Spring in Our Steps: A Citywide Initiative to Take Back Pedestrian Infrastructure

Spring in Our Steps (connect on facebook and twitter) is:

“a consortium of committed Cincinnati residents, who feel that forgotten pedestrian spaces can become some of the city’s best assets. The group initiates community-oriented projects in Cincinnati’s alleyways and city steps, as well as its most neglected sidewalks.”

Spring in Our Steps (SiOS) is the brainchild of Christian Huelsman and Pam Sattler.  The two organizers, who are engaged, are planning its first group cleanup at the intersection of St. Joe Street and Loth Street in Mt. Auburn this Satruday from noon to 5pm. Volunteers are welcome to join the cleanup anytime. Coffee will be provided for early arrivals and, depending on turnout, the couple would like to leverage donated pizza and beverages for about the midpoint (2pm or so). For subsequent cleanups, SiOS wants to include a potluck.

Christian Huelsman and Pam Sattler

The intersection of St. Joe Street and Loth Street:

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Loth Street intersects St. Joe Street one block from the intersection of Vine and St. Joe:

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SiOS is a fantastic project that ought to catch the attention of neighborhood community councils and those at City Hall. On the SiOS website, Christian gives the “Background and Mission of Spring in Our Steps” and includes this excerpt:

In Cincinnati, we are fortunate to have a rich spatial and architecture heritage. However, many have shown concern that Cincinnati lacks an identity or cultural heritage, save for its hyper-centrism on its neighborhoods. However, the city could very well spark a return to a rich, celebrated heritage, in the form of renewed commitment to walkability.

Another great post is “Future pedestrianism in Cincinnati is (much like) its past” wherein Christian writes:

In short, it’s a way to take back the pedestrian realm that no longer serves the users for which it was purposed. The goal is to make these places inviting spaces, possibly causing people to want to use that infrastructure again.

Cincinnati’s public steps already have their supporters (and their own facebook page) and many thanks to Joe Gayetsky, all of Cincinnati’s hillside steps have been mapped and categorized herecommunitywalk.com…. As the city moves to become a more pedestrian-friendly place, efforts like SiOS cannot be undervalued.

South Wendell Alley

  • http://robyncareyallgeyer.wordpress.com robyncareyallgeyer

    Seth, thank you for bringing these great initiatives to a larger audience! Keep up the great work at OTR Matters!

  • Neil

    Go Christian and Pam! Keep up the great work :-)

  • http://CincinnatiTeam.com Saralou Durham

    What a great idea. Our city fathers worked hard to make a walkable and livable city 100+ years ago. With all the financial cutbacks in the city, it’s up to each of us to take time to better our little corners of the world. Maybe we offer to tend a garden they can no longer plant or join a crew like this. In otherwords…VOLUNTEER to help! Make a Difference!