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Karl Dean's Budget Would Nearly Double Sidewalk Money -- Sky Arnold

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There are no sidewalks connecting Hillwood High and H.G. Hill Middle School.

That's a problem for parents like Rachel Hardin.

"It is unsafe," said Hardin. "This is a school zone clearly marked and they're not slowing down."

Students frequently walk on the side of the road between the two schools for classes including Hardin's son Shane last year.

Parents have been asking for sidewalks for ten years there and it's not the only project like that.

Metro Council Member Phil Claiborne says he has 15 sidewalk projects on a list he's been trying to complete since taking office in 2007.

"I can't tell you one has been completed yet," said Claiborne.

Claiborne was encouraged this week by a budget request from Mayor Karl Dean.

The Mayor's budget proposal includes $15 million for sidewalks.

Last year Nashville spent just $8 million.

"The districts have been on a sidewalk diet and the central core had been feasting on sidewalks so hopefully this is the Mayor listening to Council Members," said Claiborne.

That money won't go as far as you might think though.

Half is needed for repairs and the remaining $7.5 million will build about 5 miles of sidewalk.

Public Works engineer Mark Macy says there's a good reason why sidewalks are so expensive to build in Nashville.

"The areas that need sidewalks  none of the infrastructure is in the right spot so you have to deal with drainage.  YOu have to fix all the driveways," said Macy.

Macy says sometimes money isn't the only issue either.

The hold up on the sidewalks by H.G. Hill Middle School is a section of right-of-way that the Hillwood Country Club has not been willing to part with.

Dean's sidewalk budget still needs approval from Metro Council.

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