Paging Irv Stumler, Bob Caesar and Padgett Inc: Here are three ways to make streets safer for pedestrians.

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Rather keeping New Albany fast and dangerous, perhaps there’s a better way.

#SLOWTHECARS IS OUR CAMPAIGN TO MAKE OUR STREETS SAFE AND PROSPEROUS.

Strong Towns advocates for financial solvency and productive land use in American cities. Places that are built for people, using traditional development patterns, can help us achieve both of those goals. On the other hand, neighborhood streets with wide lanes, huge clearance zones and other dangerous design features cause thousands of pedestrian and car passenger deaths every year. Dangerous roads do not make productive use of our land or our lives. Furthermore, they depress investment in our cities by making our neighborhoods less pleasant places to be.

People are the indicator species of success. We know that pedestrian-friendly neighborhoods are more economically productive, healthier and safer. We need to build places where people want to be.

To be specific ..

3 WAYS TO MAKE STREETS SAFER FOR PEDESTRIANS, by Adam Porr

… As someone whose brain has been trained for decades that streets are for cars only, the persistent presence of pedestrians triggers a sympathetic nervous system response that is stressful to say the least. Still, I love it. Pedestrian activity is an indicator of vibrant neighborhoods and a healthy local economy, and upon my return to Columbus, Ohio in a few months I hope to do whatever I can to duplicate this environment. But how can we bridge the dangerous gap between the current culture and one in which pedestrians feel safe to be in the street and drivers are attentive and courteous enough to allow this to happen? I’d like to discuss three strategies that may help.

1. ENCOURAGE PEDESTRIAN STRENGTH IN NUMBERS
2. FORCE DRIVERS TO WAKE UP
3. PRESERVE AND EXPAND PEDESTRIAN PROTECTIONS

… Perhaps there are more people who, like me, will learn how enjoyable and economically productive pedestrian-friendly environments can be and carry the torch back to their own hometowns!

Conversely, perhaps you live in a bastion of ignorance like New Albany.

I’d like to renew the challenge I’ve offered numerous times in the past (though never accepted), as directed not merely to predictable reactionaries like Stumler, Caesar and the heavy trucking lobby, but also to people like Jeff Gahan, Terry Cody and Warren Nash.

Come out and walk with me. Not just around the block, but up and down one of our arterial one-way streets. See what it feels like.

Experience the thrills of auto-centrism in your own shoes. I guarantee enlightenment.

Have these folks always been scared of the truth, or is it just simple ignorance?

Maybe this final question is best left unanswered. Haven’t they done enough to persevere in doing nothing, already?

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