Waco group works at making city more walker friendly

Posted at 11:04 PM, Sep 09, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-10 00:07:34-04

In the past year, Waco has been making strides at becoming more pedestrian friendly.

City of Waco spokesman, Larry Holze, acknowledged that Waco has a lot of growth in making the city more walkable.

Several parts of the city don’t have crosswalks or sidewalks, making it difficult to navigate the city on foot. Holze said sidewalks, once were not required. With recent development in the area, they are required.

At the end of August-City Council unanimously approved the plan to make the city more walker-friendly through the year 2040.

Walkers like Ashley Thornton, are not waiting until then to hit the streets.  Thornton started walking anywhere she could in January.  Monday through Friday she makes her three-mile commute on foot.

Thornton has enjoyed the experience of walking, it allows her to better see the city.

"It's surprising even though I don't think we have a huge culture of walking how many people I run into on the streets and have a nice little visit with when I'm walking around,” Thornton said.

After reading Jeff Peck’s Walkable City, Thornton started a group to discuss the book. The group committed to meeting 10 times, once to discuss each chapter.

In their meetings, they have talked about the book, their routes and some ideas they have for the city. While the group is in the early stages- they are hoping to learn more about what goes into creating a walkable city. In meetings, they have invited city planners as well as tried to brush up on some of the concepts.

"We want to educate ourselves about what it takes to make the city more walkable. The general perception is to throw some more sidewalks and presto changeo it will be more walkable and it's a lot more complicated than that.” Thornton said.

While they wait for inevitable changes,it doesn’t deter them from walking.

“Every walk has something nice about it and also something that could be better too,” Thornton said. 

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