City leaders making Cool Springs more pedestrian friendly

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There has been a lot of growth in the Franklin-Cool Springs area in the past ten years, and you’ll see even more in the future.

With plans in place for a “mini Gulch” on the 50-acre property that currently houses the Carothers Building, you can expect more traffic in that area.

City leaders hope to make Cool Springs more pedestrian-friendly.

“I think we’re long overdue for a pedestrian-friendly Cool Springs,” said Bev Burger, Franklin Alderman, Ward 1. “I’ve been talking with the Mayor and some of the transit people, and we really do need to have some kind of summit where we come together and bring ideas about making Cool Springs more pedestrian-friendly. We have to get people to cross the streets because we have a lot of cars on our streets.”

Right now, Burger is working on a solution to put in a pedestrian crossway on McEwen Drive. She told News 2’s Cherish Lombard that she would like to bring a “Cool Springs circulator” to the area to help cut down on traffic.

“We would love to, in the next few years, develop a system called the ‘Cool Springs Circulator,’ where we would have a number of smaller buses that would go around the Cool Springs area,” Burger explained. “[Buses would] go in and out of the office parks and the developments, the restaurants, the apartments and take people to where they need to go during the day in the Cool Springs area.”

Again, that plan is just in the discussion at this point. 

City leaders are also studying transit on college campuses to see if plans there can be adapted in Cool Springs. 

“We are starting to plan, starting to meet more regularly,” Alderman Burger said. “There is a number of things that can be done to address those needs. Once you go into an office park or go into a building or restaurant, once you pick up people, you’ve got to be able to get them on the road and get them to where they’re going in a quicker pace versus them getting in a car and sitting in the traffic.”

Right now, city leaders are trying to deal with traffic woes as best they can.

“I’ve got a mixed opinion from some of my people in my ward,” Burger said. “A lot of them go, ‘Whoa, Whoa, we’re growing too fast. We’re growing too much.’ Yes, we are growing, and we’re going pretty fast, but we do have a good land-use plan. We do have good planning in our city. We are planning — we are planning for smart growth, but you just can’t run out and build a road, and you can’t run out and build these things if development doesn’t happen.”

Alderman Burger says the city is getting ready to put about another $170-million into road systems in the next eight-to-ten years. 

She says No. 1 priority right now in her ward is McEwen, Phase 4. Currently, they’re working on right-of-ways.

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