CORBIN — Several community leaders are working to see more sidewalks and better lighting in some much needed areas around Corbin.
Jessica Bray, Regional Transportation Planner with the Cumberland Valley Area Development District, said Corbin Mayor Suzie Razmus along with elected officials before her have been passionate about the need for sidewalks in Corbin.
“This lack of sidewalk infrastructure on Master Street has been a city concern and focus for many years,” said Razmus. “It is a safety hazard for our citizens, many of whom are disabled and elderly, who walk in the street and uneven grassy areas from town to shop and back home.
Taking into consideration that along or just off Master Street are several senior housing facilities that house individuals with canes or motorized wheelchairs, sidewalks would be greatly beneficial. Razmus said the foot traffic only seems to be increasing.
Both Bray and Razmus have been collecting photos of pedestrians using the side of the roadway in an effort to make their case.
Bray, who has been working hard to gather statistics, found that on Master Street alone in the last 10 years there was five injury accidents and one death. As well as sidewalks, Bray suggests proper lighting for that area as well. In several of those accidents, dark lighting was reported.
Razmus said the city will continue to partner with Bray and other partners at CVADD to bring attention to their concerns at the state and federal level. In the meantime both Razmus and Bray offer suggestions and encourage community members to get involved.
“Our community can help by writing letters of concern to my attention at Mayor's office, City Hall, 805 S. Main Street, Corbin, KY 40701,” said Razmus. “ They can also submit photos via instant message to me personally on my Facebook page or email me at email@example.com.”
In case the state doesn't prioritize Master Street for funding, Bray said she is writing a letter of support for funding to legislators on behalf of the CVADD. Bray suggests community members also write letters to legislatures as well.
"I think you need to be active and let our legislators know we need money," Bray added.
While it is hard to pinpoint when exactly funds might come in for the infrastructure, officials say they will continue to advocate to the very best of their ability. Bray added that it would be during this session but noted there is a new governor and new transportation secretary. Bray said the highway plan should come out the end on January.
As far as other critical sidewalk needs are concerned, Razmus would love to see the sidewalks on Gordon Street to continue from where it ends at the top of Gordon to the Circle K store. Razmus added that new sidewalks are very expensive, and they will continue to look for funding outside of the city budget.