NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — A busy stretch of Gallatin Pike in East Nashville is soon going to get a new traffic light.
Metro’s Traffic and Parking Commission on Monday approved the project.
Any time of the day, you’ll find pedestrian after pedestrian trying to dodge cars to cross the section of Gallatin Pike near Stratford Avenue.
“Sometimes it’s scary,” said Lendy Myatt. “You have to be very cautious.”
“It’s real rough,” said Howard Thornton.
The nearest crosswalks are spread seven-tenths of a mile apart – that’s about a 12 minute walk from Hart Lane to Ardee Avenue.
The busy stretch lies in Metro Councilwoman Emily Benedict’s district seven and part of district eight.
“My heart just stops,” said Benedict. “I fear. I fear for their lives.”
Last December, a woman was critically injured trying to cross.
In July, a man trying to cross the street was hit and killed.
“It’s become one of those impossible crossings situations, so this is really going to make a difference,” said Benedict.
That difference — a new traffic light coming to the corridor.
“Traffic study, traffic engineers will get engaged and figure out what the layout for the light should look like, timing,” said Benedict.
Benedict is hoping for not only a new traffic light to slow down cars, but also a marked crosswalk.
“In order for pedestrians to be safe, we really have to give them the opportunity to be successful in crossing our streets,” she said.
The intersection also serves as a stop for the 56 WeGo line, which has the highest ridership in the city.
“If we want to continue to grow that and be a beacon for what transit ridership can look like, I want to do all that I can to make sure that people in district seven and across the street in district 8, that they had the opportunity to get safely to the bus stop and use that bus,” said Benedict.
“It’ll make me feel better with the traffic light – there’s so much busy traffic right through this area right here,” said Myatt.
Benedict said the traffic lights could cost as much as $250,000.
The project is expected to take anywhere from six months to a year to complete.