ASK THE BORED: “The sidewalk mistake our cities need to stop making.”

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It took only six years for Dear Leader’s anchor-weighted City Hall to publicize agenda items and ensuing decisions from the Board of Public Works and Safety — and only one week for the feed to be propagandized into meaninglessness.

But this is New Gahania, after all, and now that the sun is out, can we have a conversation about sidewalks — or is it to be top-down communication only?

Like always?

Meanwhile, the newspaper’s coverage of Tuesday’s meeting reveals critical information: there’ll be a Taco Bell atop the strip mine called Summit Springs.

THE SIDEWALK MISTAKE OUR CITIES NEED TO STOP MAKING, by Rachel Quednau (Strong Towns)

 … Within a few months of the sidewalk being restored, it was closed off again and, months later, it’s still impassable. The situation is not just inconvenient, but dangerous — especially for the children, seniors and wheelchair users in my neighborhood.

Unfortunately, this type of treatment of sidewalks and pedestrians is the norm in my city and countless others. Here are a couple more examples of disregard for needs of people walking that I bet you’ve encountered in your town:

  • NO WARNING
  • PLAYING HOPSCOTCH
  • CAR SPACE OVER PEDESTRIAN SPACE
  • A SIMPLE SOLUTION

The conclusion:

This should be the case in all of our cities, and it’s not hard to achieve, either. Some signage that directs people, temporary wooden ramps where needed and generic barriers that protect pedestrians walking in the street (which most construction companies likely already have at their disposal anyway) are all that you need.

In order to accomplish this, we need our local leaders to step up and make it a legal requirement for construction projects to preserve or provide an alternative for pedestrian space, and we need development companies to take a few simple steps to put this requirement into action. It won’t involve much effort on the part of any of these entities — like I said, we’re talking about a few feet of sidewalk width — but the positive impact for anyone walking (and that includes people walking from their car into a business or residence) will be significant.

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