Dunbar Middle School SRTS Infrastructure Request
Pedestrian and bicycle facilities around some important routes to Dunbar Middle School are of low quality (Figs. 1-7). Walking or biking to school can have health and learning benefits and can also be the only option to get back and forth between school and home for some elementary school students living within one mile of their school or middle or high school students who live within two miles of their school.
The City of Little Rock will soon hire local and national planning experts to consider bicycle and pedestrian connectivity on our city streets and compile their findings in a new Master Plan. This Plan will be informed by the need for safe routes to schools. Timely implementation of the Plan will require financial support in the 2019-2021 Sales Tax and Bond funding cycle. It is therefore important to create Infrastructure Requests specific enough to be considered for funding in this cycle but flexible enough to be influenced by the expertise within the Plan and community consensus created by the Plan.
Figure 1 shows that most of the streets around Dunbar have sidewalks. This is something also stated by the Wright Avenue Neighborhood Action Plan (2016), however the action plan states that "many are in disrepair" (pg. 8).
To learn how you can help improve routes to Dunbar Middle School, continue reading. To learn how you can help improve routes to other LRPS Middle Schools, click here. To learn how to advocate for other bicycle and pedestrian improvements, click here.
Figure 1. Dunbar Middle School is in the center of the figure surrounded by a sea green two-mile circle, a yellow one-mile circle, and a salmon half-mile circle. Brown lines are existing sidewalks and visible green lines are streets without existing sidewalks. The bright blue line is the border of the Dunbar two-mile circle. No bus service for Dunbar is provided within the bright blue line surrounding the two-mile circle.
Figure 2. Asher Ave. and Wright Ave. create an important pedestrian corridor to Dunbar Middle School. Map by Ava Horton.
Figure 3. A continuous sidewalk corridor could help students get from home to Dunbar Middle School. Figure by Ava Horton.
Figure 4. Sidewalk connections along Asher Ave. are needed to connect students to Dunbar Middle School. Figure by Ava Horton.
Figure 5. Creating a sidewalk on the north side of Asher Ave. between S. Maple St. and S. Martin St. could be part of creating a pedestrian corridor to Dunbar Middle School along Asher Ave.
Figure 6. Creating a sidewalk on the north side of Asher Ave. between World of Outreach Christian Center and the driveways of the Calvary Cemetery could be part of creating a pedestrian corridor to Dunbar Middle School along Asher Ave.
Figure 7. Creating a sidewalk on the north side of Asher Ave. between Woodrow and existing Asher sidewalks could be part of creating a pedestrian corridor to Dunbar Middle School along Asher Ave.
If this is a project you would like to see completed, feel free to use any of the language below to complete an infrastructure request form and submit it to Public Works no later than September 30th (postal mail and email addresses can be found on the form):
1) Briefly describe the proposed project. Please include the boundaries of the project.
Dunbar SRTS: Pedestrian and bicycle facilities around important routes to Horace Mann Middle School are absent or of low quality. I would like any new Master Plan including pedestrian and bike modalities to give special consideration to safe routes for schools, prioritizing projects within two miles of middle and high schools and one mile of elementary schools. Priority should be given to inexpensive projects that create connectivity and ADA compliance and that are in low income communities. The new Master Plan and comment from Dunbar students, parents, and school officials should be used to identify the most critical improvements necessary for Dunbar. Particular attention should be paid to Wright and Asher Avenues. If a more specificity is required, I would like the City of Little Rock to construct a sidewalk on the north side of Asher for the 1130 ft. between S. Maple and S. Martin Streets, the 773 ft. between the World of Outreach Christian Center and the driveways of the Calvary Cemetery, and the 526 ft. between Woodrow and existing Asher sidewalks.
2) Indicate if this is a new project or a continuation of an existing project.
This project will improve sidewalks and create new sidewalks necessary to link existing sidewalks to create continuous, low-stress pedestrian corridors.