Should Richmond ban cars in Carytown?

Posted at 1:47 PM, Jul 25, 2023
and last updated 2023-07-25 17:30:27-04

RICHMOND, Va. -- Transportation planners in the City of Richmond want to know what you think about closing part of West Cary Street to car traffic.

The city began working last summer to identify projects that would increase equity across transportation modes. After multiple rounds of public comment, the guiding vision is laid out by Richmond Connects.

Now into its fourth phase, the next step seeks to prioritize near-term recommendations and develop long-term projects across 17 districts. The top recommendations list for the Near West End includes closing Cary Street to cars in the Carytown shopping district.

An online survey asks for input on how to prioritize the recommendations. The Carytown item asks if closing Cary Street "from Thompson St to Arthur Ashe Blvd to car traffic, creating a shaded pedestrian- and bike-only street" is a high priority.

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Details for how to close West Cary Street to cars are not provided as part of the survey that seeks only to identify public priorities for each district.

As of publication on Tuesday, closing Cary Street to cars ranks as the highest priority among 11 identified recommendations for the area.

But offline, some people are asking for more specifics.

"If they could do it in some way that the merchants don’t get hurt, that people still have access to everything, but I don’t know how they do that," one Carytown shopper said.

"It’ll make parking more complicated," another shopper added. "But, I mean, if they add a little bit of public parking then that’ll be nice."

The Richmond Connects survey is open until August 20. Completed survey entries are being entered into a $100 gift card giveaway.

This is a developing story, so anyone with more information can email to send a tip.

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