angie Henderson was the bill's main sponsor.

"It's not our intent to require it for single and two-family development everywhere, but within a very strategic and intentional framework," Henderson said.

Starting in July, developers of one- and two-family homes will be required to build sidewalks on the same side of a block where there's already a home with a sidewalk piece. If there isn't one, they'll pay into the city's sidewalk fund.

"At current funding levels of $30 million, it would still take the city 20 years to build those sidewalks," Henderson said.

Metro Council approved the sidewalk bill by voice vote. Once Mayor Megan Barry signs it, the new rules go into effect July 1.

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