John Cooper - April 2021

Nashville Mayor John Cooper delivers the State of Metro address on Thursday, April 29, 2021.

NASHVILLE (WSMV) – The Nashville Department of Transportation and Multimodal Infrastructure (NDOT) and Mayor John Cooper released the first draft of the city’s Vision Zero Action Plan Wednesday. 

The plan will be the guiding framework to make Nashville’s streets safer for pedestrians, bicyclists, and motorists. 

The draft of the plan is being released now so that the department can collect feedback from community members over the next six weeks in preparation for the release of a final plan in February 2022.

Included in the draft plan is a High Injury Network of Nashville’s most dangerous roads and intersections, as well as a set of specific recommendations for near-term implementation.

Since 2014, 468 people have been killed in traffic crashes in Nashville, with the number of pedestrians being killed increasing in recent years. In January of 2020, Cooper announced Nashville’s commitment to prioritizing roadway safety and becoming a Vision Zero City.

“A great city is a walkable city and a bike-friendly city,” Cooper said in a statement. “That means – in a city that works for everyone – we must shape our transportation strategies and infrastructure around the safety and well-being of every person.”

The plan was developed by NDOT staff along with stakeholders and the Vision Zero Task Force. Community input was also taken into consideration. 

Throughout plan development, five themes emerged as guiding principles:

  • Create Safe Streets for Everyone
  • Promote a Culture of Safety
  • Increase Collaboration & Transparency
  • Improve Data Quality
  • Prioritize Equity

“The Vision Zero Action Plan shows that there are deep inequities in the design of our streets," said Lindsey Ganson, Director of Advocacy and Communications for Walk Bike Nashville. "Some neighborhoods bear an unequal share of traffic deaths and injuries."

The Vision Zero Action Draft Plan includes a High Injury Network that detects the most dangerous roadways and intersections for all roadway users. 

Key data findings include:

  • 2% of Nashville streets account for 60% of fatal and serious injuries for people walking
  • 6% of streets account for nearly 60% of all fatal and serious injuries for all modes (walking, biking, driving). 
  • 90% of high injury intersections occur in areas defined as “highly vulnerable” – places with more underserved Nashvillians, such as those living in poverty or who do not own vehicles. 
  • A person walking near a bus stop in a highly vulnerable area is eight times more likely to be killed or severely injured.  

The plan also has 11 key recommendations for short-term implementation related to analyzing fatal crashes for preventative measures, developing policies and education campaigns, identifying specific safety projects, designing safer infrastructure, and more.

“This plan is essential in helping us understand specifically where our roadway safety challenges are and provides us with the necessary guidance on how we can proactively quickly begin addressing many of them,” said NDOT Chief Engineer Brad Freeze.

The draft plan will be open for community feedback via email until early February. Also, a virtual public meeting is scheduled for late January. 

Additional details will be provided later. 

Community members are encouraged to review the plan and submit feedback by emailing

For more information on Vision Zero, visit

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