Monday September 22, 2003
For Immediate Release
For Information Contact:
Jennifer F. Brislin
Patrick H. Neely
The Shelbyville Road Beautification and Safety Project Taskforce held its second public meeting tonight and unveiled a draft plan for the corridor.
The taskforce is working on ways to improve the safety and appearance of the road between Blankenbaker Parkway and the Gene Snyder. Problems include lack of landscaping, sidewalks and curbs in some areas as well as open drainage ditches.
“Residents and small business owners in the area have voiced concern about that stretch of Shelbyville Road,” said Hal Heiner, District 19 councilman and sponsor of the project. “They asked for help in improving the safety and looks, and this plan would go a long way to achieving those goals. As the retail town center for Anchorage, Douglass Hills, Middletown, Lake Forest and the surrounding areas, these improvements are a concern to much of the district.”
The plan recommends several steps to improve the safety and looks of Shelbyville Road from Blankenbaker Parkway to the Gene Snyder, including improving drainage; consolidating places where traffic can enter and exit parking lots; increasing the number of pedestrian crossings; placing TARC shelters at heavily used locations, such as Eastern High School, and designating places to stand and sit at other bus stops; installing a continuous sidewalk on both sides of the road from Blankenbaker to the Gene Snyder interchange; eliminating variable shoulder widths while keeping the same number of lanes, which will increase green space in many areas; creating extra-wide lanes that allow room for bikes to share the roadway; installing curbs and gutters, which are lacking in many areas; planting trees in the median as well as along both sides of the street; and creating an urban park along Beargrass Creek.
The task force will vote on the plan and then it will go to the Metro Government Planning Commission for approval as a small area plan.
After those approvals, a stretch of roadway will become the first pilot project. It will take about $300,000 to complete one area of the corridor. There is money available to complete the final designs and start on the pilot project.
“The goal is to have the design plans complete before the end of the fiscal year in hopes that funding might be incorporated into the Metro Government budget and some of the suburban cities’ budgets,” Heiner said.
In February, Heiner formed a taskforce to begin the Shelbyville Road Beautification and Safety Project. The project has received $50,000 in funding, including $12,500 from Heiner’s District 19 neighborhood development funds, the cities of Middletown, Anchorage and Douglass Hills, as well as the residents’ associations in Lake Forest, Copperfield and Beckley Woods.
In addition, Metro Government has designated $30,000 for the design of a pilot project and provided in-kind services for project management and mapping.
“This project never would have occurred without merger,” Heiner said. “It is an excellent example of how Metro Government, suburban governments, neighborhood associations and the state are working together to improve the quality of life in our community.”
The taskforce members are: · Hal Heiner, District 19 councilman, Louisville Metro Council; Diane Cook, resident, Anchorage; Warren Walker, mayor, Douglass Hills; Byron Chapman, mayor, Middletown; Ron Snellen, commissioner, Middletown; Robert Robinson, mayor, Woodland Hills; Gary Edelen, president, Beckley Woods Homeowners Association; Ron Bekebrede, treasurer, Copperfield Homeowners Association; Dick Richard, member, Louisville Metro Planning Commissioner; Sushil Gupta, member Lake Forest Advisory Council; Judy Francis, president and CEO, Middletown Chamber of Commerce; Mary Littrell, member, Middletown Chamber of Commerce, and vice president of the Middletown branch of Bank One; John Hassmann, chair-elect, Middletown Chamber of Commerce, and owner of Taste of Kentucky; Victoria Coombs, Floyd Fork area field representative for MSD; C. W. Seymour, a transportation engineer, State Department of Transportation; Charles Cash, director, Louisville Metro Planning and Design; Mark Adams, county engineer, Louisville Metro Public Works; and John Fischer, assistant director, Louisville Metro Development Authority.
Hal Heiner (R) 19