Sidewalks could soon surface on busy Madisonville road - 14 News, WFIE, Evansville, Henderson, Owensboro

Sidewalks could soon surface on busy Madisonville road

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Safe Routes to School is a national program designed to encourage kids to walk or bike to school in a safe environment. Safe Routes to School is a national program designed to encourage kids to walk or bike to school in a safe environment.
MADISONVILLE, KY (WFIE) -

Sidewalks could soon be added to a busy roadway in Madisonville. It's one of several projects considered on the chamber of commerce legislative priorities list for next year. 

This is all part of a Safe Routes to School Program and talks are to bring sidewalks to Brown Road, something residents are happy to hear about.

"Brown Road is a very busy road, all times of the day," Victory Church Junior High Pastor, Kevin Fox said. 

As a youth pastor at a church on Brown Road, Fox says he always sees kids walking to and from the nearby James Madison Middle School and it isn't always safe.

"A lot of the kids have to walk through people's backyards, cut across fields. It's kind of dangerous for them to walk down Brown Road," Fox said.

Safe Routes to School is a national program designed to encourage kids to walk or bike to school in a safe environment. Something officials say current generations are seeing a decrease of.

"30 years ago, about half of the students that were either elementary or middle school age used to walk or bike to school. Now that's dropped down to about 13 percent," Daron Jordan said. 

Madisonville Community Development Director Daron Jordan says the city received funding for a similar project a few years ago on Grapevine Road and he says there was a big increase in students walking to school.

"It also extended the sidewalk from not only the school, but it tied in with a portion of the community all the way over to our city park," Jordan said.

Funding to put sidewalks along Brown Road would cost just under $250,000. Fox says sidewalks would also benefit other community members who often have to resort to places like the Victory Church parking lot to get some exercise.

"We have 20 or 30 people that just walk their dogs, ride their bikes because it's too dangerous to them to ride up and down the road," Fox said.

Each year the chamber of commerce puts together it's top ten list of projects seen as a priority for the county. Those that make it towards the top may receive legislative funding.   

The chamber should have the final list of projects set within a month, and even if this is towards the top, it's not a guarantee it will be completed. But, it could speed up the whole process.

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