Brownsboro Road Diet Finally Under Construction. (Courtesy CART)
Brownsboro Road Diet Finally Under Construction. (Courtesy CART)
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Although a group interested in maintaining the current and dangerous speedway conditions along Brownsboro Road delayed a planned road diet for a year, the project is finally under construction. A four-lane stretch of the road between Drescher Bridge Road and Ewing Avenue is being converted to three lanes—two travel and one turn lane—providing space to install a missing sidewalk along the .4 mile route.

Currently, the street has limited sidewalks and pedestrian facilities, making a dense neighborhood near downtown and housing Louisville’s largest population of blind citizens and the Kentucky School for the Blind unnecessarily dangerous. The project area saw 172 accidents in the past five years, more than in other similar stretched of Brownsboro Road. Construction began in June and will be complete in a couple weeks, around August 16.

After some claimed the road diet would harm their businesses and cause major delays, the city put the project on hold to collect public comment. Benefits of road diets have been well documented and include increased safety for all road users, including pedestrians, cyclists, and motorists, fewer collisions, improved walkability and a boost in the economy pedestrians create for businesses. Those passing in cars are less likely to patronize a business than a pedestrian walking by. Thankfully, Mayor Fischer approved the project a second time on June 1. That didn’t stop one failing business from claiming construction of the road diet put it out of business, a charge Metro Councilwoman Tina Ward-Pugh soundly refuted.

Thanks to Tina Ward-Pugh, Mayor Fischer, the Clifton and Clifton Heights Pedestrian Access Committee, and community members who attended meeting after meeting for helping see the project through and improving Louisville’s street network.

Construction sign hacked by zombies. (Courtesy Tipster)
Construction sign hacked by zombies. (Courtesy Tipster)
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Branden Klayko

Founder and Editor at Broken Sidewalk
Branden founded Broken Sidewalk in 2008 while practicing architecture in Louisville. He continued the site for seven years while living in New York City, returning to Louisville in 2016. Branden is a graduate of the College of Architecture at Washington University in St. Louis, and has covered architecture, design, and urbanism for The Architect's Newspaper, Designers & Books, Inhabitat, and the American Institute of Architects.
Branden Klayko

6 COMMENTS

  1. I live on Haldeman Avenue, which intersects Brownsboro Road at a section where the road diet is occurring. With regard to the restaurant that closed, I can say that business appeared to struggle from day one. Hardly a car in the parking area or a person to be seen inside. It’s pretty convenient that they can now blame the road diet for their business that appeared to never get off the ground to begin with. That site seems to be cursed because a few restaurants have come and gone the past several years.

    The road diet is mostly complete from Drescher Bridge Avenue to the Thornton’s at Lindsey Avenue. I think the only thing left to do in that section is road striping/signage at Drescher where it turns to three lanes. The north sidewalk on the other side of the project is coming along nicely.

    I also have yet to hear of any traffic tie-ups in the construction area, which was changed to three lanes from the very beginning a few weeks ago. I’m sure had they occurred, it would be all over the news, and business owners would be screaming “I told you so.” But, alas, it isn’t happening.

  2. I live in Clifton and I run several nights a week. I’ve learned to avoid Brownsboro Road due to the lack of continuous sidewalks and speeding drivers. Hopefully this will help on both counts.

  3. I have driven this stretch of road many times during construction, at all times of the day. I have not noticed the delays that the mayors of Indian Hills and Windy Hills were predicting out of selfishness. The arrogant letters from them were difficult to imagine.

    As surprising as it seems, I believe that the traffic now moves more quickly because there is not constant lane changing to avoid being behind a left turning vehicle.

    Thank you Ms. Tina Ward-Pugh

  4. I drive through that section from time to time on my way home from work depending on traffic conditions elsewhere and/or errands I feel like taking. As a driver I often loathed driving through it, but almost as soon as construction started and even with the usual hassles of construction in progress I find the road diet vastly improving my impression of the road.

    I’ve recently started to notice restaurants on the road that I never noticed in the anxiety-inducing speedway, and now am actually starting to add them to my mental list of places to eat on the way home from work.

    I also don’t think it is a coincidence that Kroger seems to be reinvesting in that stretch of Brownsboro just as this road diet began. Brownsboro Road is slowly beginning to feel less like just a connector between the Waterson and Downtown when I-71 is busy and more like the part of the city’s fabric it should be.

  5. What about the fatality crash on 8/18/2012 that was a direct result of the new lane changes?

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