Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Upcoming Walking Events

Designing for Pedestrian Safety FHWA and PBIC Free Webinar Series

This 8-part series on pedestrian design continues this month here. If you missed any of the previous sessions, past webinars are also archived at the site.

Part 4: Intersection Geometry
Presented by John LaPlante, Director of Traffic Engineering, T.Y. Lin International, Inc
and Keith Sinclair, Acting Assistant Division Administrator, FHWA Connecticut Division
Thursday, September 9 at 11:00 a.m. PST
Register at

Part 5: Signalized Intersections
Presented by Michael Moule, President, Livable Streets, Inc and Fred Ranck, FHWA Resource Center Safety Design Engineer
Monday, September 27 at 11:00 a.m. PST.
Register at

Part 6: Interchanges and Roundabouts
Presented by Fred Ranck, FHWA Resource Center Safety Design Engineer and Hillary Isebrands, FHWA Resource Center Safety Specialist
Tuesday, October 5 at 11:00 a.m. PST
Register at

Dates TBD:
Part 7: Pedestrians and Transit
Part 8: Road Diets
WalkSanDiego Luncheon Forum
September 17, 12:00-1:00 P.M.

A forum to exchange information and ideas on walkability in the San Diego Region. Guest Speakers: Cheryl Moder, Director of the San Diego Childhood Obesity Initiative and Supervisor Ron Roberts. Come enjoy a delicious lunch while discussing and learning about the struggles and solutions of childhood obesity in San Diego County. Location: 193 Horton Plaza, 1st Level (next to Victoria's Secret). Suggested Lunch Donation is $5.00 if you RSVP by September 13th; $7.00 at the door. Please RSVP to Cynthia Offenhauer.

Balboa Park II Walk 
September 18, 2010, 9:00 a.m.

Sponsored by WalkSanDiego. Meet at 6th Ave. and Laurel St., San Diego. This is the complimentary walk to the April 16 walk that discussed the 1915 Exposition; this walk will explore the legacy the 1935 Exposition had on Balboa Park and San Diego, with highlights of the buildings and activities the fair provided to San Diegans and visitors from around the world. As usual, some great historic photos from that time. A modest 4-mile walk on mostly flat terrain. The walks are open to everyone; they are free to WalkSanDiego members, with a suggested $5 donation for non-members. For further information, contact Dave Schumacher.
Pedestrians Count! Data, Modeling & Advocacy Workshop
October 3-5, Berkeley, CA

This workshop promotes pedestrian safety, public health, sustainable community modeling, and walking transportation with cutting edge research, latest best practices in pedestrian data collection and analysis, together with strategic advocacy planning. Statewide professionals, academic and community leaders will share their current and most promising work. California WALKS is a co-sponsor in this event. $50 Registration includes all three days. For registration and information go to
United Seniors of Oakland and Alameda County (USOAC) Older Pedestrian Safety Workshops
October 21, 12:30 pm-3:45 pm,  North Oakland Senior Center

FREE wokshop focusing on pedestrian safety and walking for older adults. To RSVP or for more information, contact Sister Ansar through email or at (510) 729-0851

And don't forget that International Walk to School Day is coming up on October 6!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Cool Ped Stuff # 9: Guerrilla Crosswalks

LA has DIY parking spaces and sharrows, Greece has Donkey Stickers, and as Treehugger reports Sao Paolo, Brazil now has its own band of guerrilla street improvers aimed at improving conditions for Brazilian pedestrians. Armed with white paint, they cleverly waited until no local traffic engineers would be paying attention (i.e. during World Cup games featuring Brazil) to paint crosswalks and "Slow Down" signs at dangerous intersections around the city.

I can almost feel the collective shudder as city attorneys simultaneously cringe at the liability issues this raises.

Photo courtesy Treehugger/Urban repair squad @ Apocalipse motorizado

Friday, September 3, 2010

Worldwide Walking: Panama, Nicaragua, Guatemala

I won't pretend that Latin America doesn't get a lot wrong when it comes to its pedestrian environment, but one thing I do appreciate about the region is its abundance of mixed-use streets. Unlike the here in the US, where we've spent decades working hard to ensure that pedestrians stay in their proper place (preferably, within a car) and vehicles have the road to themselves, pedestrians still have a valid place on many South and Central American streets. When done correctly (i.e., with an eye towards ensuring pedestrian safety), this can lead to a lively, jubiliant street atmosphere. I'll start with one of my all-time favorite pictures of pedestrians taking the street for themselves:

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Worldwide Walking: Brazil and El Salvador

A good streetscape doesn't just provide a pleasant place for a pedestrian to walk, it also helps contribute to a community's identity. It's one thing to walk down a nice street, it's another to walk down a nice street that also tells you something about the people who use it every day. Take these sidewalk treatments from Rio de Jainero. The patterns are so iconic that you don't need anything else to tell you what neighborhood you're in:

Then there's the small town of La Palma in El Salvador, made famous when the artist Ferrnando Llort made it his hub. Now there are dozens of factories in the village devoted to his style of art, which has spilled out onto the city's streets.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Worldwide Walking: Peru

You may have heard of Bogota's crossing mimes, but did you know that Lima had some too? Here they are helping pedestrians cross a street in the heart of the city:

Not that they're always essential, since Lima has some great pedestrian-only streets...