The San Diego City Council is planning to spend $100 million over the next ten years to fix the city’s broken sidewalks.
“The proposal is part of an effort to prevent more lawsuits from continuing to pile up against the city,” Fox 5 reported.
“Sidewalks throughout San Diego are often damaged when tree roots push up through the concrete, posing tripping hazards to pedestrians that can be dangerous.”
Councilman Scott Sherman said the city has spent nearly $10 million in injury payouts, due to residents tripping and falling on the broken sidewalks.
“If we would have addressed these things back in the past, we wouldn’t be having those issues now,” he said.
In one lawsuit, the city was forced to pay Cynthia Hedgecock, wife of former Mayor Roger Hedgecock, nearly $85,000 when she suffered from ruptured breast implants after she fell on a sidewalk, according to KTLA.
However, because sidewalk repair is the legal responsibility of adjacent property owners, city officials initially considered using property liens and education campaigns to encourage homeowners to have them fixed.
Now, the city has decided it will take responsibility.
District 5 Councilman Mark Kersey is behind the plan to spend the $100 million to fix the city’s walkways.
“What I’d like to do is spend a lot less money on settling injury claims that people have filed…and spend more money on actually fixing the problem,” Kersey said.
His page on the city’s website stated:
Mark believes maintaining and improving the City’s roads, sidewalks, parks and fire stations is the most pressing issue facing San Diego. As Chair of the Council’s Active Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, he is helping reform how the city evaluates, prioritizes, and invests in infrastructure. He has successfully advocated for increased infrastructure investment in the general fund and orchestrated the development of San Diego’s first comprehensive Multi-Year Infrastructure Investment Plan.
Mission Valley resident Anna Delial stated that she was disappointed it took the city so long to come up with a plan, adding that the sidewalks near her home give her senior dog fits because they are in such terrible shape.
“It’s a sign of years, decades of neglect,” she concluded.
There are currently 81,000 cracked sidewalks in need of repair all over San Diego.