“I want you to panic… I want you to act as you would in a crisis. I want you to act as if our house is on fire. Because it is.” Greta Thunberg, Jan 24, 2019
I have been watching the leaders of my hometown of Bloomington, Indiana claim a concern for climate and equity, create GHG inventories, action plans, and transportation plans, and then go on with business-as-usual, or worse, as if just writing the documents was enough. I’m frightened to find that some of the most progressive cities in the U.S. are behaving similarly, like Portland, Eugene, and Los Angeles.
Let’s be honest, our transportation system in the US is an unjust, unsustainable, inequitable system that must change. It is car-centric, it kills 40,000 people annually, it is most cities’ largest GHG producer, it is a massive burden on the poor, and it wrongly prioritizes cars over transit because the ruling class prefers them. Continue reading “Bad Transportation Planning in a Time of Crisis – Bloomington, IN.”
When it became illegal to overtly exclude people of color from purchasing neighborhood homes, the powers-that-be excluded people more subtly using land-use codes and neighborhood covenants like single-family residential zones, minimum lot sizes, and minimum square footage. In transportation, two extensively-used measures that exclude are v/c (volume/capacity) and LOS (Level-of-Service; derived directly from v/c).
The traffic engineering standard of v/c has been used for decades to describe how well a road can handle its traffic, and to determine when a road needs more lanes. As v (actual traffic volume) approaches c (maximum volume at capacity) and v/c nears the value of 1, the road congests. The practice is to reduce v/c below a specified maximum value (an “engineering standard”) by increasing the road capacity “c” with added lanes until v/c is below the standard, and will stay below it for the next 20 years. Continue reading “Transportation’s Exclusionary Measure “v/c” (volume/capacity) currently means vehicles/color.”
It is time. It is time for pedestrians to have a real, regulatory, and instructive sign of their own at midblock crosswalks that drivers recognize and heed. A Yield-to-Pedestrians sign.
Midblock crosswalks are often just markings on the pavement, and drivers don’t see them until they are on top of them.
Of course, there are plenty of drivers that are unaware they are required to yield to pedestrians, and some that are simply uninterested in yielding. Compliance is abysmal, and that is why pedestrians get hit — and both compliance and injuries get worse with higher-speed roads. Continue reading “Midblock Pedestrian Crosswalks – It’s Time for a Sign”