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Re: [carfree_cities] Death in the Streets

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  • Richard Risemberg
    The Barnes Dance intersection is also used in the heart of Beverly Hills. Works beautifully. Rick
    Message 1 of 8 , Jan 24, 2006
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      The "Barnes Dance" intersection is also used in the heart of Beverly Hills. Works beautifully.

      Rick

      -----Original Message-----
      >From: tokyotuds <ktuttle@...>
      >Sent: Jan 24, 2006 3:26 PM
      >To: carfree_cities@yahoogroups.com
      >Subject: [carfree_cities] Death in the Streets
      >
      >Hi All,
      >
      >The "Barnes Dance" crosswalk mentioned I had never heard named before. I wonder if the
      >Shibuya Crossing in Tokyo is the biggest Barnes Dance in the world.
      >
      >"Shibuya is also famous for its intersection crossing, reportedly the world's busiest, which
      >is located in front of Shibuya Station and uses a four-way stop to allow pedestrians to
      >inundate the entire intersection. Three large TV screens mounted on nearby buildings
      >overlook the crossing. The Starbucks store overlooking the crossing is reportedly the
      >busiest in the world. The 2003 United States movie Lost in Translation featured a scene at
      >the crossing." (Photo)
    • Doug Salzmann
      ... Americans unconsciously view auto crashes as unavoidable, even natural, causes of death. ... I m afraid I don t think that s true. Try this, US
      Message 2 of 8 , Jan 24, 2006
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        On Tue, 24 Jan 2006, tokyotuds wrote:

        > Andrea Bronfman surely
        > had many years of charity work left in her, but again another productive life is wiped out
        > and no charges of any kind were laid (as if it was an unpreventable accident).

        Americans unconsciously view auto crashes as unavoidable, even "natural,"
        causes of death.

        > One point of carfree development I am always interested in pointing out is the deaths,
        > injuries and incredible expense of our car dependant society. We need to continue to
        > develop communications along this line to help persuade people. I think a lot of people
        > can be persuaded by "improved safety + the facts".

        I'm afraid I don't think that's true. Try this, US residents: Tell
        people that cars kill as many people in this country as died in the
        attacks on the World Trade Center - every month. Then, ask what, if
        anything, they think should be done about that.

        No amount of reasoning or "education" is going to make American streets
        safer for vulnerable users as long as Americans see autos as the rightful
        "owners" of those streets.

        It may be possible to reduce risk by radically reducing automobile speed
        (this must be done by making it impossible to exceed limits - they won't
        ever obey mere rules) and encouraging other users to "get in the way" as
        much as possible. However, the only truly *safe* streets are those
        without motor vehicles.


        -Doug



        --
        Doug Salzmann
        P.O. Box 1007
        Larkspur, CA 94977
      • Matt Hohmeister
        Very true. Drunk drivers are given very harsh sentences for what they do, however, a sober driver could almost legally drive into a house and kill someone,
        Message 3 of 8 , Jan 25, 2006
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          Very true. Drunk drivers are given very harsh sentences for what they do, however, a sober
          driver could almost legally drive into a house and kill someone, claiming the "sun was in
          my eyes".

          Traffic fatalities in Tallahassee went up something like 300% in 2005. The city did
          absolutely nothing to make anything safer, and every redone intersection includes what I
          call "reverse neckdowns"--curb turn radii better suited to an airport runway.

          > Americans unconsciously view auto crashes as unavoidable, even "natural,"
          > causes of death.

          I've noted the "9/11 per month" theory, and most people either think it's not true or
          simply "conveniently ignore" that fact. I've also been told that smoking kills more people
          than auto accidents, and the focus should be placed on smoking. At least smokers only kill
          themselves.

          > I'm afraid I don't think that's true. Try this, US residents: Tell
          > people that cars kill as many people in this country as died in the
          > attacks on the World Trade Center - every month. Then, ask what, if
          > anything, they think should be done about that.

          How about this? Taxes. Is there anyone out there who'd like to do a cost estimate and
          figure out what property taxes would be in a carfree city? Something tells me a carfree city
          would have some of the lowest local tax rates around. Even school district taxes would be
          lower, since schools would be much less expensive to construct and maintain.

          > It may be possible to reduce risk by radically reducing automobile speed
          > (this must be done by making it impossible to exceed limits - they won't
          > ever obey mere rules) and encouraging other users to "get in the way" as
          > much as possible. However, the only truly *safe* streets are those
          > without motor vehicles.
        • J.H. Crawford
          Hi All, ... And you don t need all those school buses. The idea of doing a real estate tax (or maybe better, a local authority operating budget) comparison has
          Message 4 of 8 , Jan 26, 2006
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            Hi All,

            Matt said:

            >How about this? Taxes. Is there anyone out there who'd like to do a
            >cost estimate and
            >figure out what property taxes would be in a carfree city? Something
            >tells me a carfree city
            >would have some of the lowest local tax rates around. Even school
            >district taxes would be
            >lower, since schools would be much less expensive to construct and maintain.

            And you don't need all those school buses.

            The idea of doing a real estate tax (or maybe better, a local
            authority operating budget) comparison has real merit. I'm
            busy. Who has time?

            Regards,
            



            ----- ### -----
            J.H. Crawford Carfree Cities
            mailbox@... http://www.carfree.com
          • Matt Hohmeister
            In _Carfree Cities_, it is noted that vehicles _do_ have a use in small towns and rural areas--and the same goes for school buses. However, in
            Message 5 of 8 , Jan 26, 2006
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              In _Carfree Cities_, it is noted that vehicles _do_ have a use in small towns and rural
              areas--and the same goes for school buses.

              However, in cities--especially as big as Tallahassee--school buses are more of an
              embarrassment. The school district is saying that the city's transport system is so bad,
              they have to "drive" students home. I place this along the lines of the city forcing landlords
              to provide free tenant parking as a "solution" to the lack of mass transit and pedestrian
              facilities.

              As a high school teacher, I am appalled to see the bus ramp crammed with buses after
              school every day, even though the school is only a few blocks from the Steele Plaza, where
              every single city bus route passes through.

              One of my proposals is to replace the property tax with a property "fee", which would be
              based mainly on your lot's area and frontage against a public street--in other words,
              reflective of the cost of providing services.

              It kills me to think that a $200,000 house in a 1930s neighborhood with 50' of lot
              frontage pays the same property tax as a $200,000 tract house in a 1990s neighborhood
              with 150' of lot frontage.

              > And you don't need all those school buses.
              >
              > The idea of doing a real estate tax (or maybe better, a local
              > authority operating budget) comparison has real merit. I'm
              > busy. Who has time?
              >
              > Regards
            • Dan Kliman
              ... I m not too sure of why school buses are bad. They are a more efficient and centralized way of getting kids to and from school. Furthermore, they are
              Message 6 of 8 , Jan 26, 2006
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                > However, in cities--especially as big as
                > Tallahassee--school buses are more of an
                > embarrassment. The school district is saying that
                > the city's transport system is so bad,
                > they have to "drive" students home. I place this
                > along the lines of the city forcing landlords
                > to provide free tenant parking as a "solution" to
                > the lack of mass transit and pedestrian
                > facilities.

                I'm not too sure of why school buses are bad. They
                are a more efficient and centralized way of getting
                kids to and from school. Furthermore, they are
                specifically designed for kids so that a 6 year old
                does not need to navigate a public transit system.

                The problem I have seen is when a district does not
                bother to have a school bus system thus requiring
                parents to drive their children to school. This so
                ties into the problem of "Safe Routes to School" that
                soem grassroots orgs are trying to address.

                Dan

                http://www.geocities.com/dankliman
                http://www.sorryeverybody.com
              • Mike Neuman
                ... Yes. I wonder if it has to do with school districts becoming too single purpose ? Their primary purpose is to provide education at a reasonable cost.
                Message 7 of 8 , Jan 30, 2006
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                  > The problem I have seen is when a district does not
                  > bother to have a school bus system thus requiring
                  > parents to drive their children to school. This so
                  > ties into the problem of "Safe Routes to School" that
                  > soem grassroots orgs are trying to address.
                  >

                  Yes. I wonder if it has to do with school districts becoming
                  too "single purpose"? Their primary purpose is to provide education at
                  a reasonable cost. What get's left behind is everything else.
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