In New Albany, Jeff Gahan still is “cowering before the demands of drivers,” but “more and more cities are deciding to wrest control of their streets back from the tyranny of the automobile.”

Thanks, B.

Jeff Speck devised a plan for downtown street grid reform. It was emasculated by Deaf Gahan’s anointed and indemnified cleaver-wielding assassins at HWC Engineering. Gahan declared victory and moved to the next opportunity to bundle campaign finance.

In New Albany and Florida, bicyclists and pedestrians remain at risk when planners refuse the change car-centric nature of the street grid.

Jeff Gahan’s de-Specked two-way street reversion led HWC Engineering to tack on bike and pedestrian infrastructure without changing the car-centric nature of the state’s transportation planning.

Actually, almost all the biking infrastructure suggested by Speck was removed amid gleeful cheering by the irresolute likes of CM Greg Phipps (has he ever actually been on a bicycle?), but the analogy holds.

The two-way street grid project has not been transformative because Gahan didn’t allow it to be …

There’s plenty of cowering and cowardice in New Albany. Maybe — just maybe — in 2019 we can start the process of changing the retrograde default into a paradigm that looks forward.


Cars Are Ruining Our Cities, by Justin Gillis and Hal Harvey (New York Times)

(Mr. Gillis is working on a book about climate change. Mr. Harvey is the chief executive of the research firm Energy Innovation.)

SAN FRANCISCO — We might be living through a new age of miracles. Last month, Los Angeles decided against adding lanes to a freeway, an unexpected move in a city that has mistakenly thought for years that more lanes mean fewer traffic jams.

Shortly before that, Germany’s highest court ruled that diesel cars could be banned from city centers to clean up the air. Mind you, Germany is the land where diesel technology was invented …

 … As we write these words, we can sense the bile rising in some drivers. Americans have such a sense of entitlement about cars that any attempt to limit them can provoke a fight, as New York has discovered.

Yet the truth is that people who drive into a crowded city are imposing costs on others. They include not just reduced mobility for everyone and degraded public space, but serious health costs …

The bottom line?

The bottom line is that the decision to turn our public streets so completely over to the automobile, as sensible as it might have seemed decades ago, nearly wrecked the quality of life in our cities.