Reimagining Louisville’s Preston Corridor
Written by Cooper & Friedman PLLC on December 31, 2021
While you may have never heard of the “Preston Corridor,” you’ve most definitely encountered it at one point or another if you live in Louisville. This term refers to an 11-mile long stretch of road, the length of Preston Street to Preston Highway, which spans all the way from downtown Louisville to Bullitt County. Besides being one of the most frequented sections of road in the city, officials estimate that it connects over 40 neighborhoods and over 47,000 people live within a 10 minute walk of the Corridor.
In mid-November, local leaders held several community workshops to discuss the future of the Preston Corridor. Why? Because it’s incredibly dangerous. In fact, Rachel Casey, an urban planner at the Louisville Office of Advanced Planning and Sustainability, claimed that the street has “the highest crash rate in the county.”
She’s not wrong. According to research by the Courier Journal, over 50 crashes resulting in serious injury or death have occurred in the past 5 years along the corridor. Many people feel unsafe walking or biking. The one-way portions of the road are “dangerous and encourage speeding” as well. ‘
Hit-and-runs in particular are unfortunately quite common along the Preston Corridor. On December 5th, a man on a moped was killed by a driver along the 6100 block of Preston Highway. On September 5th, a motorist killed a pedestrian near a cemetery at Preston Highway and Reading Road and fled the scene on foot. On August 14th, a female pedestrian was killed in a crosswalk at Preston Highway and Antle Ave. The motorist fled the scene and was never identified.
The dangerous nature of the Corridor has even affected the viability of future developments. Plans to move Louisville’s Greyhound station from downtown to Preston Highway have been scrutinized after citizens cited “safety concerns” around the proposed location.
These factors are why city officials have created the Preston Corridor Plan, a project which aims to work with the “Preston community to re-envision the corridor and develop a Framework Plan to guide future growth and redevelopment.” The team wants to focus on individual sections of the road, addressing accessibility, greenspace, and other design factors to improve the experience and safety of the roadway. Work will begin in the Summer of 2022, but in the meantime, you can submit your suggestions, ideas and feedback on their survey, here.
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