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Archive for the ‘pedestrian’ Category

By now you may have heard about an Alameda resident arrested for “dancing” in the street. Here is the police cam footage of the incident. The confrontation was far worse than what was described in those initial headlines, which gave the impression the man was drunk or jaywalking. It is especially disconcerting that the officer reprimands the gentleman for not being on the sidewalk — even though social distancing rules require persons exercising keep at least 6′ distance from pedestrians on the sidewalk.

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Closed Again

This is really getting annoying.

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Both the Richmond Bridge and Bay Bridge bike/ped paths routinely get closed — for no apparent reason and with absolutely no notification. I passed dozens of cyclists and joggers on the way to this closed gate.

State Law requires maximum feasible public access to the Bay. The BCDC needs to step in and begin enforcement action on Caltrans/MTC.

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Hurrah! Oakland and San Francisco Slow Streets are now on Google Maps (but no Alameda?).

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As Mayor of New York, Michael Bloomberg weaponized walking-while-black (otherwise known as stop-and-frisk).  This fact should normally preclude him from holding higher office, let alone earning the approval of Transportation4 America, a group which claims to speak on behalf of pedestrians. This is a shameful endorsement:

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Los Angeles sidewalks are so decrepit that it took a class-action ADA lawsuit to force the city to repair them. One thing the lawsuit didn’t do, unfortunately, is to speed up the bureaucracy. In order to repair sidewalks, the city said it first needed a full-blown EIR study:

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CEQA, of course, does not require EIR studies for sidewalk repair. This is classic bureaucratic sandbagging.

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This is what happens when road safety programs prioritize the wrong things:

Two years ago, Honolulu made it illegal — with few exceptions — to cross the street while fiddling with your phone or other device.

It was the first major city in the nation to enact a so-called “distracted walking” law. And since it went into effect, police have issued 232 citations under the law.

But has it actually made roads safer for pedestrians? That’s up for debate. Pedestrian fatalities on Oahu roads actually soared last year and don’t appear to have significantly dropped off in 2019.

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How we celebrate Christmas in America:

Thoroughbred Street will again welcome thousands in search of a little yuletide cheer. Residents have been decorating their homes with lights, yard figurines and more to delight visitors from across Southern California.

Rancho Cucamonga police will once again limit pedestrian access on what they expect to be the busiest nights of the season. According to the city’s website, portions of Thoroughbred and Jennet streets and Turquoise Avenue will be open to motorists only from 5 p.m. to 11 p.m. Friday-Sunday, Dec. 6-8, and Dec. 13-24, to emphasize pedestrian and vehicle safety.

The limits on pedestrian access are an expansion of an ordinance approved by the city in 2017 that police said improved traffic and cut wait times for motorists the final two weeks of the lights display.

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Over the years there have been some pretty bad pedestrian safety PSA’s. But this one from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is stupendously bad. No kid should ever have to worry about giant monster trucks blasting down a neighborhood street. What makes this ‘educational’ video especially bad is that the NHTSA has broad regulatory powers in this area, but chooses not to outlaw dangerous vehicles.

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Transport for London (TfL) has set an ambitious goal of raising bike/ped/transit mode share from 63% today to 80%. The pedestrian infrastructure will play a major role in getting an extra million walking trips per day. To achieve this goal, London has developed some interesting ideas as outlined in a new Pedestrian Plan.

Signal timing is being optimized so that pedestrians should not have to wait more than 40 seconds at a crossing. At key intersections, detectors will be used to count the number of people waiting to cross, and adjust the signal timing accordingly.

The most radical proposal, though, is ‘green-man authority’, or what Americans might call the reverse beg-button:

‘Green man’ authority is a technique where the traffic signals show a green signal for pedestrians continuously, until vehicular traffic is detected, at which time the pedestrians are stopped on a red signal, and vehicles are given a green light to proceed. This technique has previously only been used at two locations in London, on bus-only streets in Hounslow and Morden. TfL has identified the next 10 new locations where this approach will be set up, where it would significantly benefit pedestrians, with very little detriment to traffic.

One of the frustrating things as a pedestrian is to be standing around at a corner waiting for a signal to change, even though there are no cars coming. The Green-Man authority eliminates this frustration, by defaulting to green for pedestrians. Since the UK does not have jaywalking laws, the benefit of this technology for Londoners is minor, but it would be a major benefit in the US as a workaround against all the jaywalking enforcement nonsense.

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Healthy Streets Indicators

 

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If only the DMV required vision tests for getting a driver’s license. Then bicyclists and pedestrians wouldn’t have to wear hi-viz clothing whenever they went out…

 

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