CLARKSVILLE, IN (January 26, 2022) – One of the top priorities for the Town of Clarksville is to continuously improve the Town’s infrastructure for the benefit of our residents. As we work to improve our Town, we must also strive to adhere to the latest trends in community development.
One of those trends that we are seeing across the globe is creating more connected communities through multimodal transportation planning. So, what does that mean? Multimodal transportation includes walking, biking, public transportation such as buses, and cars. According to the World Resources Institute, multi-modal transportation can provide a suite of community health and livability benefits, including better air quality and reduced noise pollution, some of the largest environmental causes of health issues. Fewer cars on the road and improved road design also means fewer crashes for those inside and outside of vehicles. Active modes of transportation can improve physical and mental health by helping more Americans exercise.
With the move to more livable and walkable communities, cities and towns like Clarksville can no longer focus simply on vehicular traffic. This is why Town leaders are working for the future with the creation of a new Connect Clarksville Thoroughfare Plan. Using funding from the Kentuckiana Regional Planning & Development Agency (KIPDA), the Town issued a request for proposals for engineering firms interested in assisting in this process.
That request for proposals included the following statement: “The Town seeks a thoroughfare plan which will be a progressive, town-wide, multimodal plan. The thoroughfare plan will be used to carefully plan and develop an adequate thoroughfare system to serve both present and future mobility and access needs of the public. The thoroughfare plan will be a master guide for the development of transportation systems and will be utilized in the process of transportation planning, in the evaluation of projects, and in the formulation of transportation plans.”
After reviewing several submissions, the Town selected engineering firm Clark Dietz to serve as project managers for creating the new plan. The team also includes representatives from TSW Design Group and OHM Advisors. Project leaders have already been hard at work to formulate a timeline for developing that new thoroughfare plan.
“By developing a new Thoroughfare Plan, the Town [of Clarksville] is painting the picture of how its transportation system should function in the future and creating a roadmap for getting there,” said Ryan Hughes, Project Engineer with Clark Dietz. “A robust thoroughfare plan will help the Town expand its multimodal transportation infrastructure, influence where and how development occurs, and secure outside funding for transportation projects. It will be an important tool as the Town continues to invest in the quality of life of its residents, visitors, and businesses.”
The work began with the team researching the makeup of Clarksville’s transportation system as well as the current Town codes for new and existing roads. The team will also be reviewing local traffic data, crash data, and the current functional classifications of roads. Next, the team will work with residents and other stakeholders to determine the needs of the community. Stakeholders include leaders from local school systems, transportation officials from TARC, and local developers of single-family homes and mixed-use developments.
One of the most important parts of the process will come in the form of a short survey that will be mailed to every household in the Town of Clarksville. The survey will be a chance for all residents to provide input on how the Town can improve our current connectivity with changes to roads, sidewalks, and trails. The survey will also be available online for those who find it more convenient than filling out a paper survey. Both the online and paper surveys will be sent out in mid-February. A public meeting will then be held in April to share the findings of the survey and traffic studies.
“Often times residents say they want to have more input on the future of our Town,” said Ken Conklin, Communications Director for the Town of Clarksville. “This is their chance to have a major impact on our Town’s infrastructure over the next 50+ years.”
They next question you may be asking is, ‘what will the Town of Clarksville do with the Connect Clarksville Thoroughfare Plan?’ Town planning officials say the plan will serve as a sort of guide for future development of area roads.
“We will use the thoroughfare plan as a guide any time we build new streets or roads in the Town, such as what is currently going on in South Clarksville,” said Conklin. “The plan will also come into play any time we make any major changes to existing roads or streets.”
Although the timeline for this project is fluid, representatives from Clark Dietz say they hope to finalize the new thoroughfare plan and take it to the Town Council for adoption in June 2023. We will of course continue to post updates on our website, TownofClarksville.com, as well as on the Town’s Facebook and Twitter pages.
If you have any questions regarding the Connect Clarksville Thoroughfare Plan, contact Communications Director Ken Conklin at firstname.lastname@example.org or (812) 283-1423.