We write lots about pedestrian security right here, and it’s not as a result of we hate automobiles. It’s as a result of we typically consider that killing individuals is unhealthy, and it doesn’t by some means grow to be much less unhealthy in case you kill somebody together with your automobile as an alternative of a gun. Additionally, we wish to stay in a world the place you’ll be able to cross the road with out having to fret that you just’re going to die.
Sadly, we stay within the U.S., a rustic that doesn’t care how many individuals drivers kill yearly, and any time somebody will get hit, the blame is inevitably shifted away from the driving force as a result of how dare somebody be outdoors of a automobile in a spot the place a driver may have the ability to hit them. Add in our love of huge vehicles and SUVs, and it’s no surprise that street deaths on this nation proceed to worsen yearly.
And sure, the kind of automobiles on the street completely issues. It’s going to harm in case you get hit by a Corvette doing 35 mph, however it’s going to harm a complete lot extra in case you get hit by a Ram TRX going the identical pace. Moreover, there’s little or no likelihood that you just’ll be thrown below the Corvette when it hits you, whereas, with the TRX, there’s a great likelihood you’ll get thrown to the grown and run over.
However how can we realistically begin turning issues round? It will be nice to have the ability to magically remodel each U.S. city and metropolis right into a extremely walkable space with nice bike infrastructure and no must drive, however very similar to the second-generation Tesla Roadster, magic isn’t actual. Are we simply caught with increasingly individuals dying within the streets yearly? Not essentially.
Just lately, Ars Technica revealed an article by Kevin J. Krizek, a professor of sustainable planning and concrete design on the College of Colorado, targeted on answering precisely that query. One vital level is that pedestrian-friendly, well-designed cities resembling Amsterdam and Copenhagen haven’t at all times been that means simply because they’re outdated. They responded to grassroots actions that pressured metropolis officers to make modifications for the higher. At this time, many areas of these cities look nothing like they did within the Nineteen Seventies.
Giant-scale change is tough and takes time, however there are additionally quite a few issues that native governments can do to discourage using huge automobiles and promote pedestrian security:
- Creating prioritized parking areas nearer to shops for all types of mobility which might be slender or lower than 8 toes (2.5 meters) lengthy.
- Utilizing posts or bollards, which could be detachable, to restrict car entry to business areas and neighborhoods the place pedestrians, bikes, and smaller automobiles get precedence.
- Radically narrowing journey lanes on streets to power site visitors to decelerate and unlock area for wider sidewalks and bike lanes.
- Limiting or ending car entry to streets close to faculties and economically vibrant business districts, both completely or at high-use instances of day.
Would such modifications make issues much less handy for drivers? Positive. However you recognize what’s much more inconvenient? Getting hit by a automobile simply since you dared to cross the road to get to a restaurant.
There’s much more to the article, and we extremely advocate you take a look at the remainder of it right here.