Recently via twitter, some residents alerted me about a new sidewalk closure that had to be seen to be believed. Sidewalk closures for construction are common around Indy, and I have yet to see accommodations made for pedestrians via temporary barriers placed on the street. Even the City County Building was guilty of this during the Lugar Plaza construction, and they should be the most aware of public needs of anyone. There’s usually a sign alerting people to cross the street before the closure, but to me, that’s not good enough. We can do better than that. And here’s an example why:
Walk north on Delaware towards Pulliam Square, and there’s the familiar sidewalk closure, this time for a project in the former parking lot of the Regions Bank tower. As of Wednesday, there was no sign alerting people to cross Delaware. Here it is, closer to the fence. I ran down the street when it was clear. Meanwhile, there were still 3 full lanes of one-way auto traffic on the street:
Then I walked to New York Street, to the Pulliam Street corner. This north side of this corner is already finished, but the last phase towards Pennsylvania Street is still under construction. So, another sidewalk blocking fence:
This means that there are now 2 blocked sidewalks on the same street. Again, there 3 blocks worth of one-way auto traffic. A few pedestrians can be seen here walking in the auto lane next to the southern closure. There’s literally no other option:
I have created a crude outline of the areas that are blocked off:
Indy has long touted itself as a walkable city. But this issue keeps popping up, and until some fundamental changes are made at the City Council level, it will continue. I’d support a move to require developers to provide a pedestrian space within the Regional Center.