Friday, April 22, 2011

This week on foot

This week the country is pondering sidewalks. First, the Senate Introduces a Narrower Bill for Wider Sidewalks (or at least, more funding for them). Then, there's some Some Orlando Neighborhoods Getting Sidewalks. But all this talk of sidewalks has some people wondering, Sidewalks are a neighborhood status symbol, but do they help the environment?

Meanwhile, it isn't sidewalks, but intersections in Honolulu that lead to Pedestrian Safety Concerns Rise After Newspaper Vendor Injured. And across the Pacific, it's another location, the Rincon Hill Intersection Nightmare For Pedestrians  that's leading to bad dreams in San Francisco.
Fortunately, there's plenty of work happening to address these types of pedestrian problems. The City of Spartanburg Introduces Reflect for Safety Monday , and in Nebraska a City Works to Improve Pedestrian Stadium Traffic . But not every message promoting pedestrian safety is being greeted with enthusiasm. In New York, some complain that “Don’t Be a Jerk” — The Wrong Message at the Wrong Time , and that the City's focus on bicycling "jerks" is unwarranted. Other people aren't waiting for officials to address pedestrian wrongs, and instead moving forward quickly to see that pedestrians receive justices, as in the Wrongful-death suit filed in PCH hit-and-run .

Other people are turning to art, not lawsuits, in an effort to improve walkability, as in one neighborhood where Profanity, slurs in pedestrian tunnel lead to art contest . Others ponder walkability from different perspectives, such as this blog post that considers A dog's eye view of what makes a walkable neighborhood , or this one evaluating Outdoor Cafes .

Yet, with all the positive attention being paid to walkable neighborhoods, one Streetsblog post wonders, Is the Realtors’ Survey Really a Ringing Endorsement of Smart Growth? Maybe not, but it does continue to show that people want to be able to walk in their communities.

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