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Posted: Tuesday, May 14, 2013 5:53 pm | Updated: 9:01 pm, Wed Jun 12, 2013.

SARASOTA, Fla. - Walking was once thought to be one of the safest means of traveling. But some say a stretch of sidewalk in Sarasota maybe changing those beliefs, and one man is fighting to get area sidewalks up to the basic ADA compliance standards.

Sidewalks are something most people take for granted.  But for some, they are a vital part of everyday transportation.

"I haven't been able to drive for 20 years," says Jeff Redding who is visually impaired.

He says the stretch of sidewalk that spans Bee Ridge Road in Sarasota has become a major concern for him.  "They put the street lamp post in the middle of the sidewalk.  Some of them are on the north side, some are on the south side, but basically its an obstruction."

The  Americans with Disabilities Act recommends that sidewalks be 5-6 feet wide.  But the street lamps along Bee Ridge Road are positioned closer to the center of the sidewalk, reducing walking space to just over 3 feet in some areas -- way off the recommended numbers.

"I was trying to go around one of those street lamp posts and my handlebar clipped the rim of the lamp post and I ended crashing.  I got 2 broken ribs, I broke my glasses, and that's probably about the 3rd time I got hurt because of the stupid lamp post," said Redding.

So we reached out to the Department of Transportation to find out why the sidewalks don't meet the current ADA regulations.

"In 2009, when these light polls were installed, they were all ADA compliant.  And once we've met those requirements, it is our belief that we are grandfathered into those requirements," said Robin Stublen with the Florida Department of Transportation.

In addition to being exempted from the current ADA standards, Stublen says there are other barriers preventing the street lamps from being moved.  "Right now we are right up against the edge of the right of way.  We have no more room.  Literally millions would be required to purchase any additional right away we would need if we were to relocated the street lamp," said Stublen.

Most of the sidewalks on Bee Ridge would be in compliance if it weren't for this street lamps.   And since they aren't going anywhere anytime soon, those who are visually impaired or in a wheelchair have no choice but travel a little closer to the road. 

But Redding says he isn't giving up his fight to move the lamp post.  He's started a petition and is asking for signatures.

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12 comments:

  • JRedding posted at 8:46 pm on Sat, Jun 28, 2014.

    JRedding Posts: 20

    Sarasota where a homeless Veteran can go to jail for sitting on the
    sidewalk but it is just fine for the government to obstruct sidewalks
    with street lamp posts. Sarasota has strange ethics.

    Please help us in the efforts to relocate the street lamp posts which obstruct
    the center of the Bee Ridge Road Sidewalk by visiting Change.org and
    signing our Petition.

    http://www.change.org/petitions/move-the-street-lamps-completely-off-the-sidewalk

    Thank you.

    Jeff Redding
    Lifetime Member, Blinded Veterans of America

     
  • JRedding posted at 8:59 pm on Tue, Jun 24, 2014.

    JRedding Posts: 20

    Dear Editor:

    Please print this in the Newspaper to help us make our Bee Ridge Road Neighborhood Sidewalks unobstructed and safe.

    Dear Bee Ridge Road Pedestrians:

    I am a vision impaired Disabled Veteran who is organizing an effort (with the help of an ADA Title II Attorney) to relocate the street lamp posts which obstruct the center of the sidewalk on Bee Ridge Road from about the 3700 block (in Front of KFC) east to just before Cattlemen Rd.

    I am looking for others who have been injured or effected by the dangerous location of these street lamp posts.

    I am also looking for photos of Pedestrians as they pass by some of the dangerous lamp posts. Photos of Mother's with strollers, wheelchair users, elderly pedestrians in scooters, and cyclists, etc... would be very helpful.

    If you would like to help make our Neighborhood Sidewalks safe please contact me at 941-227-6965

    Photos of Pedestrians passing the lamp posts may be sent to my email at: reddingjeff9@gmail.com

    Thank you.

    Jeff Redding

     
  • JRedding posted at 11:46 am on Tue, Jun 24, 2014.

    JRedding Posts: 20

    24 June 2014

    David C. Hawk

    Chief Operating Officer

    FHWA – FL Division

    545 John Knox Road

    Suite 200

    Tallahassee, FL 32303

    Phone: 850-553-2203

    Fax: 850-942-9691
    Email: david.hawk@dot.gov

    Dear Mr. Hawk:

    I have reviewed your email and several other internal FDOT emails which I obtained thru a FOIA Request.

    I am happy to see that my concerns are being addressed. However It seams like the emphasis in on making excuses for the sidewalk obstruction. Nobody seams to be really concerned about the real issue of an unsafe sidewalk.

    The FDOT excuses have went from;
    1. The posts are already at the edge of the right of way.
    2. The posts are within 36 inches of the curb and will not be relocated because they are ADA Compliant.
    (an abuse of ADA Law)
    3. The posts could not be placed at the edge of the right of way because of "underground utility issues".

    In Mr. Perkins email of 15 May 2014 (7:38 A.M.) Mr. Perkins stated;

    "My understanding is there were underground utility issues (phone lines, etc.) that, in some places, prevented placing the poles at the back of sidewalk. If we were to try to relocate the poles, we would likely need to acquire right of way, or permanent easements from adjacent property owners (potentially, a 2± year process for each location) in addition to the actual relocation of poles. And we don’t know if there are other underground utilities beyond the right-of-way/property line."

    My question for Mr. Perkins is; Why is it your "understanding that there were underground utility issues..."? There apparently are no underground utility issues on roads which are maintained by the County. You have also verified the plans call for the placement of the poles at the edge of the right of way. The posts were not installed in accordance with the plans or DOT FHA Standards.

    I have obtained copies of the project plans thru a Freedom Of Information Act Request. The plans show the posts at the edge of the sidewalk. However, in the implementation of the plans the posts were not installed at the edge of the sidewalk.

    I believe the "underground utility issues" may be an unsupported excuse given to justify the mistake of the posts installation locations.

    I believe the posts were installed in violation of DOT FHA Above Ground Utility Structure Placement Standards which state the posts should be off the sidewalk when feasible, otherwise to the edge of the right of way. DOT FHA Sidewalk Width Standards speak to how the center of the sidewalk should be reserved for Pedestrians.

    I believe using the ADA minimum width for wheelchair access standards to justify obstructing the center of a sidewalk and violating the above mentioned other DOT FHA Standards is an abuse of ADA Law. This also violates common sense and as a Disabled Veteran dishonors my service to our Country.

    Please review the above concerns and consider relocating the lamp posts in accordance with DOT FHA Above Ground Utility Placement Standards and DOT FHA Sidewalk Width Standards.

    Thank you for your consideration.

    Sincerely,

    Jeff Redding
    Sarasota, FL


     
  • JRedding posted at 12:05 am on Sun, Jun 22, 2014.

    JRedding Posts: 20

    The ADA was not made into law so that the FDOT and their contractor friends can save money by obstructing the middle of sidewalks. As a disabled veteran this dishonors my service. Anyone concerned about Civil Rights and the ADA should be outraged at the conduct of the FDOT.

     
  • JRedding posted at 11:12 am on Tue, Jun 17, 2014.

    JRedding Posts: 20

    David Hawk
    Chief Operating Officer
    FHWA Florida Division
    545 John Knox Road
    Ste 200
    Tallahassee, FL 32303
    850-553-2200
    David.hawk@dot.gov

    Dear Mr. Hawk:

    The FDOT has violated my Civil Right to safe access to walk on the sidewalk near my home. In 2003 the FDOT installed street lamp posts in the middle of the sidewalk on a 1.5 mile span of Bee Ridge Road in Sarasota, Florida.

    When I complained to the FDOT, with many emails there was no reply. When ABC News did a story on the dangerous lamp posts Mr. Robin Stublen, the Tea Party Activist and current Communication Specialist for the FDOT, on a TV Interview told ABC News that I was basically wrong and that the posts were already at the "Edge of the Right of Way". When confronted with this lie Mr. Stublen changed his story and said the posts were further than 36 inches from the curb and therefore were ADA Compliant.

    In additional emails with Mr. Carey Shephard and others at the county, state, and federal levels I have been told about the distance to curb standard.

    I want to inform you that I think they are all wrong in their interpretation of the standards. Distance to curb standards are intended to allow wheelchair access on narrow sidewalks. Distance to curb standards are not intended as a guide for contractors to measure 36 inches from the curb and place lamp post in the middle of the sidewalk.

    Street Lamp Post placement have always been governed by DOT FHA Above Ground Utility Structure Standards which clearly state placement should be at the "Edge of the Right of Way". Perhaps this is why Mr. Stublen used this wording when he said the posts were already at the "Edge of the Right of Way" during the ABC News Interview.

    DOT FHA Sidewalk Width Standards also cover how the center of the sidewalk should be reserved for Pedestrians.

    The ADA Laws should not be used to justify the FDOT and its contractor friends to save money by placing lamp posts in the middle of a sidewalk.

    When you justify this obvious violation of Above Ground Utility Placement Standards with the ADA Standards you are violating the civil rights of all Pedestrians who have a right to an unobstructed sidewalk.

    On a personal note this also wrong ethically and violates the basic laws of common sense. The right of an unobstructed sidewalk is not only for people who travel in wheelchairs with widths of less than 32 inches.

    The dangerous lamp posts run along a Family Park. Children on bicycles, mothers with strollers, and elderly citizens in motorized scooters all use the Bee Ridge Sidewalk. The road has no bicycle lane and the traffic travels 45 to 50 mph.

    One of FDOT's solutions for this dangerous road is to install 12 Pedestrian Safety Islands at a cost of 59K each. This is more than what Sarasota County spends on sidewalk maintenance in an entire year.

    I think the traffic on Bee Ridge travels too fast for Pedestrian Safety Islands and they will only encourage more people to "Jaywalk" and be struck by cars. The FDOT should be more concerned about giving Pedestrians and Cyclists unobstructed sidewalks and/or bicycle lanes.

    It seams to me like the FDOT is run like a For Profit Business and only cares about money. When there is too much corruption in Government you end up with violations of common sense and lamp posts in the middle of a sidewalk.

    Have you seen the new reports which show Florida as the most dangerous place to live for Pedestrians?

    Mr. Hawk Sir, if you do not understand why it is wrong to use the ADA to justify placing lamp posts in the middle of a sidewalk, and why this dishonors my military service, please put me in contact with your Supervisor.

    It has been over ten years since I have been "fighting the battle of the lamp posts". In all that time nobody in government has ever recommended the lamp posts be relocated to the "Edge of the Right of Way" in accordance with DOT FHA Above Ground Utility Structure Standards.

    Mr. Spraggins of Sarasota County told me that all they were required to do was offer me "Reasonable Accommodation", and that I should just walk on the other side of the street. I don't live on that side of the street and that is not "Reasonable Accommodation".

    From 2000 to 2010, there have been 781 federal convictions on corruption charges in Florida. That's an average of one every five days for 10 straight years. (http://archive.wtsp.com/news/local/story.aspx?storyid=257829)

    Are all Florida Government workers corrupt? What ever happened to common sense and empathy?

    Anybody who works with the ADA and Civil Rights should be outraged in the abuse of its laws.

    Please relocate the lamp posts off of the sidewalk when feasible, otherwise to the "Edge of the Right of Way" in accordance with your own standards.

    If I worked in Florida Pedestrian Safety, I would be very ashamed of the poor record and would have a hard time sleeping at night knowing I was responsible for so many people being injured and killed.

    Sleep Well.

    Sincerely,

    Jeff Redding
    Lifetime Member, Blinded Veterans of America
    Sarasota, Florida

     
  • JRedding posted at 10:14 am on Thu, May 29, 2014.

    JRedding Posts: 20

    A new National Pedestrian Safety Report lists four cities in Florida as the most dangerous cities in the Nation for Pedestrians.

    When I attended the FDOT Hearing about the Bee Ridge Road Safety Islands. I questioned a FDOT Official about Florida's Pedestrian Safety Record. The Official said she thought Florida was the 48th State in Pedestrian Deaths and Injuries. I informed her that she was wrong and that Florida was in fact the worst state in the nation in Pedestrian Safety.

    You idiots at the FDOT have no clue about how your incompetence and corruption is causing Pedestrians to be killed. How do you people sleep at night?

    Below are a copy of the comments I submitted to the Public Hearing.

    (For the Public Hearing Comments Record)

    Today I attended the Public Hearing about the Bee Ridge Road Safety Islands.

    I think most attendees were business owners or drivers concerned about individual islands effecting their business or personal driving habits. I may have been the only actual "Bee Ridge Road Pedestrian" at the meeting. The FDOT should really try to do a better job getting the word out and getting more Pedestrians to attend the Public Hearings.

    The cost of the 12 safety islands exceeds Sarasota County Sidewalk Maintenance Costs for an entire year. I think the traffic on Bee Ridge is too fast and busy for Pedestrian Safety Islands. I think this project will only result in a substantial increase in deaths and injuries.

    I have very little respect for the FDOT because you have obstructed the sidewalk by placing posts in the middle of the sidewalk (Bee Ridge from Beneva to Cattlemen). To make it worse you justify this incompetent act with the ADA. As a disabled veteran this is an insult to my service.

    A Nurse at the Bee Ridge VA Clinic witnessed two bicycle accidents caused by the light post in front of the VA Clinic and she had to render medical assistance. I have suffered broken ribs and my step-son was struck by a car trying to avoid a lamp post. He has pins in his neck and is partially paralyzed. He has a hard time wiping himself now. Do you want to come over and wipe him every morning?

    It is impossible to find a lawyer to sue the FDOT because the FDOT employes over 75 lawyers and is too powerful.

    When ABC News interviewed Robin Stublen of the FDOT he said I was wrong about the lamp posts and said they were at the edge of the right of way. Mr. Stublen lied and basically called me a liar on ABC TV News.

    After my trouble with Robin Stublen, I Googled Mr. Stublen, and I Googled "FDOT Corruption". I read how Mr. Stublen was a big Tea Party Activist. I read about FDOT Officials serving time for Right Of Way Bribery. I read about the FBI investigating the FDOT for Construction Contract Rigging.

    Now I understand more why there are lamp posts in the middle of the sidewalk. Now I understand more why the FDOT acts like the cost to move the lamp post a couple of feet would come out of your personal pockets. Now I understand more why so many Pedestrians are injured and killed in Florida.

    I don't think this is the fault of most of the FDOT employes. Most of you probably think it is wrong to obstruct the sidewalk. You may even understand why it is wrong to justify it with the ADA.

    However, I bet none of your ADA Coordinators have a mobility disability. I bet your Bicycle Safety Coordinators never ride bicycles. I bet your Pedestrian Coordinators only walk from the parking lot to the office.

    In my opinion the FDOT does not care about Pedestrian Safety. The FDOT only cares about making money for themselves and their friends.

    Sincerely,

    Jeff Redding
    Sarasota, Florida

     
  • JRedding posted at 2:47 pm on Thu, Apr 17, 2014.

    JRedding Posts: 20

    Mr. Stublen now works as a Communications Specialist for the FDOT. Mr. Stublen's last job was working for Governor Scott. Prior to working for Governor Scott Mr. Stublen was the founder of the Punta Gorda Tea Party Chapter. I learned about this when I Googled Mr. Robin Stublen.

    I understand a little about Politics. After my medical discharge from the military I worked as both a Union Promoter and I was a U. S. Chamber of Commerce Representative.

    In the past 20 years I have volunteered as an Advocate for Disability or Veteran related issues. I do consider myself a Professional Pedestrian when it comes to Bee Ridge Rd.

    I believe Mr. Stublen and probably many others were hired by the FDOT because of their politics, not their expertise in Public Transportation.

    Because of Politics I have suffered broken ribs. My step son was struck by a car when he was passing a lamp post and had to have pins put in his neck.

    A Communication Specialist working for the FDOT should be well versed in communicating the policies and guidelines of the FDOT and DOT FHA. A Communication Specialist for the FDOT should know there are DOT FHA Guidelines about Above Ground Utility Structures. A Communication Specialist for the FDOT should know the DOT FHA ADA Compliance Guidelines are not the only guidelines concerning sidewalk width and obstructions.

    I think the FDOT should be Non-Partisan. Tea Party Activist should not be involved with deciding issues concerning my safety. Otherwise things happen like these Genius's can't even understand it is wrong to obstruct the middle of a sidewalk.

    If a six year old can understand it is wrong to obstruct a sidewalk,what is the excuse of the FDOT?

    Now the FDOT wants to spend 708K on 12 so called Pedestrian Safety Islands on Bee Ridge Road. Yet, there are still no plans to relocate the dangerous utility posts which are in the middle of the sidewalk.

    I think the Pedestrian Islands are a very bad idea. Besides, the very high cost of 708K (more than what Sarasota County spends in an entire on sidewalk maintenance), I think it will result in more deaths and injuries on Bee Ridge Road. During most of the day Bee Ridge is very busy. I could be wrong about this and I am looking forward to hearing other opinions at the Public Hearing on May 1st.

    Since 2009, I have emailed Bicycle Coordinators, ADA Coordinators, and Pedestrian Safety Coordinators at the FDOT and Sarasota County. None of them have been any help. None of them had the "nerve" (I really mean a different word.) to recommend to their bosses the lamp posts be relocated.

    I doubt the Bicycle Safety Specialists ever ride bicycles, the ADA Coordinators probably don't have mobility related disabilities, and the Pedestrian Safety Coordinators only qualifications as a Pedestrian is in walking from their air conditioned cars to their air conditioned offices.

    Why is the FDOT maintaining so many streets in my local community? The FDOT should maintain Interstates and Rural Roads. We would all be much safer if local governments maintained local roads.

    When the next Governor is in office I hope he replaces State Employees who are experts in Political Activism with State Employees who are experts in the field in which they were hired. Until then Florida will remain as the number one State per capita in Pedestrians who are injured or killed.

     
  • JRedding posted at 9:34 am on Thu, Apr 17, 2014.

    JRedding Posts: 20

    Here is a copy of the most recent update to my complaint to the DOT FHA.

    Dear DOT FHA:

    (RE: DOT 2014-082)

    In my previous complaint about the street lamp posts which are in the middle of the sidewalk on Bee Ridge Road, Sarasota, FL I thought they were not ADA Compliant. However, the FDOT said the posts were compliant to the DOT FHA ADA Guidelines because they were within 32 inches of the curb.

    I was very offended when I heard Mr. Stublen of the FDOT tell an ABC News reporter in a television interview (Sarasota sidewalks not ADA compliant - Sarasota News ...), that I was basically lying, that the lamp posts were not in the middle of the sidewalk but they were all the way to the edge of the right of way.

    "In addition to being exempted from the current ADA standards, Stublen says there are other barriers preventing the street lamps from being moved. "Right now we are right up against the edge of the right of way. We have no more room. Literally millions would be required to purchase any additional right away we would need if we were to relocated the street lamp," said Stublen."

    When Mr. Stublen made the above statement I don't think he ever actually looked at the lamp posts in question. He sounded like he was giving a canned answer as if he had answered the same questions several times in the past.

    The truth is the lamp posts are not at the edge of the right of way and it would not be necessary to purchase additional right of way.

    You decide which of us is correct; Mr. Stublen a Communication Specialist for the FDOT who lives in Punta Gorda, or me, a 12 year Navy disabled veteran who must pass by the lamp posts every day to visit the local grocery store, coffee shop, etc.... The provided photos should help in your decision.

    I was assuming lamp posts in the middle of a sidewalk were not in ADA compliance so I did a little more research. Now I understand that the applicable standards are not the DOT FHA ADA Compliance Guidelines. There are other DOT FHA Guidelines for the placement of Above Ground Utility Structures. I believe this is because unobstructed sidewalks are a right to all Pedestrians, not just to Pedestrians in wheelchairs with a width of less than 32 inches.

    When the FDOT uses the ADA Compliance Guidelines to justify placing utility posts in the middle of a sidewalk they are wrong legally, ethically, morally,. and guilty of not using common sense. ADA Compliance Guidelines are not intended to override Above Ground Utility Structure Guidelines they are intended to enhance the guidelines.

    Below I have pasted applicable DOT FHA Guidelines concerning Above Ground Utility Structure Placement as well as guidelines which address how the middle of the sidewalk should be reserved for Pedestrians.

    Please compel the FDOT to identify and relocate lamp posts which are not in compliance with the DOT FHA Above Ground Utility Structure Placement Guidelines. Please compel the FDOT to undergo training in the proper placement of street lamp posts and other Above Ground Utility Structures. Please compel the FDOT to undergo training in identifying the applicable DOT FHA Guidelines in responding to complaints about sidewalk obstructions. Thank you.

    Sincerely,

    Jeff Redding
    Sarasota, FL 34233


    Applicable DOT FHA Guidelines
    source www.fhwa.dot.gov

    FHWA policy is that utility facilities should be located as close to the right-of-way line as feasible. The Green Book, AASHTO Highway Safety Design and Operations Guide, 1997, (Yellow Book) and the AASHTO A Guide for Accommodating Utilities within Highway Right-of-way, all state that utilities should be located as close to the right-of-way line as feasible. The Yellow Book, recognizing that crashes are overrepresented on urban arterials and collectors, says this means as far as practical behind the face of outer curbs and where feasible, behind the sidewalks.

    It is not always feasible to relocate all poles within project limits. Critical locations should be considered for improvement, such as those dictated by crash experience or in potential crash locations, such as within horizontal curves. Where poles cannot be relocated from critical locations, mitigation such as breakaway or shielding should be considered. Poles should not be installed in a location that could act as a funnel directing an errant vehicle into an obstacle (for example a roadside drainage ditch, that would also disrupt the hydraulics). Locating a pole as far as feasible from the traveled way improves sight lines and visibility, providing a safer roadside.

    And;
    source:
    http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/environment/bicycle_pedestrian/publications/sidewalks/chap4a.cfm

    Chapter 4 Sidewalk Width

    The width of the sidewalk is also affected by pedestrian travel tendencies.Pedestrians tend to travel in the center of sidewalks to separate themselves from the rush of traffic and avoid street furniture, vertical obstructions, and other pedestrians entering and exiting buildings. Pedestrians avoid the edge of the sidewalk close to the street because it often contains utility poles, bus shelters,parking meters, sign poles, and other street furniture. Pedestrians also avoid traveling in the 0.610 m (24 in) of the sidewalk close to buildings to avoid retaining walls, street furniture, and fences (OR DOT, 1995). The sidewalk area that pedestrians tend to avoid is referred to as the shy distance. Taking into account the shy distance, only the center 1.830 m (6 ft) of a 3.050-m (10-ft) sidewalk is used by pedestrians for travel, as shown in Figure 4-7. Thus,the effective width of a sidewalk, not the design width, constitutes the sidewalk area needed to accommodate anticipated levels of pedestrian traffic.

    When right-of-way is acquired for sidewalk construction, it is important that adequate width be included to make the facility accessible. If sidewalks are not currently included, the agency responsible for sidewalk construction might consider purchasing additional right-of-way to anticipate future construction. When improving existing facilities, designers should consider purchasing additional right-of-way or narrowing the vehicle portion of the roadway.
    ****

     
  • JRedding posted at 4:33 pm on Mon, Apr 14, 2014.

    JRedding Posts: 20

    The County and State say the lamp posts will not be moved because they are ADA Compliant according to DOT FHA ADA Compliance Guidelines because there is at least 32 inch clearance to the curb.

    This may be true but the lamp posts are clearly not in compliance with several DOT FHA Above Ground Utility Structure Placement Guidelines shown below.

    I find it very offensive that the FDOT would use the ADA to justify violating DOT FHA Above Ground Utility Structure Placement Guidelines and Pedestrians Civil Right to safe sidewalks.

    FHWA policy is that utility facilities should be located as close to the right-of-way line as feasible. The Green Book, AASHTO Highway Safety Design and Operations Guide, 1997, (Yellow Book) and the AASHTO A Guide for Accommodating Utilities within Highway Right-of-way, all state that utilities should be located as close to the right-of-way line as feasible. The Yellow Book, recognizing that crashes are overrepresented on urban arterials and collectors, says this means as far as practical behind the face of outer curbs and where feasible, behind the sidewalks.

     
  • JRedding posted at 5:13 pm on Mon, May 20, 2013.

    JRedding Posts: 20

    Yes, they should have relocated the posts six months ago when the sidewalk slabs the post stood on. The posts caused the sidewalk to sink and caused a tripping hazard.

    Mr. Stublen is wrong, the posts were never compliant with the FDOT own compliance guide lines,NONE of the posts are on the edge of the right of way. They are closer to the middle of the sidewalk.

    You don't have to be an engineer to look at the lamp posts and see how they were placed with no regard to pedestrians or the disabled. For an example of the correct way to place a lamp post, look at the lamp posts on Honorey Ave., just south of Bee Ridge. Sarasota County maintains that road and they do a good job on safety.

    Please take a look at this YouTube video which shows what it is like at night on the Bee Ridge sidewalk. Also, when the lamp post are located off the sidewalk on the far side from the road, they would also provide more light for pedestrians using the sidewalk.

    http://youtu.be/08F6G2QTk8E

    Pedestrians are being injured and probably killed because of such a basic common sense thing. Please don't block the sidewalk!

     
  • JRedding posted at 10:21 pm on Fri, May 17, 2013.

    JRedding Posts: 20

    I think they worked on the sidewalk six months ago following up on my previous complaints. The lamp posts had caused the sidewalk to sink causing a tripping hazard. I don't know if it was the county or state who did that work, but they did do a good job making the sidewalk less bumpy.

    I think Mr. Stublin of the FDOT is just trying to say anything that sounds good. The lamp posts were never in ADA Compliance. If the FDOT considered pedestrians the posts would never have been installed in the middle of the sidewalk. They would not have to purchase land if they installed in the medium of the street (completely off the sidewalk) or at to one side of the sidewalk.

    For a proper example of lamp post location look at the lamp posts on Honorey, just south of Bee Ridge. Sarasota County did a great job of proper lamp post installation and bicycle lanes.

    Anyone who looks at the lamp posts on Bee Ridge can tell there was no consideration to pedestrians or disabled people. We have a right to equal and safe access to travel on the sidewalk.

    If the FDOT is not forced to relocate the lamp posts they will continue to obstruct the sidewalks of Florida. Hundreds of people will continue to be injured and perhaps killed.

    I also think Sarasota County should get involved and not just say it is up to the FDOT. Sarasota County and City should sue the FDOT your county residents are the people being injured.

    If you believe pedestrians, the elderly, disabled people in wheel chairs, blind people, and cyclists are being denied equal access to the sidewalk please send and email to "ada.complaints@usdoj.gov" and lodge an ADA Compliance Complaint against the Florida Department of Transportation and ask for them to be forced to relocate non-compliant street lamp posts.

    Thank you.

    Jeff Redding


     
  • the watcher posted at 7:53 pm on Tue, May 14, 2013.

    the watcher Posts: 1

    This should have been considered months ago... There was a sidewalk project just completed less than six months ago...