Making Fairbury’s Sidewalks and Trails Safer, To Promote Healthy Lifestyles

FAIRBURY – With many residents of Fairbury living within 15 minutes of their workplace — 73 percent to be exact — It can promote walking or biking to work. But can the streets of Fairbury be a little more safe for those who aren’t driving? That’s what a group of individuals from the Nebraska Walkable Communities Project came to talk about at Fairbury Junior and Senior High School on Sunday. They spoke with various Fairbury residents to come up with a plan to make walking and biking safer in and around the city. Julie Harris who is the executive director of the Nebraska bicycling alliance said that the meeting was a good opportunity to address concerns that the public has about walking and biking on the streets.

“So whether it’s constructing new trails that make it safer for walking and biking, addressing specific intersections, sidewalk connectivity, whatever those things are it will give them a chance to decide how they want to move forward with their goals.” Harris said.
The group goes around to different communities in Nebraska to come up with solutions for better walking and biking around their city. Some solutions include better signage along walking paths.
“We have communities like Sidney and Hebron that are implementing signage type projects, where they’re better putting signs on their trails to better define distances that people could walk. they call it destination or way-finding signage. And so it helps people know that instead of getting in my car I can spend 10 minutes walking this particular path and I can get where I need to be.” Jeremy Grandstaff said, who is the process architect for the Nebraska Walkable Communites project.
Making it so that walking and biking is safer in the city doesn’t mean just creating new trails, but it also means changing signs at intersections among other alternatives. There are also a large portion of students that walk or bike to school, so making the streets and trails safer would benefit them greatly.