by Tim Bryson, February 15, 2008
Sidewalks in DeKalb county have in recent years been financed by bond issues. In fall of 2006 CHCA mounted a letter-writing campaign to get sidewalks on Desmond Dr, N Superior Ave, and Willivee Rd. (in red on attached map; green lines indicate existing sidewalks)
We even got letters of support from Emory University. Finally, our neighborhood was added to the project list, but the county CEO Vernon Jones and the Transportation Department gave us a lower priority than other streets, and they ran out of money before getting to our neighborhood.
In 2007 newly elected commissioner Jeff Rader chose to take discretionary county funds from another district 2 project (Callanwolde renovation) and use them to help us get the sidewalk on Desmond from Willivee to Clairmont. CHCA President Nancy Ciliax worked closely with county public works contact Dave Pelton to design the route, get the curb stones raised, make room for a planting strip, and install fences. Installation was completed by March 2008.
Funding for the other sidewalks is not yet in sight.
A related development is that the Clifton Corridor led by Emory has been looking at ways to improve the intersection at Clairmont and Desmond. Their interest is to make it easier for employees in the area to walk or bike to work safely. The CHCA board has been consulted in the design process. The next steps involve negotiations with the county and other levels of government to get approvals and funding.