May 2003

North Buckhead Newsletter

Page 5

Sidewalks, continued

(Continued from page 4)

sidewalk provides a secure means of foot and bicycle travel to and from shops, school, and friend's homes.  Without sidewalks   children are cut off from the community and from one another, and their parents are forced into car pools and commutes just to provide companionship for the kids.

Savvy business owners also know that    sidewalks mean more money for them, too.  As early as 1991, surveys in Atlanta showed that when trails or sidewalks connect     residential to commercial areas, business in those areas goes up from 20-25 per cent.  A report from the urban magazine
City     Comforts noted, "Of prime importance in commercial areas are sidewalks, and the   position of buildings to sidewalks.  What brings in the customers is buildings that come up to sidewalks, where people can stroll and shop safely."

In the past, Atlanta merchants insisted that people would only frequent big malls or strip centers where they could park virtually at the door of the shop.  That accounts for our huge, ugly shopping centers surrounded by acres of parking lots, and the numerous

"strips" that mar the landscape.  Recently, however, shoppers have gotten fed up with the unpleasant aesthetics, and with dodging cars in mall parking lots.  Now the call is for neighborhood shops within easy walking   distance from homes. In The Death and Life of Great American Cities, master planner Jane Jacobs notes that, "Parking lots are ugly and dangerous, and now actually deter shoppers.  It is sidewalks that draw        customers."

Sidewalks also make economic sense for the city.  They can be patrolled by police on bikes, which is considerably cheaper than assigning patrol cars to cruise a neighborhood.  It costs only $1,300 to fully equip a bike officer, but $25,000 to equip one squad car.  In addition, if only four per cent of Atlanta's population used sidewalks for shopping or commuting, instead of cars, it would take about 25,000 autos off our roads and highways, and significantly reduce air pollution.

Sidewalks mean better quality of life…and money in your pocket.  Where else can you find such a deal?

Links to articles in this Newsletter:

Page 1 - 'Spring Fling' on May 18 / Bill Kennedy

Page 2 - What is North Buckhead?

Page 3 - North Buckhead Park: New grass and other news

Page 4 - Sidewalks mean money in your pocket

Page 5 - Sidewalks, continued

Page 6 - Popular Area Swimming Pools

Page 7 - Zoning and NPU-B Report / Neighborhood Restaurants / Little India Restaurant Review

Page 8 - Roxboro Road Widening / State Legislators

Page 9 - City Government Contacts / City Service Problems

Page 10 - Bidding open to sponsor North Buckhead's web site

Page 11 - Annual Meeting report / Businesses join NBCA

Page 12 - Nature Preserve Trees Live On Inside Tunnel Site

Page 13 - Trees, continued / Preserve Expansion?