5-mile facelift aims to make Hull Street safer

Posted at 6:40 PM, Dec 19, 2012
and last updated 2012-12-19 18:41:57-05

RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR) -- A busy stretch of Hull Street Road in the city of Richmond is about to get a major safety makeover. And the project will spill over into part of Chesterfield County, too.

Rodney Edwards, a local convenience store clerk has seen first-hand how dangerous it can be, was working early Thanksgiving morning when a man was hit and killed in front of the store on Hull Street Road.

Edwards rushed out to help, but it was too late.

Others who work nearby say pedestrians take their chances every day walking on that busy stretch of road.

Todd Maynard, who runs Cloverhill Motors, says it’s just too dangerous a place for so much foot traffic.

“You see people out here trying to cross 6, 7 lanes of traffic when it's dark out. There’s no safety and there’s only one option and that’s to walk in the road,” Maynard said.

Maynard says the pedestrian struck and killed on Hull Street Road on Thanksgiving morning reinforces his belief that safety changes are needed.

“The man that was hit on the road here, it’s not surprising. When it’s that dark you just can’t see them unless the business lights are on. There are no lights to light up this area to see," Maynard explained.

City leaders say there is a plan in the works to address those safety issues.

In fact, a federal grant from the Department of Transportation and the Department of Housing and Urban Development, they’ll work with Chesterfield and the Virginia Local Initiatives Support Corporate to make this corridor safer.

The goal is to transform Hull Street Road into a safe, walk-able and community-oriented avenue.

“It will look better. There will be medians, sidewalks, bike lanes and more pedestrian amenities. There will be noticeable improvements,” James Hill, a planner for the city of Richmond, said.

Hill has been working closely on this Hull Street Road revitalization corridor project. Hill says they are looking to hear more feedback from people who live and work in that area.

The last chance for neighbors and business owners along Hull Street Road to give input on this plan will be at an upcoming meeting on Jan. 8. at 6 p.m. at Manchester Middle School’s auditorium.

Hill also says the program will be introduced in English and Spanish and that families are welcome.