Pedestrians battle iced over sidewalk bridges in downtown Kansas City - +

Headlines are quick hits from media outlets from Missouri and around the world. Follow the headline link for the full story. The source of this headline says:

To avoid having to get behind the wheel, Kansas City native Tim Kramps choose to walk to his New Year’s Eve parties. . . .

Bridges in the crossroads area, like at 20th and Oak and on Main Street outside Union Station, were still iced over. . .

The city's public works director tells 41 Action News they do not see high pedestrian traffic in these areas-so they have not worked to clean them.

"The city wants us, they want more people living down here and part of that is we're going to walk either to get to places or to get to busses or the streetcar we need those sidewalks cleared for us because we don't like walking in the street," said Kramps.

MoBikeFed comment: With issues like this, most Missouri cities have faced a chicken and egg problem for the past hundred years or so. Not many people use sidewalks, so there is little point keeping them cleared in winter--or in building them at all.

But with fewer sidewalks, fewer people walk.

Now there is even less reason to build or maintain sidewalks.

Finally, after years of work and advocacy, we are out of that death spiral. The population of downtown Kansas City (for example) has hit a low and is now rebounding.

It is time for cities to make the investment in the communities they want to build. People want to live in places like downtown because it is walkable and bikeable. That means we have to make the investment in building and maintaining sidewalks and other infrastructure that makes it possible.