Sidewalks are talk of Richmond’s 8th district council race

Posted at 3:57 PM, Oct 20, 2012
and last updated 2012-10-20 16:57:35-04

RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR) - In Richmond's 8th district, the race for Richmond City Council is heating up -- and sidewalks have folks talking.

"We want to see our tax dollars work for us," challenger Dawn Page said, taking aim at her opponent. "We have many needs in the district."

Richmond's School Board Chair says those needs are not being met.

Page hopes to unseat long time incumbent Reva Trammell and change the landscape in this South Richmond neighborhood.

By adding sidewalks to a dangerous stretch of Walmsley Boulevard near Dorset Road. Page thinks people living here have been complaining about this area for a while.

"It's a high traffic area with pedestrians walking along the streets and no sidewalks," Page said.

This intersection is also the site of a deadly accident in August where a man was killed by a hit-and-run driver.

Page is making some strong allegations against Trammell saying there are new sidewalks and repaved streets where she owns property.

"Why does she have new side walks and drainage on her streets where she has 8 properties that she owns?" Page asked.

CBS 6 News' Sandra Jones went to Trammell’s neighborhood and did find some new sidewalks. Trammell released a statement saying that it is true that the street where she lives. was one of the 60-plus streets that were recently paved with new sidewalks.

Ophelia Daniels, who lives near Walmsley, says the sidewalks are well overdue.

"There is an imminent need for sidewalks there because of the fatalities that have taken place over the years. We can't get anything. But they found the money to do this," Daniels said.

And as we get closer to the November election, Trammell supporters like Robert Henley aren't swayed by the other side.

"She's a very capable woman of doing what she says...she keeps her promise," Henley said. 

And Henley says, Trammell has something to show for it.

"You can look at the way things have been on Jefferson Davis -- and she's just about cleaned all that up," Henley said.

In a statement to CBS 6,  Trammell wrote:

"It is unfortunate that my opponent is trying to use the media to help her failing campaign with deception and untruths,.

I have a long record of being an advocate for my constituents, and will continue to do so.

This is a case of my opponent being desperate, and trying to win at any cost, with half truths, by suggesting that just one street was paved, or just one sidewalk was installed.

It's just not true in the way she said it, and is intended to mislead your viewers."

New sidewalks have been approved by the city administration for Walmsley Boulevard and Dorset Road based on a longstanding request. There has been no word on when those sidewalks will be installed.