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This Is Why Cities That Go Automobile Free Are inclined to Keep Automobile Free

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The Times Square Alliance shows off a street art display, spelling out Car Free in street furniture, in Times Square in New York on April 21, 2016 as a testament to one of the first Car Free street spaces in recent history.

Picture: Timothy A. Clary/AFP (Getty Photographs)

Cities. They suck for vehicles, suck for driving and it seems their inhabitants are likely to have higher lives with out vehicles making noise, jamming every little thing up and polluting everywhere in the rattling place. When you’d like examples of the great that eliminating vehicles can really do for city facilities, take a look at this illuminating learn from Subsequent Metropolis.

The article highlights 4 main roads in 4 main cities, like San Francisco’s John F. Kennedy Drive, which first grew to become car-free seven days every week throughout the pandemic, and can stay that method because of a poll measure simply handed:

In April, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors handed a movement preserving JFK Drive closed to vehicles, together with 40 enhancements that may make the park extra accessible to disabled individuals, seniors and others.

The 1.5 mile avenue in San Francisco’s famed Golden Gate State Park was then the topic of dueling poll measures this month — Prop J would maintain vehicles out and Prop I’d reopen the road to motorized autos. Supporters of Prop I argued that completely closing the drive to vehicles would exclude individuals with disabilities from accessing the park. In the long run, voters handed Prop J with virtually 60% voting “sure” and rejected Prop I with over 60% voting “no.”

The purpose about individuals with disabilities being excluded together with vehicles is sort of weak when you think about that the JFK Promenade mission has already elevated the variety of ADA-compliant parking areas accessible to guests and put in a shuttle. It’s additionally made life safer for pedestrians:

Jodie Medeiros, who leads the pedestrian advocacy group Stroll San Francisco, says car-free motion at JFK is vital to defending pedestrians from automobile visitors. “For 2 years, we’ve got seen how a lot individuals not solely love however really want this car-free house,” she informed the San Francisco Chronicle. “Automobile-free JFK is all about our security.”

In keeping with San Francisco Recreation and Parks, visits to the park elevated 36% for the reason that closure, totalling practically 7 million visits, whereas over 90% of the streets within the park are nonetheless open to vehicles.

New York Metropolis’s thirty fourth Avenue — a.ok.a. Paseo Park — presents one other instance:

Began within the early days of the pandemic, the thirty fourth Avenue open avenue mission was organized as a part of New York Metropolis’s Open Streets initiative. Volunteers from the neighborhood put out visitors obstacles each morning and began organizing occasions, actions and video games. This yr, solely 20 miles of open streets stay within the metropolis, down from a excessive of 83 miles.

Town’s division of transportation says that the mission has decreased visitors violence involving pedestrians by a whopping 41.7%. A research performed by Streetsblog confirmed a dramatic discount in all automobile crashes.

Head to Subsequent Metropolis for the complete story. I briefly lived in Brooklyn earlier than the pandemic and didn’t convey my automobile with me as a result of it didn’t make a lot sense. I actually missed driving it, however in fact I’d not have needed to in Brooklyn, and the time I spent there in the end taught me for a wgap host of causes that I’m not a metropolis particular person. I additionally had the privilege to go away town if I needed. For the lives of people that can’t or don’t need to, these are good steps.

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