Readers weigh in on valley walkability in survey

How walkable is your neighborhood? View Newspapers has created a survey encouraging readers to share their perspective on the pedestrian experience in Southern Nevada. Questions invite multiple answers. To take the survey online, visit tinyurl.com/walkvegas. Readers are also welcome to mail survey responses to Walkability Surveys, View Newspapers, P.O. Box 70, Las Vegas, NV., 89125-0070. Comments from readers who already have taken the survey are included below.

Walkability Survey

1. Where and why do you walk?

Exercise for myself, my pet or my children

To get to work

To access public transportation

To get myself or my children to school

To do shopping or errands

For recreation

For environmental considerations

To meet neighbors and get to know my neighborhood

I don’t walk in my neighborhood.

Share other reasons you walk.

READER RESPONSES:

– "As a long-time resident, both myself and my family walk for a variety of reasons."

– "My wife and I walk in the neighborhood occasionally, mainly to blow off some steam when we are upset about something. Not really fitness nuts."

– "Because I was designed that way."

2. Is there room for you to walk?

Yes, there are existing sidewalks, pathways or safe shoulders.

No, sidewalks are blocked, broken or cracked.

No, sidewalks start and stop in a way that makes it difficult to walk uninterrupted.

No, there are no safe sidewalks, pathways or shoulders.

Share comments about your walk.

READER RESPONSES:

– "In particular parts of Las Vegas, it is often difficult and dangerous to walk safely due to either the poor condition of the sidewalks, inconsistency of the sidewalks or absolute nonexistence of the sidewalks.

– "In some places, it is little more than crushed rock. Some properties have their shrubs and trees extending clear into the sidewalk so you have to step on the street to get around them. Some properties have huge, barking dogs that look like they could bound over the fence and get us, making us cross the street. Some areas are poorly lit and are hangouts for bums and packs of potential ‘gang-bangers.’ When we walk, I always carry a large pocket knife and know a few martial arts techniques just in case."

– "My immediate neighborhood, on the border of Winchester and Paradise, is a mish-mosh of custom homes, empty lots and half-developed housing, so sidewalks come and go every few feet. We don’t walk our dogs like we used to in our old, more walkable ‘hood, because we don’t want to walk them in the street."

– "The lack of connecting sidewalks and lack of walking paths in my neighborhood makes walking unnecessarily long. A half- mile (as a bird flies) distance takes two miles to walk due to gated neighborhoods, blocked right of ways."

– "There are sidewalks outside of the subdivision but very sporadic. Very frustrating."

3. Is it easy to cross the streets?

Yes

No, the road is too wide.

No, there are no crosswalks or traffic signals.

No, the traffic signals are not timed correctly, making me wait too long or rush to cross.

No, the view of traffic is blocked by parked cars, trees or plants.

No, curb cuts are missing or in need of repair.

Tell us about your experiences crossing the street.

READER RESPONSES:

– "Pedestrian signals are not always timed with traffic flow. Weekends they are not automatic. You have to push a button to activate. If (you are) too late (you) have to wait for another traffic flow."

– "There are places where you can’t see around parked cars and bushes well enough to be sure no cars are coming around the corner without stepping into the street. There are a couple of intersections that don’t even have stop signs or traffic lights and you just have to take your chances, too."

– "Depends. I live near the Viking/Pecos-McLeod intersection, which is only a few blocks from Flamingo but really should have its own crosswalk, especially with a new school being built right there. Otherwise, the signals and crosswalks in the neighborhood are good."

– "There are crosswalks on the corners, but if I am walking my child to school and use the crosswalks, you have to add an extra 30 minutes to the walk."

4. Is your walk accessible to people of all abilities?

Yes, my area has sidewalks that can accommodate wheelchairs safely.

No, my area has sidewalks, but they are cracked and broken, too narrow or obstructed.

No, my area has no sidewalks.

Tell us about your experiences with accessibility."

READER RESPONSES:

– "There are still some curbs that could be fixed for wheelchairs, strollers."

– "I wouldn’t even attempt to take a wheelchair down our sidewalks."

– "(Sidewalks are cracked and broken, too narrow or obstructed.) Ironic, considering there is a retirement community and a hospice is within two blocks of my house."

– "No. For over two years, I have been publicly advocating for ADA, Americans with Disabilities Act, compliancy where the city of Las Vegas and adjoining Clark County have failed to abide by the federal law. An estimated 10,000-12,000 individuals have handicaps in east Las Vegas, i.e. Ward 5, Ricki Barlow, and Ward 3, Bob Coffin. The city spokesperson had improperly stated publicly the city of Las Vegas was ‘grandfathered in’ and had no responsibility to act to correct the problem and fix the many obstacles or nonexistent pathways that currently deter some handicapped residents from participating in everyday functions like many others in the community. After a researched 12-page complaint, and sidewalks being buoyed about by two politicians without a response, the victor finally started correcting some sidewalks – beginning with his own neighborhood. In part, this will address some documented problems. However, the city does not abide by federal law when it comes to employing an ADA coordinator to which citizens could call or approach about literally hundreds of non-ADA compliant issues."

5. Do the drivers in your neighborhood behave well?  

Yes.

No, drivers back into streets without looking.

No, drivers do not watch for or yield to pedestrians.

No, motorists drive too fast.

No, drivers stop too close to crosswalks.

No, drivers are too frequently impaired and/or inexperienced.

Share your experiences with drivers in your neighborhood.

READER RESPONSES:

– "There are unfortunately many unlicensed drivers and many drunk drivers who in turn cause many accidents in east Las Vegas."

– "There are some people who are careful, but way too many who commit one or more of the marked things above on a daily basis. Heck, I am nearly hit several times a week by other drivers when I am also driving!"

– "I live on Flamingo Road, which is extremely busy. Cars travel swiftly, are impatient to turn and do not yield to pedestrians at the crosswalks at all times. I feel at a disadvantage being a pedestrian in this environment."

– "Very rarely do drivers even stop at stop signs."

6. Is it easy to follow safety rules?

Yes, I can cross at crosswalks or in areas where I can see and be seen.

No, I can’t cross at crosswalks because they are too far away or unavailable.

Yes, I can walk on sidewalks or shoulders facing traffic.

No, I can’t walk on sidewalks or shoulders facing traffic.

Tell us about your experiences trying to follow pedestrian rules.

READER RESPONSES:

– "There are several places where there is not (a) marked crosswalk for a couple of blocks. People jaywalk all the time because they won’t walk all the way to the nearest lighted intersection to cross."

– "It is easy to follow the safety rules, but drivers do not. I prefer to cross into the middle of the street and wait on the median strip than use the crosswalk as it is safer for me to assess there is no oncoming traffic than to use the crosswalk where cars regularly run red lights and do not yield to pedestrians. There are also great distances between crosswalks."

7. Is your walk pleasant and safe?

Yes, my walk is well-lit and safe.

Yes, my walk includes plenty of resting places.

No, my walk is in an area that is dirty, littered or polluted.

No, there is too much traffic.

No, there is no place to rest.

No, I don’t feel safe walking.

Tell us what makes your walk pleasant or unpleasant.

READER RESPONSES:

– "People are kind usually.

– "There are a few spots in the neighborhood that are safe, well-lit and clean, but the majority of the area is the opposite.

– "Walking in Las Vegas in general is unpleasant. As a pedestrian, I am continually harassed by passing drivers. There is no shelter, even the most populated areas can be poorly lit and the ever-present traffic makes it extremely unpleasant and threatening. I do not walk for pleasure. I walk out of necessity, and I feel that I have to continually be alert for traffic dangers and also for potential harassment/threats by other people on the street and also car drivers.

– "Lights are often out, but other than that (it is) relatively safe."

– "(There is a ) lack of parks/drinking fountains."

– "Traffic is too quick. Crosswalks are far away, and drivers are not obeying all the rules, especially in school zones."

8. What safety concerns do you have about walking in your neighborhood?

None. I feel safe and satisfied with the walkability in my neighborhood.

I am concerned about stray, unrestrained or wild animals.

I am concerned about potential criminal activity.

I am concerned about traffic dangers.

I am concerned about unsafe sidewalks that are in need of repair.

Share other concerns you have about the walkability of your neighborhood.

READER RESPONSES:

– "Being sideswiped by a car."

– "I know which streets to avoid because people often have aggressive dogs unrestrained in the front yard."

– "While I am concerned about pedestrians, I am most concerned about the handicapped in wheelchairs, walkers, crutches and with disabilities where the sidewalks force them off the sidewalk because obstacles or where sidewalks simply disappear or the broken sidewalks have steep angles, and similar. Every day this is a challenge for thousands of people, and yet City Hall does not see it that way. No board, no commission, no ADA coordinator, little attention since passage of the 1990 ADA (Act), simply negligent."

– "Neighbors that don’t leash or restrain pets and cause fights, jump out and attack my pets while in leash."

9. Are public and retail services in your neighborhood accessible to pedestrians?

There is nothing to walk to in my neighborhood.

I live within walking distance of a library.

I live within walking distance of a park.

I live within walking distance of a community center.

I live within walking distance of a school.

I live within walking distance of a place to purchase groceries.

I live within walking distance of a coffee shop or restaurant.

Share other amenities you can walk to in your neighborhood.

READER RESPONSES:

– "Within walking distance, but not accessible due to complete absence of pedestrian infrastructure."

– "I am in walking distance to main bus routes and bus stops and retail outlets. I chose to live where I live as a non-driver largely owing to the proximity of these amenities."

– "If you count a 7-Eleven as a ‘place to get groceries,’ then there is a place to get them in walking distance. The school rarely does anything community-related other than a place to put your kid for school. The ‘restaurant’ is a Del Taco, but it’s OK. Other than that, unless you consider five miles or more ‘walking distance,’ there isn’t much around us."

– "Everything! The Strip, coffee, Luv-It Custard, (the) Arts District."

– "Our amenities within a half-mile are considerable – including multiple grocery stores, restaurants, etc. – but most require crossing major thoroughfares, and the shopping centers themselves are not pedestrian-friendly at all, requiring a lot of dodging cars through parking lots to get to any sort of sidewalk."

10. In what ZIP code is your home located? And what are your cross streets?

So far, readers have responded from 89104, 89110, 89113, 89117, 89119, 89120, 89121, 89135, 89139, 89149 and 89178.

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