DURHAM, N.C. (WNCN) — You’re walking down a Durham sidewalk and suddenly… the concrete ends.
That’s something Paul Jones sees during his daily runs on Pickett Road.
“You go across, but it ends,” Jones said. “It’s like a little gap. It’s kind of annoying.”
Jones usually crosses the road and avoids the gap in the sidewalk. But with cars speeding by, he’s concerned for his safety.
“See all this damage in here?” Jones said while showing a recent car crash site on Pickett Road. “This fence was taken out earlier in the year. A car came in here, lost control and just crashed and took this tree out.”
Kate Rugani shares Jones’ experience during her daily walks.
“That means crossing the street in areas where people don’t always drive as slowly as they should to be mindful of pedestrians,” she said.
Along with six other locations in Durham, a $1 million-plus city project will close the gap on Pickett Road with a new sidewalk section.
“We cross this road on a daily basis multiple times and would use the existing sidewalks if we could,” Rugani said. “But in places, they don’t exist.”
A gravel gap also exists between two pieces of sidewalk on Hunt Street in downtown Durham. That’ll change, officials say.
“Just having additional sidewalks where it’s possible for people to walk safely is a wonderful use of funds,” Rugani said.
According to the city, construction starts next month and ends next April.
The Sidewalk Gaps III project impacts 2814 Pickett Road, 1101 Leon Street, 115 and 117 Hunt Street, Cheek Road between Andover Drive and Hardee Street, South Elm Street at 950 East Main Street and Lumley Road at 2702 Sagebrush Lane.
“We want to make it safe, simple, and sustainable for residents to bike, walk, and roll across Durham,” Durham Transportation Director Sean Egan said in a release. “New sidewalks and a more complete bike network provide better travel options and reduce dependency on fossil fuels and reduce the emissions from traffic congestion.”