People are killed every day while walking, even in crosswalks, and with the right-of-way. The narrative we hear too often is that they were “distracted walkers” or officer’s reports stating that the person was “hit by a car* while walking outside the crosswalk …” Do we realize yet that the media is presenting “facts” in such a way as to dehumanize and exonerate drivers*, while blaming victims for their deaths? #slowthecars #toomanycars While lawmakers are still bumbling through legislation to reduce the numbers of cars on city streets all over the US, what can WE do about it in Asbury Park?
Americans are walking less, but the number of people killed by drivers while walking keeps going up. Unsurprisingly, these deaths happen more in poor neighborhoods of color.
Every year, the amount of time Americans spend walking declines. Driving, on the other hand, has slightly but steadily risen in popularity since 2008. During that period, the number of pedestrians killed by people in cars has skyrocketed.
As driving remains as a top mode of transportation in the U.S., pedestrians are increasingly at risk of injury and death — What are we doing about it? Will Asbury Park experience “bikelash” for additional bike lanes, complaints from drivers for possible slower, calmed traffic? Or will residents and visitors realize that Asbury Park is becoming a model of a city that builds infrastructure to save lives, and improve quality of life for everyone…?
Report: Pedestrian deaths continue decade-long climb
Jason Plautz January 23, 2018
A new report from Smart Growth America found there were 12,057 pedestrian deaths in 2016 and 2017 combined (6,080 and 5,977 deaths, respectively), the two highest totals on record since 1990.
The threat has been rising since a low of 4,109 deaths in 2009, a more than 35% increase. Over the past decade, pedestrian fatalities have happened at a rate of 13 per day, according to the report, which drew data from the federal Fatality Analysis Reporting System.
As new mobility options like shared bikes and scooters expand in cities, advocates warn that not enough is being done to design roads that can accommodate the full variety of travelers, leaving sidewalks and bike lanes crowded.
That’s especially pronounced in low-income and minority neighborhoods, which traditionally see less infrastructure investment. African Americans and American Indians were more likely to be at risk as pedestrians. Charles Brown, a researcher at Rutgers University’s Alan M. Voorhees Transportation Center, said that reflects the higher share of minority residents who have to walk to work, even in neighborhoods with “a lack of sidewalks and overall connectivity” and a “lack of complete streets.”
It was a huge success: Parking spots are now bike lanes, transit is fast and easy, and the streets (and local businesses) are full of people.
If you decide to drive in downtown Oslo, be forewarned: You won’t be able to park on the street. By the beginning of this year, the city finished removing more than 700 parking spots–replacing them with bike lanes, plants, tiny parks, and benches–as a major step toward a vision of a car-free city center.
The changes, unsurprisingly, have been met with some resistance, both from car owners and businesses. But while business owners initially worried about the city creating a ghost town that no one would visit, the opposite seems to be true; as in other cities that have converted some streets to pedestrian-only areas, the areas in Oslo that have been pedestrianized are some of the most popular parts of the city, Marcussen says. Last fall, after hundreds of parking spots had been removed, the city found that it had 10% more pedestrians in the center than the year before. “So that is telling me that we are doing something right,” she says.
Read about it!
In some states the DOT may show a lack vision in implementation of infrastructure for modes of transportation other than cars. Iowa is different. Check out the Iowa DOT video explaining the benefits of a road diet. Yes, Asbury Park will have a road diet on Main Street when the NJDOT project is completed. And yes, Asbury Park, as it’s been pointed out to us again and again is “unique and different”, and “we’re a city not a town”, etc. Whatever our distinctions, a road diet can work to reduce crashes and improve traffic flow with examples on thoroughfares all over the United States. Even the police and fire chiefs in the video admit that it works. *Our only objection is that the police chief refers to “accidents”, rather than the preferred, and accurate term “crashes”.
Iowa DOT Helps Educate Citizens on the Value of a Road Diet
January 23, 2019
To give credit where credit is due: The Iowa DOT—which we’ve acknowledged before for forward thinking—clearly has some people who get the difference between how a high-speed road should function and how an urban street should function. But not just that: they’re also helping educate Iowans about that difference, with this video illustrating the benefits of a 4-to-3 lane conversion, a common type of road diet which turns a 4-lane street into a 2-lane street with a center turn lane—almost always slowing traffic and improving safety and economic vitality alike.
Watch the video!
Between 2008 and 2017 drivers struck and killed 49,340 people who were walking on streets all across the United States. That’s more than 13 people per day, or one person every hour and 46 minutes. The last two years on record (2016 and 2017) were the most deadly years for people killed by drivers while walking since 1990.
A frightening report just came out from NJ.com ranking the deadliest N.J. counties for traffic accidents, ranked from least to most.
It’s time to accept that we are at #peakcar, and people driving vehicles and speeding kills people walking and on bikes. #slowthecars.
Take a look at the report from Smart Growth America , and join the webinar on Thursday, January 24th at 2:30pm EST.
Too many Americans are being struck and killed by the drivers of cars, trucks, and SUVs while walking. Dangerous by Design 2019, released today, chronicles the preventable epidemic of pedestrian fatalities, which have been steadily increasing in recent years, even as traffic fatalities overall have been decreasing.
Dangerous by Design 2019 takes a closer look at this alarming epidemic.
We can and must do more to reduce the number of people who die while walking every day on our roadways. For too long we have disregarded this problem by prioritizing moving cars at high speeds over safety for everyone. It’s past time for that to change. Protecting the safety of all people who use the street—especially the people most vulnerable to being struck and killed—needs to be a higher priority for policymakers, and this priority must be reflected in the decisions we make about how to fund, design, operate, maintain, and measure the success of our roads.
In the past decade, the number of people struck and killed while walking increased by 35 percent. Though fatalities decreased ever so slightly in 2017, the last two years on record (2016 and 2017) were the most deadly years for people killed by drivers while walking since 1990.
Read more about it:
Housing, and infrastructure for walking and biking are interrelated. APCSC believes that Asbury Park is working effectively on both.
“…access could improve even more as the city builds on its ambitious Minneapolis 2040 plan, a comprehensive effort to curb the influence of single-family zoning and add more housing density…protected infrastructure matters too. If people don’t feel safe on their bikes, they’re not going to take them.”
What Cities Are Getting Wrong About Public Transportation
ANDREW SMALL JAN 17, 2019
Cities could get more people walking, biking, and riding transit, according to a new report, if they just know where to look for improvement.
Despite the tireless efforts of transit planners, bike-lane boosters, and other actors in the mobility arena, the mode-share percentages don’t seem to budge much in the any given growing city as they add more people, despite massive investments in transit infrastructure.
Asbury Park is experiencing a time of change. Some call it a Renaissance, some call renewal, or revitalization. Whatever the adjectives, we believe that Asbury Park is working on becoming a city that puts people first. A city that is striving to make streets safe, and housing equitable. A city that wants tomake it possible for children to attain the best education, and possible for residents to maintain homes and businesses. Asbury Park has had it’s dark times. But with the commitment of the good citizens of the city, and Mayor and City Council exhibiting responsible, good governance we are making great strides. ”
“If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward.”
The Crisis in America’s Cities
Martin Luther King Jr. on what sparked the violent urban riots of the “long hot summer” of 1967
Hey guys. Can you admit that you’re influenced by car ads? The automotive industry thinks you are. Ads targeting men have been working since the 1920s when manufacturers realized that just touting the engineering of a car wasn’t working as well to sell them. They gradually began to sexualize ads (and the cars themselves), and in doing so, they realized that they were successful appealing to a male stereotype. Car ads have been working and we can see the result in the way roads have been designed, and the prevalence traffic and crashes.
BBC’s Spoof Ads Slam Automobiles as Man-Wombs, Winkies, Silly-Little-Me-Wagons
Carlton Reid Jan 19, 2019
For the multi-billion-dollar automobile industry a car for the typical man, imagines Barker channeling thousands of automobile adverts, has to be “sleek, fast, hard … imposing to other men.”
His Serious Car advert – “All Car, All Man, All Man Car. Car of Man. Manly car. Man. Men. Me” – appeared in the first series of The Damien Slash Mixtape, broadcast in 2017, and in the second series has now been joined by a version spoofing muscular off-road motor vehicles that never leave asphalt:
“It was observing my relationship with driving that gave me the idea for the joke. I noticed the tragic puffed-up fantasy identity I was adopting as I was driving, where does it come from? I thought how absurd it was to generate a sense of masculinity from a glorified cart, how absurd our relationship is with these enormous, asinine, polluting machines that have become a form of clothing as much as they are a form of transport.”
Nevertheless, he admits to having a “car addiction.”
He said: “I own two classic 5-liter V8s, for maximum self-loathing.”
Read more and watch:
Cities are at peak car. Traffic congestion and crashes are a constant issue. It’s been shown over and over that adding bike lanes (and walking infrastructure) is a cheap and easy fix in large cities like Toronto, and in small cities it’s even easier. Let’s commit to bike infrastructure. We’ll patiently wait for naysayers and car addicts to calm down as traffic eases and crashes are reduced.
Bike lanes prove that transportation solutions can be cheap and effective
By EDWARD KEENANStar Columnist
Fri., Jan. 11, 2019
Read about it…