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Walkers and cyclists have complained for years about Nashville builders blocking paths. Now the city is about to require better access.

Walkers and cyclists have complained for years about Nashville builders blocking paths. Now the city is about to require better access.

Mayor John Cooper announced new safety regulations for right-of-ways near construction during a press conference in Nashville on Aug. 19, 2022. Share: In front of…

Saturday, Aug 20

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Mayor John Cooper announced new safety regulations for right-of-ways near construction during a press conference in Nashville on Aug. 19, 2022. Share:

In front of Vanderbilt University, along the bustling West End Avenue, metal bars enclosed a sidewalk with planks of wood on top Friday morning.

It’s a standard feature in some construction projects, but temporary walkways are often absent in projects around town — enough that Nashvillians have routinely used the hashtag #DontBlockMySidewalk.

The city intends to shift this dynamic soon, however, with new safety requirements for developers.

Under current regulations, developers obtain a 30-day permit to obstruct public walkways or bikeways. These permits are then renewed indefinitely.

That will no longer be allowed. The city will now require projects that will block right-of-ways for more than seven days to construct a temporary walkway or bikeway.

“It’s really about no longer having the right-of-way encroached,” said Diana Alarcon, the director of the Nashville Department of Transportation.Nashville has issued 31,000 permits this year to developers seeking to block right-of-ways. The city will work with current permit holders to get them into compliance during permit renewal processes.The city recommends that people who witness right-of-way obstruction report it through hubNashville , which currently gets two complaints per day, on average, regarding sidewalk issues.

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