Asbury Park is working on making city streets and sidewalks great public places, as well as focusing on sustainable mobility: walking, riding bicycles, scooters, and promoting other alternative mobility options, plus public transit.
Gil Penalosa, is founder of 8-80 Cities, grounded on the concept that we can create “vibrant cities with healthy communities where all people can live happier, regardless of age, gender, ability, or socio-economic or ethnic status.”
“The 8 to 80 litmus test involves imagining a public space, but especially a busy city street or intersection, and asking whether it is suitable for young and old alike.”
(Gil’s brother Enrique Penalosa, also a well-known urbanist, was re-elected mayor of Bogota Colombia in 2015 for the 2016–2019 term. While embroiled in some recent academic controversy, he has also been influential in making major improvements for people and places in that city during his 2 separate terms as mayor up to the present, and in other cities elsewhere in the world between terms.)
The 8 to 80 Problem: Designing Cities for Young and Old
How can cities create neighborhoods that work well for all generations?
“…in many aging societies, where the proportion of seniors will grow as much as four-fold over the next two decades, public space improvements alone won’t make large urban areas, especially car-dependent suburbs, more suitable to the needs of older residents. Indeed, one of the most difficult questions facing urban areas is how they will go about making themselves more age-friendly.”
Many of those who follow our media are people who drive cars, they also ride bikes or scooters, and they’re advocates for alternative transportation for climate, health and equity reasons. But can we admit that we don’t really get the “share the road” relationship between drivers of automotive vehicles and other road users – bike riders in particular? As a bike commuter and avid cyclist, and a driver, it’s hard for me to figure out on a daily basis. Cycling Savvy explains it for us.
Did History & Law Really Intend For Cyclists To Ride Far To The Right?
Far too many cyclists, motorists and enforcement officers believe that cyclists need to ride as far to the right as possible, in order to allow a motorist to use the same lane. Neither history nor law support this.
The video (in the link below) illustrates the safety concerns of cyclists using the road, and how the bicyclist’s position on the roadway can dramatically increase or decrease the most common crash types.
Since the 1920s we’ve been conditioned to believe that roads are designed for cars (they weren’t). Traffic congestion and vehicular fatalities, plus the effects on health and climate has shown city leaders all over the world the need to modify/eliminate the use of motor vehicles, and build better infrastructure for bikes, walking and other modes of transit.
Enter scooters. We know that there’s a need for alternatives to driving, and scooter share is being introduced successfully as legitimate micro-mobility. Although the rules in most cities require them to be ridden on the street, why are scooter riders on sidewalks?
Would you let your 10-year-old ride a bike or a scooter on a street with vehicular traffic moving at 25mph, 35mph, 45mph? We need to design streets that are are safe for an 8-year-old to an 80-year-old. Let’s use that standard. Painted bike lanes are a start, but paint doesn’t protect. Until we have protected bike/scooter lanes everywhere (and we will!) we need to continue to work on reducing/eliminating the need to drive in our city by providing as many alternative transportation options as possible #toomanycars, and meanwhile seriously slow vehicle speeds! #slowthecars.
Most scooter riders using the sidewalk are afraid of cars, new survey shows
Read the surprising history (and see amazing photos!) about when the US was a world leader in bike lanes. In the years before cars took over bike super-highways, cycle paths, and sidepaths enabled people to reach destinations in Rochester, Chicago, Minneapolis, New York (in particular, Coney Island), New Jersey, and Los Angeles.
Now cities all over the US like Asbury Park, are acknowledging the need to reduce/eliminate the use of automobiles, and rebuilding infrastructure for bikes and other micro-mobility.
In 1900, Los Angeles had a bike highway — and the US was a world leader in bike lanes
“The success of the Coney Island Cycle Path spurred cyclists in Upstate New York to push for local governments to build similar bike-specific routes that would run alongside roads, funded by tolls.
The idea was that by building these relatively smooth, sometimes paved paths — often called “sidepaths” — next to rutted country roads, cyclists would demonstrate the benefits of road investment to teamsters and farmers, who’d then support the campaign for paved roads in general.
These routes were distinct from sidewalks and were intended specifically to segregate bikes from horse and carriage traffic with a few feet of grass or other buffer. More than anything, they resemble today’s protected bike lanes, which are set off from roads with bollards, parked cars, or other physical barriers.”
Bicyclist injuries and deaths occur when a driver opens the door into the path of person on a bike, either causing the person on the bike to hit the door, or forcing her into the traffic lane. Learn to do it here.
This simple change in the way you get out of your car can save lives — of cyclists, drivers and passengers. Here’s how to do it, and why it’s so effective.
By Tanya Mohn Oct. 5, 2018
“…it works like this: When you are about to exit the car, you reach across your body for the door handle with your far or opposite hand. This action forces you to turn toward the side view mirror, out and then back over your shoulder to be sure a bicyclist is not coming from behind. Only then do you slowly open the door.”
Would this be a revolution in Asbury Park? “We need more parking!” is the familiar refrain. The fact is that we can’t create more parking. We have #toomanycars. The best ways to reduce the use of, and need for cars in any city is to reduce the availability of parking, and make it less desirable to drive. The solution is to make it more desirable to use alternative transportation, walk or bike. “Talkin’ ’bout a revolution…”
A Modest Proposal to Eliminate 11,000 Urban Parking Spots
Feargus O’Sullivan Mar 29, 2019
Amsterdam plans to systematically strip its center of parking spaces in the coming years, making way for bike lanes, sidewalks, and more trees.
This week, Amsterdam is taking its reputation for pro-bike, anti-car polices one step further by announcing that it will systematically strip its inner city of parking spaces.
Amsterdam transit commissioner Sharon Dijksma announced Thursday that starting this summer, the city plans to reduce the number of people permitted to park in the city core by around 1,500 per year. These people already require a permit to access a specific space (and the cost for that permit will also rise), and so by reducing these permits steadily in number, the city will also remove up to 11,200 parking spaces from its streets by the end of 2025.
The cleared spaces won’t be left empty, however. As room for cars is removed, it will be replaced by trees, bike parking, and wider sidewalks, allowing Amsterdammers to instantly see and feel the benefits of what will still be a fairly controversial policy among drivers.
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
Highlights from August 22, 2018 City Council Meeting
“…proposed improvements include an
upgrade of the traffic signal at Third Avenue and Pine Street to include walk signals, 6 neighborhood
roundabouts, 4 vehicle activated traffic calming signs, and bike lanes…”