TMC is an independent, primarily volunteer organization that relies on ad revenue to cover its operating costs. Please consider whitelisting TMC on your ad blocker or making a Paypal contribution here: paypal.me/SupportTMC

Infrastructure should promote more walking and less driving

Discussion in 'Energy, Environment, and Policy' started by anticitizen13.7, Mar 6, 2013.

  1. anticitizen13.7

    anticitizen13.7 Enemy of the Status Quo

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2012
    Messages:
    2,545
    Location:
    United States
    I am not a city person. When I was younger, I lived and worked in a city for a couple years, and after awhile, I got sick of the noise, constant bright lights at night, the diesel fumes, mentally ill homeless people shouting things at me, and litter everywhere. I did like being able to walk everywhere and take public transit.

    Looking for green space, I moved to an older, somewhat dense suburb, where most of my commercial needs like Post Office, gardening supplies, and food are still within a 1 mi radius or even less. However, there are some places that I like to go, like specialty food stores, that are in shopping centers that cannot be safely reached except by automobile. Lots of roads and developments seem to have been built with no regards to people who don't want to drive. The assumption is that every family has 2 or more cars now. The newest developments built within the past 20-30 years are basically "green islands" that require denizens to have automobiles:cursing:

    I like the luxury of owning an automobile, and I kind of need one if I want to be able to visit friends and family who live on "green islands" or in distant towns, but I hate the fact that there is so much infrastructure that makes a car necessary for modern life's basics. I suppose it wouldn't be so bad if local governments built sidewalks alongside roads, and forced developers to build sidewalks at new development sites, but there seems to be little appetite for it when everyone has a car.
     
  2. neroden

    neroden Happy Model S Owner

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2011
    Messages:
    3,529
    Location:
    Ithaca, NY, USA
    "Complete streets" laws are basically supposed to require sidewalks with all road construction or major alteration. (There's leeway for woonerfs and suchlike.) Some places have passed such laws. Others haven't. Discuss with your local politicos.

    This is likely to also require changing the sidewalk maintenance laws -- something currently being considered in the jurisdictions in my locality. For stupid historical reasons, many cities treat road maintenance as something to be done with tax money and professionals, but require individual homeowners to pay for sidewalk maintenance (and often even requiring them to perform it) -- causing the property owners to not want sidewalks. Sidewalks need to be treated as an integral part of the road and maintained by the city (or county, etc.) This requires a change in approach and a (small) increase in taxes to pay for the sidewalk plowing, etc.
     

Share This Page