wjxt logo

Residents, delivery drivers say Jacksonville neighborhood needs more lighting

Safety concerns raised over visibility at night in Washington Heights area along Ken Knight Drive

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The Washington Heights area along Ken Knight Drive is too dark at night and needs more lighting, according to residents and delivery drivers.

They told News4Jax that when daylight transitions to nightfall, visibility becomes a safety concern.

“I come out every night and I walk my dogs,” said resident Alice Hartsfield. “To walk back and forth, you don’t know if you’re going to get hit by a car or if they even see you at all.”

“I drive past my house all the time because I can’t see,” said one resident who did not wish to be named. “It’s that dark.”

There are LED street lights present, but the light they give off doesn’t light up the neighborhood.

Ayesha Covington frequently delivers food in the area, but she told News4Jax that when she receives a food delivery order at night, there are times when she has wanted to reassign the delivery.

“It’s so dark,” Covington said. “Even when the lights are on at the residence address, you can’t see. A little fear jumps in my heart because I think someone could be hiding around one of those corners. I have to get out my vehicle. I lock it, but that won’t protect me.”

Parents and grandparents believe better lighting could change everything, including the perception that it is unsafe to drive or walk through the community at night.

“We need these lights for the sake of the kids. They want to go to the candy store and they can’t. A car will hit them,” said another resident who did not want to be named. “Can someone please put lights out here? That’s all we ask.”

News4Jax on Monday reached out to the office of Jacksonville City Councilwoman Brenda Priestly Jackson, who represents the area, to see if there’s something she could do to help improve the lighting, but her office assistant said she was tied up in meetings all day and would not be available for comment until Tuesday.

About the Author:

Award-winning broadcast and multimedia journalist with 20 years experience.