Infrastructure and Leadership
Infrastructure planning and development is directly linked to…the economic well being of our city
Infrastructure encompasses roads, sidewalks, crosswalks, water & sewer facilities, mass transportation, airports and utilities. Infrastructure planning and development is directly linked to the processes of strategic and financial planning and, most importantly, the economic well being of our city. In addition, the capability to be proactive and see the need of infrastructure years in advance is critical and CAN be accomplished. Critical factors are having good leadership in place that has the imagination and understanding to transform data on population and economic growth into plans of action with timelines and budgets to fulfill infrastructure needs.
Starting in 2011, we had a chance to begin initial phases of development on a new road system that would address a major transportation need for Clarksville within the next 10 to 20 years. Two traffic-engineering studies, each conducted under two previous city administrations, stated the necessity of this new road, termed the East-West Corridor. Data shows that even with the past widening of the 101st Parkway and Tiny Town Road, the population growth and associated vehicular increases would overwhelm both of the highways by the 2025-2030 timeframe. Already it is common to see long lines of traffic, particularly during morning and evening commutes and these roads were widened and improved just a few years ago. So, the East-West Corridor would be essential to accommodate a growing population and directly impact the safety of the citizens of Clarksville while on our roadways.
Instead of building upon the groundwork laid by the two traffic engineering studies, this essential project was deemed as too big for Clarksville to do and it would require actions/decisions that could result in lawsuits against the city.
…make us more self-reliant in developing our future and cease being a ward of the state.
If Clarksville wants responsive action to the issues and problems associated with the growth of our community, then city leadership will have to step forward and make the tough decisions. We need to make planning and financial decisions that make us more self-reliant in developing our future and cease being a ward of the state. We have many issues associated with the lack of proper sidewalks, signaled crosswalks, traffic signals, road widening and storm water runoff … just to name a few. Many of these issues are associated with state property or roads. While we should always endeavor to be selected for grants and any other funding opportunities available at the state and federal level, we cannot let it dictate when and how we will address the infrastructure needs of our city. If we encourage the growth of our city, then we should take responsibility to address the needs of that growth.
…lack of proper sidewalks, signaled crosswalks, traffic signals, road widening and storm water runoff…
In my administration the city will again take the lead in addressing the transportation necessity of the East – West Corridor. I will develop a program to address the continuous flooding issues that some of our citizens face. I will seek approval and/or funding from federal, state and local resources to finally fix poorly maintained or missing sidewalks, needed signaled crosswalks and develop a full-fledged storm water runoff program.
Also, under a Summers’ administration I will work very closely with our state representatives to gain support for completing the State Route 374 project and an additional interstate interchange.
A city must take the lead in addressing its own infrastructure needs. The excuse that it is someone else’s problem is not an answer.