Saturday, October 2, 2010
Friday, August 27, 2010
The recent acrimony displayed by some of the Seattle Times' columnists on the issues of increasing transportation choices for Seattlites is appalling.
The development of a special tax improvement district (TID) should not be misleadingly framed as 'police versus pedestrians' argument.TID's are not police versus peds, it is not bikes versus cars, this TID is Seattle united against congestion and pollution and for increasing public liveability. That Seattle would even consider a TID is our city admitting we have a problem with pedestrian and cyclist unfriendly streetscapes that can be improved.
Tax improvement districts that earmark funds for active transportation projects have been cleared by the governor and state legislature as appropriate and timely to fund needed projects that drives cities out from under the toxic cloud of our current transportation model.
At the Federal level, the US Department of Transportation has also shifted official federal policy. New transportation directives REQUIRE cities and states to more equitably treat all modes of transportation, not just private motoring and freight, in the development of transportation infrastructure.
State and federal transportation officials endorse the shift in the transportation modality of the country, SDOT has positive plans for Seattle. Why are Seattlites are stuck sucking on the tailpipe of provincialist denial?
Joni Balter's column ignores the benefits Seattle or any city can reap for its citizens quality of life from encouraging a shift towards more active transportation. A move towards making it easier for Seattlites to get around under their own power and enjoy outdoor activities along public thoroughfares will have positive effects on:
Senior mobility, endemic obesity, childhood onset diabetes, air quality, water pollution in the sound (the largest polluter of Puget Sound is the private automobile), and intangible increases in quality of life. In the long run this shift to a liveable city will pay back to Seattle thru decreases in expenditures related to these serious and chronic social ills.
This is not a question of police or pedestrians. Seattle cannot continue the provincial denial of how to create a more liveable, walkable, active Seattle. This special tax improvement district should be met with laudatory approval by the Seattle Times and its columnists, not derision.
Monday, August 23, 2010
Wednesday, August 18, 2010
The road rechannelization project along 125th is part of a voter-supported bridging-the-gap-commitment to public livability that predates the current mayor. Road diets have not been shown to “halve the traffic flow” — city studies of the roughly two dozen road-dieted corridors show no such ill effects.
Road rechannelizations are a net positive for all road users by improving overall road safety. A pedestrian crossing at 125th is currently tenuous, but the city cannot stripe an unregulated crosswalk across 125th because of the motor-vehicle traffic. The city has had to remove crosswalks from four-lane roads without signal lights because motorists made these road configurations unsafe.
Encouraging active transportation in walkable, bikeable neighborhoods has far-reaching positive effects on public health, senior independence, obesity and child-onset diabetes in addition to widely recognized positive environmental impacts.
This street divides the neighborhood in its current configuration. The city and voters are committed to rebuilding livable neighborhoods. A road rechannelization of 125th is merited for public safety. Motorists don’t have carte blanche to speed recklessly down a four-lane road just because it leads to an interstate!
This is not a specious “bikes-vs.-cars” discussion and I hope Brodeur appraises herself of the actual results when the city works to improve road safety for all, not just the Mario Andrettis and their commute.
It’s time to look beyond the windshield."
Sunday, April 11, 2010
Monday, April 5, 2010
Preride yesterday morning. Bacon under the broiler, hashbrowns and eggs in the cast-iron skillet. Bacon is a non-addictive vice, yet tough to eliminate totally from ones life without a religious dietary prohibition. Eating bacon is a guilty pleasure.