Columbus man concerned with lack of sidewalks

Local News

A Columbus man says he’s not happy with the city. 

“The problem is when folks try to cross the street, they’re not respected,” says Henry Gillard. 

He says Columbus is not a pedestrian-friendly city. And its because there’s not enough sidewalks.  

“You the city doesn’t want to pave no sidewalks.. We don’t have sidewalks in the places that really need sidewalks,” he says.

Gillard describes it as one thing: “If you’re walking in Columbus, you are potential roadkill, if you walk in the streets. There are no sidewalks, but people walk those routes every day and every night.  And that’s not right, that’s not the way it should be,” he said.

Gillard says he doesn’t care what it takes. “Everything cost a lot of money..” he replied.

Farhad Alifarhani, the assistant director of engineering agrees with him.

“Of course we do have many miles of sidewalks within the city limit but of course no everywhere, We would rather have it every but because of the budget..” 

But Alifarhani says the city does what it can to get folks what they want 

“Citizens can call 311 and request where they need sidewalks. We put them all into a list and then we investigate. The priority is the sidewalks within half a mile from the elementary schools and connectivity to existing sidewalks and the focal points of the city – the shopping centers or the parks and anything else. In that regard,“ Alifarhani says. 

He addressed Gillard’s concerns about the lack of sidewalks in certain place and neighborhoods.  

“The ordinance basically requires the private development that goes along the streets with curb and gutter. Theyre required to put sidewalks unless they go past for variance. The residential development, at the time of the development, the engineer and the developer are required to place sidewalk on at least one side of the street and also associated curb ramps and everything is necessary.” 

He says according to an ordinance introduced in 2005. Some neighborhoods won’t get sidewalks.  

“Those subdivision that are built after 2005, did comply with it, the existing subdivision cannot get that ordinance imposed on them. The developer has already developed and designed and gone and houses were sold,” he continued.  

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.