Infrastructure for a Growing City
“The Nashville Way” is all about not becoming the next Atlanta or L.A. when it comes to traffic, sprawl and the loss of our Southern small-town feel. The past decades of growth have been very good for Nashville. Our city is more prosperous and more interesting than ever. But rapid growth comes with a cost, and we are at risk of becoming victims of our own success. Nashville’s basic services—roads, sidewalks, and water and sewer lines—must be shored up so that growth doesn’t hurt our quality of life.
Let’s focus on:
Major progress in transportation is one of David’s most urgent priorities. Traffic jams and longer waits are by-products of growth that outpaced planning. The Nashville Way is to include neighborhoods and communities in a broad conversation about our future. It’s about pursuing private-sector opportunities to develop regional commuter transit without overburdening ourselves with debt. It’s about a plan that leverages technology, along with traditional sidewalks and buses, to minimize traffic and maximize walkability and pedestrian safety. The key is to avoid one-size-fits-all thinking and to tailor transit solutions to the communities they serve.
Water & Sewer Lines
If a major water line breaks, like it did recently in Antioch, the world shuts down for the people affected. Daycares close. Office buildings can’t open their doors, either. We cannot be a world-class city without state-of-the-art infrastructure. It is not only unwise, it’s downright dangerous to keep building and growing without taking care of the basics. In addition, we’re going to have to deal with EPA directives about waste spilling into the Cumberland River during heavy rains. It’s time to tackle the problem.
We’ve focused a lot on downtown over the past few years, and we’ve become a destination for tourists from all over the world. Now’s the time to invest in neighborhoods outside the city center, where the majority of Nashvillians live day in and day out. This means sidewalks to connect people to schools, jobs and houses of worship, and it means smooth, safe streets. The Nashville Way isn’t just a quality of life, it’s a way of living that is generous, kind, inclusive, civil and creative. It’s a way of living projected by people who love where they live, feel safe in their neighborhoods and valued by their community. To protect the Nashville Way, we must extend the bounty of our city to all its citizens.