Planning for Traffic

Life is too short for traffic.

But endless traffic is exactly what our development patterns in west Fayetteville have given us. As the first City Council Member from west of I-49, Kyle brought the perspective of the west Fayetteville commute to Council conversations from day one.

Kyle understands the mistakes that have gotten us to this point and has made the commuter experience a focal point of his work with the Transportation Committee and in debates about zoning and development. He will work to improve our traffic flow by:

  • advocating for greater street connectivity between neighborhoods so we have multiple routes without funneling everyone onto one or two main roads;
  • promoting the creation of job opportunities and service businesses in west Fayetteville so residents can get what they need without crossing the highway with every trip;
  • tackling the seemingly small details that create huge frustrations like the traffic light timings on Wedington and the lane configurations at Porter Road that forced Mt. Comfort traffic into a single lane;
  • working with the Fayetteville Public Schools to streamline traffic flow around schools for more efficient drop-off and pick-up without interfering with surrounding neighborhoods, and
  • investing in public transit to ensure all residents can equitably move around our city.

Traffic is a complicated infrastructure issue and it’s interwoven with every land development decision we make. Sprawling development – rings of new neighborhoods extending out past the edge of the city – are one of the biggest culprits for adding new vehicle trips to our roads. Kyle brings the strong analytical skills of a computer scientist and math teacher to ensure our transportation network will be ready to serve the needs of our growing population.

Parks & Trails

Parks are the centerpieces of our neighborhoods, and our trails tie them all together.

That’s why Council Member Smith helped make sure west Fayetteville was well represented in the 2019 bond projects list that voters approved and will make sure we see those projects through, including:

  • permanently saving Lewis Park by partnering with the Fayetteville Public Schools to purchase the property from the University of Arkansas;
  • creating and implementing a master plan for Bryce Davis Park between Salem Ave and The Links;
  • construction of world-class cyclo-cross race track at Centennial Park;
  • developing Lierly Park near Clabber Creek IV;
  • constructing the Hamestring Creek trail bridge to connect between neighborhoods on Mt. Comfort and Wedington; and
  • connecting our existing trail segments to parks and the Razorback Greenway and by finishing the Clabber Creek and Shiloh Trails.

West Fayetteville is growing faster than its parks system, but Kyle is working to make sure every area of Ward 4 has access to nearby parks. Kyle brought together neighbors and land owners to negotiate a commitment for a land donation that will give west Fayetteville our city’s largest community park. The future Underwood Park on the old Razorback Golf Course will be twice the size of Wilson or Gully Parks.

Council Member Smith will pursue policies that encourage more land dedication for neighborhood parks south of Wedington.

Support for Law Enforcement & First Responders

Council Member Smith supports the construction of a world-class public safety campus for the new Fayetteville Police Department Headquarters and fire station. He looks forward to the start of it’s construction on schedule.

Kyle supported presenting this issue to the voters in a special election because he understood the urgency of replacing the current facilities without delay. He voted YES on all 10 questions in that election because it is essential we provide our law enforcement officers with adequate space and security to serve their community safely. Kyle supported the land purchase at the corner of Porter Road and Deane Street because because it will increase the level of service for west Fayetteville residents, and he has participated in the design process to make sure the tax-payers get a facility that lives up to Fayetteville standards.

Council Member Smith has supported police & fire fighter pay raises each time it has come up, following through with the Mayor’s plan to bring the police and firefighter pay up to par with peer cities. He believes we should make every effort to attract and retain the best talent and ensure they are paid a living wage. Kyle wants every officer to be able to afford to raise their family here in the city they serve.

Kyle supports the creation of a Citizen Law Enforcement Oversight Board to support the goals of the President’s Task Force on 21st Century Policing. This committee will represent the diverse voices of our community and support our officers by:

  • facilitating communication between residents and the Fayetteville Police Department;
  • improving public awareness of law enforcement procedures;
  • providing a neutral venue for residents to feel comfortable reporting concerns; and
  • guiding data-driven efforts for continual improvement.

Support for Small Businesses & Workers Through the Pandemic

When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, Council Member Smith met with small business owners in our community to find out what their needs were.
They were overwhelmingly concerned for their employees and what loss of work would mean for them. That is the philosophy Kyle has carried into all of the public health conversations this summer.

Kyle has supported:

  • granting Mayor Jordan temporary emergency powers to respond quickly;
  • suspension of water service cut-offs and utility late fees to promote public sanitation and relieve financial stress on residents who have lost work;
  • the first mask mandate in Arkansas so our businesses could get back to work as safely as possible (less than a month later, the Governor followed along);
  • reinstating our City Board of Health to ensure Fayetteville’s response to the pandemic is based on trustworthy scientific advice and local conditions;
  • removing unnecessary regulations and expanding outdoor dining options to allow restaurants to maximize service in public spaces.

Council Member Smith supports neighborhood planning efforts that encourage appropriate new retail, services, and jobs close to where people live.

Increased tree preservation
Neighborhood Planning
Inclusive & Accessible Government

Local government works best when you’re involved.

As your City Council Member, Kyle works to keep you in the loop with what’s going on at City Hall. Ward 4 is the only part of town to have monthly meetings with elected officials and city staff because he has consistently supported resident requests to keep up the tradition even as other Council Members have wanted to reduce their frequency.

On the Nominating Committee, Kyle analyzed the membership of our city Boards and Commissions and worked to add Ward 4 residents to the Planning Commission, Parks & Recreation Advisory Board, and Active Transportation Committee. Recruiting our neighbors remains a top priority to ensuring west Fayetteville interests are represented in these key committees. Kyle sponsored the expansion of eligibility on city advisory boards to include all residents and I will continue working to expand your opportunities to participate in city decisions.

During the pandemic, we have seen many new faces in City Council meetings thanks to the new flexibility of participating remotely.
Council Member Smith supports maintaining options virtual attendance even after City Hall reopens so residents with limited mobility or families at home can continue to participate in conversations that impact them without having to give up hours and hours waiting through meetings. He will continue working with staff to increase opportunities for public input through the Speak Up Fayetteville portal, and through intentional outreach on major projects like the Cultural Arts Corridor and our new Fayetteville Police Department Headquarters.

Rank Choice Voting

This year, several of our municipal races have four candidates. This has become increasingly common in Fayetteville as people get more involved in local government.

Council Member Smith will present an ordinance for the 2022 elections to introduce instant run-offs by ranked-choice voting in municipal races so that every voter’s preference can be counted on election day.

Multiple-candidate races are great because they introduce more voices to the conversation; however, voters may find themselves in the unfortunate position of strategically voting for candidates that wouldn’t normally be their first choice. Ranked Choice Voting allows voters to weigh in on every candidate, so it discourages negative campaigning and produces representatives that represent the broadest consensus of voters. That’s very “Fayetteville.”

Run-off elections are expensive and Ranked Choice Voting is a more efficient use of public funds. Fayetteville has spent over $56,000 in taxpayer money on run-off elections in recent years while the exceptionally low voter turnout in run-off elections means that the final selection of our representatives is often made by very few voters.