Business owners think 5th Avenue changes create more problems

Business owners think 5th Avenue changes create more problems (Image 1)

Some working in the downtown area believe 5th Avenue opening up to two-way traffic has created more problems for drivers.

Dan Bennett, owner of Fox's Beauty Supply, said he's noticed more wrecks near his business since the change.

“We've had this place for seven years. There was one serious accident that I remember before they changed the street over. There have been three in the past couple of weeks,” said Bennett.

In one of those crashes, Bennett said a motorcyclist was struck when a car turned in front of him not anticipating oncoming traffic.

Another crash involved a fire truck that collided with a delivery truck last week, according to Bennett.

The business owner said another problem is that MTA buses are having trouble making the turn now that traffic is two-way.

“Everyone had more room to maneuver when it was one-way. People would stop; buses could get around them. Now they can't,” said Bennett.

A viewer sent Nashville's News 2 a photo on June 25 of an MTA bus that had struck a light pole while trying to turn onto 5th Avenue.

Those working in the area say it wasn't the first time it's happened.

“It's truly tight. Lanes here are very tight,” said Bennett.

“I think they should have left it a one-way street,” said Mike James, who works downtown.

The street became two-way in May.

City officials said the change was “long overdue” and it would “increase pedestrian safety.”

Leaders also said making the street two-way would make it easier for people, especially visitors, to get around town.

Nashville's News 2 contacted Metro Public Works. A spokesperson said there are currently no plans to make any changes to the street.

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