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mzweig

Making Fayetteville Pedestrian-Friendly

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I thought it might be interesting to talk about ideas here on how to make Fayetteville more pedestrian-friendly. This is one of the major thrusts of our new master plan. Each year, we add more miles of sidewalks to support making our city more walkable. That said, I don't think we are doing nearly enough. There are still many streets close in to campus, Dickson, and the square that don't have sidewalks on them. Parking lot entrances are way too wide making it dangerous for pedestrians to walk past them. We need more street lighting. We need better maintainance of existing sidewalks as many have huge trees and shrubs growing over them, in some cases in dangerous areas such as College Avenue, forcing pedestrians off the sidewalk and into the street! We need to see more progress here, faster, making Fayetteville more walkable.

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Interesting idea for a topic. I am glad that Fayetteville is putting in new sidewalks but yeah it does seem like it's still going to take forever to get so many of these areas done. I've wondered if they've made areas like College Ave low priorities because they figure not many people would willingly walk along there. I'm also wondering if they're putting more emphasize on more funding for the hiking/bike trails and getting people to try to use those. I can certainly agree with the part about trees or shrubs in the way of them as well. I walk around a lot to take pictures. I've had many instances where I couldn't stay on the sidewalk because vegetation wasn't properly trimmed. Seems a bit silly to have a sidewalk if you're going to allow trees to have branches so low you'd have to be a very little kid to get under it. For a long time I questioned why we didn't have more bike lanes. Especially after visiting cities like Albuquerque. They have bike lanes on big roads that are just a big and heavily traveled as College. But as far as that goes I would have to say I'd rather have more funding put towards the bike/hiking trails. It would be much safer for bicyclists to be on a trail like that than having to stick to a road. Sometimes though I guess you want to maybe stop at several locations along College and need to be on that road. It would be nice to have something for that as well. One thing I'd like is to have fewer entrances/exits on College. I wish someone would buy several lots put in some sort of shopping center and have one entrance/exit. Instead of having so many freestanding buildings each with it's own entrance/exit. Many times just one location have have both an entrance and an exit. Since this has gotten a bit long I want to wait before I get into some other things I'd like to mention. :D

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I personally like the countdown traffic lights. I know there's one intersection on Garland by the UofA that uses this. I'd like to see more of this downtown.

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I personally like the countdown traffic lights. I know there's one intersection on Garland by the UofA that uses this. I'd like to see more of this downtown.

Yeah there's the ones that play the music as well over by the old Washington Regional location.

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I personally like the countdown traffic lights. I know there's one intersection on Garland by the UofA that uses this. I'd like to see more of this downtown.

Ditto. They have these in LR as well and they're very helpful. Replacing all of the lights in downtown Fayetteville and the UA campus area with them is a good idea.

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Yeah there's the ones that play the music as well over by the old Washington Regional location.

Are you serious? I've never heard of traffic lights that play music. Phenominal some of the ideas people come up with. :D

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Are you serious? I've never heard of traffic lights that play music. Phenominal some of the ideas people come up with. :D

What kind of music does it play?

Classic Rock? Elevator Music? Classical Music?

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I'm surprised you guys seem so shocked about this. Maybe it's not very common in a lot of areas, I don't know. I do know Japan has a lot of them. I think maybe you guys are thinking the wrong type of music as well. It just plays a simple little tune. I'm not sure if you get choices in it. I'm pretty sure Japan will have different tunes for theirs. I have no idea about over here.

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I'm surprised you guys seem so shocked about this. Maybe it's not very common in a lot of areas, I don't know. I do know Japan has a lot of them. I think maybe you guys are thinking the wrong type of music as well. It just plays a simple little tune. I'm not sure if you get choices in it. I'm pretty sure Japan will have different tunes for theirs. I have no idea about over here.

So it plays ice cream truck music? :D

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So it plays ice cream truck music? :D

I would prefer something like rural music in Downtown Rogers and Bentonville. Heck even on Halloween or Christmas, the appropriate tunes could be played.

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So it plays ice cream truck music? :D

I wouldn't quite refer to it like that. But it is closer to that than some of the other examples mentioned earlier.

I would prefer something like rural music in Downtown Rogers and Bentonville. Heck even on Halloween or Christmas, the appropriate tunes could be played.

I can't really be for sure but I don't recall ever seeing them playing more than just one tune. When they are set up I imagine you have more than one choice. I suppose you could change it but I doubt most cities want to spend the money to get someone out there to change the music.

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Interesting idea for a topic. I am glad that Fayetteville is putting in new sidewalks but yeah it does seem like it's still going to take forever to get so many of these areas done. I've wondered if they've made areas like College Ave low priorities because they figure not many people would willingly walk along there. I'm also wondering if they're putting more emphasize on more funding for the hiking/bike trails and getting people to try to use those. I can certainly agree with the part about trees or shrubs in the way of them as well. I walk around a lot to take pictures. I've had many instances where I couldn't stay on the sidewalk because vegetation wasn't properly trimmed. Seems a bit silly to have a sidewalk if you're going to allow trees to have branches so low you'd have to be a very little kid to get under it. For a long time I questioned why we didn't have more bike lanes. Especially after visiting cities like Albuquerque. They have bike lanes on big roads that are just a big and heavily traveled as College. But as far as that goes I would have to say I'd rather have more funding put towards the bike/hiking trails. It would be much safer for bicyclists to be on a trail like that than having to stick to a road. Sometimes though I guess you want to maybe stop at several locations along College and need to be on that road. It would be nice to have something for that as well. One thing I'd like is to have fewer entrances/exits on College. I wish someone would buy several lots put in some sort of shopping center and have one entrance/exit. Instead of having so many freestanding buildings each with it's own entrance/exit. Many times just one location have have both an entrance and an exit. Since this has gotten a bit long I want to wait before I get into some other things I'd like to mention. :D

I think there are a lot of things we can do. More sidewalks are good, less entrances and exits onto roads is good, the width of certain intersections is another problem--where I live, Prospect at Park is crazy wide. People parked on the sides of the road, then their lawns over the years, and eventually it was all paved. The result is an intersection at that point that's about 150 feet wide--crazy. More islands help---they give people somewhere to go to get out of the traffic if they get stuck. Bike lanes are great. Bike parking is important, too. Better marked trails with more maps and more promotion of them would be cool. I think a plan to link every neighborhood in Fayetteville with the downtown area via sidewalks and bike paths would be fantastic. Then implement as we can afford to or as anyone makes any improvements, make them pay for that section of the sidewalk/trail. That's the way a lot of cities do this.

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I think there are a lot of things we can do. More sidewalks are good, less entrances and exits onto roads is good, the width of certain intersections is another problem--where I live, Prospect at Park is crazy wide. People parked on the sides of the road, then their lawns over the years, and eventually it was all paved. The result is an intersection at that point that's about 150 feet wide--crazy. More islands help---they give people somewhere to go to get out of the traffic if they get stuck. Bike lanes are great. Bike parking is important, too. Better marked trails with more maps and more promotion of them would be cool. I think a plan to link every neighborhood in Fayetteville with the downtown area via sidewalks and bike paths would be fantastic. Then implement as we can afford to or as anyone makes any improvements, make them pay for that section of the sidewalk/trail. That's the way a lot of cities do this.

Just curious would you prefer more funding towards sidewalks or towards the trail system? I admit I'd have a hard time deciding because both would be nice. One of the things being voted in the upcoming vote will be more money to the trail system. I actually got to talk to the mayor today about it. He was out at the Farmer's Market and Fayetteville Arts Fesitival trying to promote the issues on the upcoming vote. I got a map of the existing trails and trails that are planned for the future. Later today I'll get that uploaded and posted. I do like a lot of your ideas. Putting some medians or islands would make some areas more pedestrian friendly.

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Here's a map of the Fayetteville Trail System I got while talking to the mayor. Hopefully this isn't too small, if so I can try to post a larger version. Or I can take a pic focusing on a particular area. Just ask if anyone is interested. The red are the completed sections. The blue are planned trails. As you can see on the map, there's a lot of blue and not a lot of red.

img4260sssi7.jpg

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Bike lanes are a great idea for pedestrain friendly areas.

How many streets in Fayetteville have bike lanes? There's hardly any, (may'be none) in Benton County.

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Bike lanes are a great idea for pedestrain friendly areas.

How many streets in Fayetteville have bike lanes? There's hardly any, (may'be none) in Benton County.

It's hard for me to say. I know of several but they're sorta just scattered around. I don't think they'll be putting in a lot of bike lanes though. I bet they'll focus more on the trails system.

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Here's a map of the Fayetteville Trail System I got while talking to the mayor. Hopefully this isn't too small, if so I can try to post a larger version. Or I can take a pic focusing on a particular area. Just ask if anyone is interested. The red are the completed sections. The blue are planned trails. As you can see on the map, there's a lot of blue and not a lot of red.

img4260sssi7.jpg

That's a whole lotta blue lines! Is there a projected completion date for maybe 10% of those trails? I'm not being cynical, I'm just a little surprised that Fayetteville is thinking on such a large scale when existing trails are so limited.

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That's a whole lotta blue lines! Is there a projected completion date for maybe 10% of those trails? I'm not being cynical, I'm just a little surprised that Fayetteville is thinking on such a large scale when existing trails are so limited.

Oh yeah there's a lot of work to be done. But at the same time I don't think they plan on all of this being done for years. Probably even more than a decade. There is an upcoming vote that would give more funds to the trail system. I think that would certainly speed things up.

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Just curious would you prefer more funding towards sidewalks or towards the trail system? I admit I'd have a hard time deciding because both would be nice. One of the things being voted in the upcoming vote will be more money to the trail system. I actually got to talk to the mayor today about it. He was out at the Farmer's Market and Fayetteville Arts Fesitival trying to promote the issues on the upcoming vote. I got a map of the existing trails and trails that are planned for the future. Later today I'll get that uploaded and posted. I do like a lot of your ideas. Putting some medians or islands would make some areas more pedestrian friendly.

Thanks for posting that map, Mith. I have not seen that. Very interesting. I want both--I will be glad to pay more taxes to get sidewalks and trails. I think both are critical.

I was at the festival today. Bought some art, too. One painting from a guy named Nathan Beatty, and some silk printed stuff from a woman who made it. Also bought some T-shirts. Fayetteville rocks!

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Thanks for posting that map, Mith. I have not seen that. Very interesting. I want both--I will be glad to pay more taxes to get sidewalks and trails. I think both are critical.

I was at the festival today. Bought some art, too. One painting from a guy named Nathan Beatty, and some silk printed stuff from a woman who made it. Also bought some T-shirts. Fayetteville rocks!

Hey maybe we walked by each other without even knowing it. :lol: I remember that silk printed artwork. I saw some pretty interesting stuff there. After looking in my festival catalog now I remember Nathan Beatty's artwork as well, it certainly stands out. Anyway back on topic I guess we'll see if other people agree with the paying more taxes. We'll be voting on that soon. I did find out that the measure on the trail system mainly focuses on the Scull Creek trail. This would connect the Frisco Trail northward to the Mudd Creek trail. You'd be able to walk or bike from 6th St all the way to the NWA Mall.

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