From Scary Streets to Safe Systems

On Halloween, kids 17 and under are 3X more likely to die in a traffic accident than any other day of the year—a trend that underscores how badly designed US cities are for pedestrians and cyclists in general.
US pedestrians are dying at twice the rate of those in other industrialized nations, write Alex Engel and Becca Freer of NACTO, an association of North American cities and transit agencies.
Often, policies and guidance victim-blame instead of rethinking problematic policies and designs.  
The Safe Systems offers an alternative approach, advising city planners and policymakers to:

  • Bring down speed limits
  • Approach street design with pedestrians and cyclists in mind
  • Rewrite the manual on road signs, signals, and markings

“And there are benefits to this work beyond saving lives — safer streets will unlock opportunities in cities, making them better places to live for more people,” the authors note.
Bloomberg (commentary)

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