by Michael Dantzler

Photo by Susan DuPlessis

It’s been a few years since I lived in the Summit neighborhood.  One of perks of living in the Summit is the access to safe trails and sidewalk infrastructure.  A couple times a week, I would walk and run along Summit Parkway. I felt safe with how cars, joggers, and cyclists shared the road; I never felt alone.  My mother would even take walks in the area as well when she could. However, the closer I walked towards Clemson Road, the more uncomfortable it was for me because cars drove at almost freeway speeds.  

The Village of Sandhill was in reach but it was just easier to take my car.  I couldn’t imagine lugging groceries from there to the Summit!

Overall, after living there, I learned that many neighborhoods had sidewalks within their community, but leaving the neighborhood meant having to sacrifice walkability. There is a 50/50 chance of not having any sidewalks when venturing out of the neighborhood!

For example, the stretch of Clemson Road between Summit Parkway and HardScrabble Road is one of the most dangerous areas for crossing the roadway.   A few weeks ago, we interviewed representative Ivory Thigpen at North Springs Park, the aforementioned stretch where there’s a crosswalk crossing the dangerous flow of traffic.  Here’s a highlight video of that interview of Thigpen with our interviewers Amy Johnson-Ely, and Tiffany James.

 “The rent we pay for the space we occupy is to care for one another” ~ Ivory Thigpen

We were so inspired to hear Ivory Thigpen’s thoughts on the importance of advocating for everyone to have mobility access.  I can’t wait to hear from even more brilliant minds across South Carolina!  If you’re interested in joining our Speakers Bureau, check out our Google Form or contact Corrine Reed at corrine@pccsc.net or 803-445-1099.