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10973Re: Temporarily Carfree Portland

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  • Matt Hohmeister
    Jul 2, 2008
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      When I was in elementary school (in Philadelphia), the principal
      would, for before- and after-school hours, park his car dead center in
      an intersection next to the school to slow down traffic--he basically
      made the intersection into a traffic circle. He most likely did this
      with the blessing of the police, since his car was never towed.

      By the way, I take issue with temporary street closings, "school
      zones", and other such temporary measures. They're a way of saying
      that pedestrians are not welcome, unless it's during designated hours.
      If an intersection can be made into a traffic circle during school
      hours, why not make it into a permanent traffic circle? If the speed
      limit is lowered from 30 to 20 mph during school hours, why not just
      redesign the whole street for 20 mph and make it that way 24/7? If
      downtown streets can be closed for a whole week in December for the
      Winter Festival with no harm (and in fact, benefit) to all affected
      property owners, why not make it permanent? The only restaurant
      downtown with outdoor tables would probably love it.

      I've always thought that one easy way to transition to carfree is to
      simply make temporary street closures and lower speed limits permanent.

      BTW, here in Tallahassee (and I assume we're not alone in this),
      vehicles are used to block streets--and everything else. Sidewalks and
      bike lanes are seen as free-for-all parking, and the police not only
      don't enforce anything, but they do it themselves.

      --- In carfree_cities@yahoogroups.com, "J.H. Crawford" <mailbox@...>
      > This message came in recently.
      > At 2008-06-30 20:54, you wrote:
      > >Hello,
      > >
      > >I thought you might enjoy the revelation that cars are in fact good
      > >for something — blocking off a street so that citizens can reclaim it!
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