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Re: [carfree_cities] Traffic Lights (default red for road traffic)

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  • Roy Preston
    ... Please do, Tony. I am. Roy P
    Message 1 of 11 , Jul 5, 2001
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      >I can say more about this
      >if anyone is interested.

      Please do, Tony. I am.

      Roy P
    • Tony Brewer
      ... then ... Transport, ... in ... traffic ... This ... the ... but ... should ... say ... I could write a book about SaferCity, but here are a few quick
      Message 2 of 11 , Jul 9, 2001
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        > > Anyone come across plans for traffic lights designed to stand at default
        > red
        > > for traffic on the road? The motorist doesn't actually press a "drive"
        > > button. When a vehicle is detected at the lights there is a pause and
        then
        > > the lights turn to green to let them through otherwise pedestrians and
        > > cycles, on a cycle route crossing at this point, can continue through on
        > > what will be for them, default green).
        > >
        > > For local authorities to introduce this - as several plan to do -
        > permission
        > > has to be obtained for a specific scheme from the Department of
        Transport,
        > > Local Government and the Regions. I understand why Whitehall want to be
        in
        > > charge of such detail. If the pedestrian and cycling population -
        > especially
        > > the young - of a local authority area get used to default green on
        traffic
        > > lights for them and then go somewhere else, there could be problems!
        This
        > is
        > > a change that should occur widely - but carefully.
        > >
        > > Anyone else know about plans for such lights?
        >
        > This was considered in Gloucester as part of the SaferCity* project. In
        the
        > end, it didn't happen and instead of replacing a set of life-expired
        > pedestrian lights two zebra crossings were provided for the same cost or
        > less.
        >
        > These new traffic lights might sound good for pedestrians and cyclists,
        but
        > I regard them as being not much better than the traditional ones. Zebra
        > crossings are the best way to give priority to pedestrians and there
        should
        > be versions of these for cyclists.
        >
        > * A 5-year, £1 million per year road safety scheme just finished. I can
        say
        > more about this if anyone is interested.

        I could write a book about SaferCity, but here are a few quick thoughts:

        * Gloucester has population just over 100,000
        * The city won national competition for funding
        * £1 million a year for 5 years is many times usual road safety budget
        * Money used for capital schemes only
        * If road casualties not reduced by 33% money must be re-paid
        * Target looks likely to be met
        * Most of money spent on correcting past "cars uber alles" policy
        * Money targetted on previous accident blackspot areas
        * Physical traffic-calming main weapon to reduce vehicle speeds
        * Little innovation shown despite promises
        * Lots of humps, cushions, junction tables and chicanes
        * Most major roads not treated and still unsafe for non-motorists
        * Many quiet accident-free streets have unnecessary humps
        * Areas with largest car-ownership (newer suburbs) omitted
        * Far too few rat-run roads closed to through traffic
        * Some roads have reduced speed limits but not enough
        * Many parts of city now an obstacle course for cyclists
        * Lots of new cycle lanes but most too narrow and uncomfortable
        * Guidelines on cycle provision consistently broken
        * Views of local cyclists almost always disregarded
        * Young girl knocked down and killed on 'treated' road = project failed IMO
        * Problem of how to pay for maintenance after scheme ends
        * Scheme not part of wider traffic reduction / modal shift strategy

        Conclusion: it could have been a lot better!

        Tony B.
      • Louis-Luc
        ... This proves cycle paths or lanes are not necessarily good for cycling in general. Bicycle lanes must be seen as an alternative for cyclists, so cyclists
        Message 3 of 11 , Jul 9, 2001
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          > * Many parts of city now an obstacle course for cyclists
          > * Lots of new cycle lanes but most too narrow and uncomfortable

          This proves cycle paths or lanes are not necessarily good for cycling in
          general.

          Bicycle lanes must be seen as an alternative for cyclists, so cyclists can
          decide to continue to ride in a normal traffic lane without feeling danger.

          Here in Vaudreuil, they removed the cycle lane on part of the main street
          (where shops are), and they're building a better one on a parallel quiet
          street. So 2 things here: they encourage cyclists not to ride main street,
          and cyclists can comfortably ride a quiet street without a bike path, so the
          path there is unnecessary. So what Vaudreuil cyclists should do is continue
          to ride main street, use a normal traffic lane and force motorists to accept
          cyclists as part of traffic.

          What I particularily enjoy while cycling is stopping at a crossing, yielding
          a pedestrian in front of me, while a motorist is second in line up behind
          me.

          Louis-Luc

          Louis-Luc
        • Eric_Floden@pch.gc.ca
          Do you mean yellow or white stripes for Zebra crossings? Here in Montreal, some of these crossings are really hazardous to use if there is no Stop sign or
          Message 4 of 11 , Jul 15, 2001
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            Do you mean yellow or white stripes for Zebra crossings? Here in Montreal,
            some of these crossings are really hazardous to use if there is no Stop
            sign or light, and I'm thinking they're there as ornaments only. Even with a
            Stop, sometimes these bastard motorists stop ON the crossing. I'm often
            tempted to kick or drop a stone on the car.

            Louis-Luc

            --------------------------------

            I'm forever slapping cars with an open palm when they're in my space. It gets
            their attention and really makes me feel better too...

            However, a recent discovery for me is the use of a hiking pole/stick. I've
            started to use one on hilly hikes to try to extend the life of my knees. But I
            discovered that carrying one while crossing a street makes autos more attentive.
            I don't know whether they see it as a threat (big stick), or simply an increase
            to my personal space (holding it in front of me as I cross), but I now make a
            point of carrying it on all walking trips in town. Bonus: unleashed dogs fear
            it, too!

            BTW, it looks like a ski pole, and not like a cane so don't think anone is
            responding to a perceived mobility impairment on my part.

            ef
            Vancouver
          • Louis-Luc
            This winter while I was going to cross-country skiing, I was holding my skis and poles 2/3 length in front, 1/3 behind me. This got me a more enjoyable street
            Message 5 of 11 , Jul 15, 2001
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              This winter while I was going to cross-country skiing,
              I was holding my skis and poles 2/3 length in front,
              1/3 behind me. This got me a more enjoyable street
              crossing event, because I felt no threat. Maybe the
              motorists felt hazardous for him to pass its fragile metal shield in front
              of the sharp steel tip of my poles.

              My only concern was to watch carefully not to hurt another pedestrian :-)

              The moral is: in deep countryside, one needs a pole or a couple of stones
              to protect ourself against attacks from bears or wolves, and do we need the
              same tools to protect ourselves from cars in some cities?

              Louis-Luc

              > -----Original Message-----
              > From: Eric_Floden@... [mailto:Eric_Floden@...]
              > Sent: 15 juillet, 2001 14:53
              > To: carfree_cities@yahoogroups.com
              > Subject: [carfree_cities] Traffic Lights (default red for road traffic)
              >
              >
              > Do you mean yellow or white stripes for Zebra crossings? Here in Montreal,
              > some of these crossings are really hazardous to use if there is no Stop
              > sign or light, and I'm thinking they're there as ornaments only.
              > Even with a
              > Stop, sometimes these bastard motorists stop ON the crossing. I'm often
              > tempted to kick or drop a stone on the car.
              >
              > Louis-Luc
              >
              > --------------------------------
              >
              > I'm forever slapping cars with an open palm when they're in my
              > space. It gets
              > their attention and really makes me feel better too...
              >
              > However, a recent discovery for me is the use of a hiking
              > pole/stick. I've
              > started to use one on hilly hikes to try to extend the life of my
              > knees. But I
              > discovered that carrying one while crossing a street makes autos
              > more attentive.
              > I don't know whether they see it as a threat (big stick), or
              > simply an increase
              > to my personal space (holding it in front of me as I cross), but
              > I now make a
              > point of carrying it on all walking trips in town. Bonus:
              > unleashed dogs fear
              > it, too!
              >
              > BTW, it looks like a ski pole, and not like a cane so don't think anone is
              > responding to a perceived mobility impairment on my part.
              >
              > ef
              > Vancouver
              >
              >
              >
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