Public comment sought on transportation issues

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By Robin Bass

The use of a reliable automobile is something many take for granted. Whether it is a visit to the grocery or the doctor's office, most Spencer Countians are accustomed to being able to drive themselves virtually anywhere they need, or want, to go. Unfortunately, this luxury is not available to everyone – particularly those with disabilities, older adults and individuals with limited income.

Kentuckiana Regional Planning and Development Agency (KIPDA) has responded to the transportation concerns of these groups by proposing a Coordinated Human Services Transportation Plan. In their draft, KIPDA had several suggestions when it comes to providing adequate transportation opportunities in Spencer and the five other counties serviced by the organization. Recommendations included:

• proper land use and regulation,

• adequate infrastructure (sidewalks), and

• providing transportation services (public and private).

KIPDA stated that "clustered, mixedeeuse development that would allow people to live closer to services and employment opportunities would reduce expenses and the need for transportation in the future." Their recommendation was that Spencer County Planning and Zoning Commissions, City of Taylorsville and Spencer County Fiscal Court review the Comprehensive Plan and identify barriers to mixedeeuse development. KIPDA also suggested that sidewalks should be required of any new or renovated development in the county.

For existing roadways, KIPDA identified a list of local streets that could be improved with sidewalks and bikeways.

• Industrial Road from KY 55 to west of the Nutrition Center

• Jefferson Street from KY 44 to Reasor Avenue

• KY 44 from Oak Tree Way to KY 55

• KY 55 from Industrial Road to KY 44

• Main Cross Street from Reasor Avenue to KY 44

• Reasor Avenue from Main Cross Street to KY 55

The last two on the list have recently had sidewalks installed, but no bikeways.

As for providing public transportation opportunities, KIPDA suggested local leaders heavily promoting the TicketeetoeeRide Program and make residents aware of established vanpools and carpools. Another recommendation was to "expand public transit in the sixeecounty region to include an internal circulator route in each county and an intereecounty system that would address travel between counties primarily for employment and specialized health care services, such as dialysis."

The complete proposal is available on the KIPDA website www.kipda.org/Transportation/Drafts.aspx for review. Copies can also be found at the library and the judge executive's office.

KIPDA will be holding a public meeting Tuesday, October 6, from 5 p.m. until 7 p.m. at the Spencer County Fiscal Court Building, located at 12 W. Main Street in Taylorsville. Residents are encouraged to attend and offer input.