We need to stop converting streets to

These fatalities occurred because despite all the progress New York has made since Mayor de Blasio and his DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg signed the Vision Zero Pledge in December more on this belowmost of our city streets are still seen primarily as transportation corridors for cars and trucks. Until we prioritize pedestrian safety over traffic flow, we will never get to zero deaths for pedestrians, cyclists, drivers, or their passengers. Which, after all, is what city life is all about.

we need to stop converting streets to

We can have our cake and eat it too. Anything that impeded traffic flow was a problem to be identified and eliminated. Standard practice in traffic engineering is therefore to confine trees to a Vegetative Containment Zone kept away from the vehicles. People were used to walking wherever they wanted, and one American city responded to the new safety threat by requiring cars to be preceded by a man on foot carrying a flag, to warn bystanders that a car was coming.

The Ford Model T went into mass production inhowever, and within 10 years American cities had ceded control of city streets to cars. For the first time, people on foot had to stand at the corner and wait for a traffic light to let them cross. Sadik-Khan was able to make that radical change because DOTs all over the country have absolute control of our streets.

But of course most state and local DOTs worked to make driving better. Traffic flow went up, and pedestrian safety went down.

we need to stop converting streets to

We now have a system where Americans drive everywhere for everything, and we consider it normal that we have 30, traffic deaths every year. It officially announced a bold new standard for measuring the performance of our streets. Vision Zero began in Sweden, where traffic engineers recognized that there are only two ways to reduce traffic deaths to zero: either slow the cars way down, or separate the people from the cars. No pedestrians are run over on limited-access highways, because there are no pedestrians there.

Anyone who visits American sprawl sees how thoroughly modern engineering separates cars from the people on many new roads. But while the idea is to make traffic flow like water, the reality is that when everyone drives everywhere we eventually cannot build roads big enough for all the traffic, and many roads become more like auto sewers than efficient pipes.

In New York City, Mayor Giuliani built metal fences in midtown to keep people from crossing anywhere but at the intersections, but it turned out that was not safe, because the fences made drivers think it was safe to go faster, and going faster meant that pedestrians hit at the intersections were more likely to die. Now we know that Vision Zero advocates are right: to stop pedestrian deaths on city streets, we must slow cars down. Even with the protected bike lanes, the improved one-way suburban-style arterials we are building now will never get us to zero traffic deaths.

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The protected bike lanes which prevent the bikes from becoming MHOseven combine with the turn lanes, bright striping, and bold graphics to make drivers very comfortable going 35 mph and faster.

Getting to zero will require that traffic on most streets goes 20 mph or slower, as it does in the most advanced European cities. Speeding in cities is the new drunk driving. When we slow the cars down to 20 or below, we no longer have to build auto sewers. Because the sole purpose of almost all the ugly detritus of modern roads is to make it safer for cars to go faster, and traffic engineers like the great Hans Monderman in Holland have proven that one of the best ways to slow cars down and save lives is to simply remove the striping, warning signs, stop lights and plastic sticks.

Suddenly we can make beautiful streets where people want to get out of their cars and walk. This piece also ran on City Limits. Used with permission. View the discussion thread. Skip to main content. Toggle navigation X.

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Covert a Microsoft Streets & Trips File to something I can work with in Mapsource

To stop the killing of pedestrians on New York City Streets, we have to change the way we build our streets. John Massengale, AIA, is an international thought leader on the connections between urban design, architecture, placemaking, and walkability.This kind of seems like an article of faith among urbanists, but I've never found it convincing.

Maybe it's because I lived and worked for several years in downtown San Diego, which is highly walkable, and also consists almost entirely of one way streets. I've never been able to find any stats that show that two way conversions actually save lives not saying they don't exist, I've just never found any.

I'd imagine any increase in safety would be largely due to slowing traffic down, and there are other ways to do that besides two-way conversions. Unknown, there are studies at the foot of the Streetsblog page I link to above.

It's not an article of faith. But I agree with you about right-on-red. It is already illegal in most of New York City, and when I leave the city I feel much less safe because of it. Anyone want to write about that? I noted this briefly on Twitter, but not far from 6th and 7th Aves in Park Slope mentioned above there are a few streets in Windsor Terrace that badly need to be converted to two-way. The worst is 11th Ave, which runs over the Prospect expressway.

There's an onramp just past that overpass and cars turn onto it from BOTH lanes. I've almost been taken out several times there with my daughter while trying to cross because drivers don't bother to even look for pedestrians, especially when they're turning left from the right lane. It's a deathtrap. I simply cannot imagine why they are one-way.

One especially lovely woman on Twitter scolded me once for suggesting making them two-way because that would require "lots of extra stop signs cluttering up the neighborhood. As for the right on red, I think there are lots of people who would love to see that more widely implemented, at least in city down-towns. I've noted that it is one of my favorite things about New York City.

Of course, in car-centric America they are appalled at the few extra seconds it costs them. To me, there is a huge psychological difference.

A one-way street sets a tone for all users that the street is a place to get throughwhereas a two-way street feels like a place to be. For urban streets, the latter is preferable.Mike Brown is a transportation engineer and sponsor of Strong Towns through his firm, Metro Analytics. Today, he's sharing a guest article with what might be a surprising perspective on one-way streets. Check out the previous articles in our ongoing conversation about one-way streets here.

The rush to convert is an understandable reaction to engineering failure, but we may be blaming the wrong thing — ready to throw a fine baby possessing a lot of potential out with the bathwater. Soon, no one will dare speak of virtue in one-ways for fear of career-altering ridicule. Rachel Quednau has a great article about problems she sees with a one-way couplet in her neighborhood. It boils down to being too fast.

She argues that converting it could be a good way to slow it down and make it safer. It probably would slow it a bit, but other low-cost strategies can slow it also — without losing the good parts of couplets.

Guidelines for Converting Two-Way Streets to One-Ways?

In another critique of couplets, John Gilderbloom and William Riggs have an insightful piece showing evidence that property-values along older one-ways are much lower than along similar two-way streets. Again, their observations generally boil down to high-speed. So, are one-ways inherently high-speed? Or do these findings simply indict both intentional and inadvertent high-speed designs?

I think one-ways can actually work better than two-ways in many cases for building strong towns. This articles is Part I, addressing the existing one-ways of pre-war tight grids. There are few visual cues telling drivers to be cautious, and aggressive drivers know they can usually get away with 9 mph higher than the speed limit without a ticket, so closer to 40 mph will be common. This is high-density residential, so 25 or even 20 makes more sense.

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But then it will be harder for both autos and pedestrians to find acceptable gaps in both directions for crossing, and there are more conflict-points for both autos and pedestrians in general. That will increase accidents, although reduced speed will offset the increase hard to say which effect will be greater. Below, I used the free StreetPlan. Nine-foot lanes are certainly not what traffic engineers want when aiming to help drivers get 5 or more miles up the road hence the yellow warning.

And if a lot do, then tough luck — the change could motivate drivers to move closer to their job. Since Prospect Ave. If the community can raise a little more money, minor intersection modifications will force drivers to slow down. Raised table-top intersections with alternative coloring would work.

Forced curvature also works. This could be temporarily achieved with something as simple as a row of cinderblocks to create the blue spaces and some planted pots and lawn-chairs in the voids.

Here are several resources for conducting a temporary traffic calming demonstration in your town. What do they all have in common? One-ways are a big part of how they achieved and maintain their compact design. Their tight grids matter, but ever since Henry Ford, the ability for vehicles to flow also matters to buses, trolleys, UPS trucks, cement trucks, taxis, and automated vehicles. Two-ways will simply gridlock at lower traffic volumes than one-ways.

A city street is a terrible thing to waste

When any mode becomes unattractive, the market is hindered and some will build elsewhere — especially if not yet at critical mass for alternative modes to weigh in heavily. Engineers used to focus on both high-volume and high-speed.

But you can still have high-volume at low speeds. Pedestrians cross at-will anywhere they want, as they only need a gap in one direction. No wise doctor would ever discount all potential uses of a drug just because negative side-effects outweigh benefits if applied incorrectly.

Am I missing key weaknesses?Log in or Join. Adventure Rider. BenFongTorresJan 24, I have a MS Streets and Trips route file. I figured out pretty quick the. Been all over the net and on Google looking for a way to convert. Closest I got was to be able to see a straight line route online but it was obviously FUBAR as it was all over the globe and this route is only a short few days through Alberta, Canada!

Would anyone more savvy than me be willing to convert the file for me? PM and I will be happy to email an attachment. DragonNesterJan 24, TwohondasJan 24, Even if I could convert the file to a. When I look at my saved routes they are all. ADV Sponsors.

DragonNesterJan 25, Map Source opens gpx files. You have to export a. So, it would have to be done by the author of the file Then sent to you as a gpx file. There is a free program called gpsBabel that will convert different formats to gpx, gdp and others. You could try that instead of asking the author to re-send the file as a gpx. Joined: Mar 22, Oddometer: 8, Location: Nebraska. TwohondasJan 25, There are reports that the version screwed up the GPX conversion process but the gpx file can be fixed with a text editor.

BenFongTorresJan 25, You must log in or sign up to reply here. Show Ignored Content. No, but I wanna be. My password: Forgot your password?Turning your front garden into off-street parking can be a big plus, but how should you go about it? Here's what you need to know. If you live on a busy street where you struggle for parking, converting your front garden into a drive can seem like an ideal solution.

A front garden can add considerable value to your home if it's turned into off-street parking, especially in expensive urban areas. The good news is, you can often create or replace a driveway without obtaining planning permission. The key is drainage - if you use a porous material, such as gravel, permeable asphalt or permeable block paving, you won't usually need planning permission. Nor will you if the off-street parking is constructed to allow rainwater to drain to a border or lawn.

However, if you're covering an area of more than five square metres in an impermeable material and rainwater won't be able to drain to a permeable area, planning permission will be required. If you live in a flat or maisonette, it doesn't have PD rights, so you'll have to apply for planning permission for off-street parking. The same goes if your house has had its PD rights removed by an Article 4 direction, which often happens in conservation areas.

If your front garden is already paved or partially paved, you may think it can be used for parking. However, unless the paving was designed for parking on, it probably won't be suitable because it won't have enough hardcore underneath to take the weight of a car, for example. If you have some off-street parking and want to extend it, this may seem straightforward but often isn't.

It may be hard to match the existing paving material, especially if it's been there some time and has weathered, and the driveway may not have been constructed properly in the first place, in which case it's better to start from scratch - trying to add new to old can be a false economy. As well as the driveway, you'll need a dropped kerb so you can get on and off it easily in your car. Planning permission is usually required for a dropped kerb and the local council will have to do the work, often charging a lot for it.

The pavement may also need to be altered - it may have to be strengthened or angled differently, for example. You may be refused planning permission for off-street parking if permission is required and the dropped kerb if, say, your front garden is considered too small, or your house is by a bend in the road, so consult the council at an early stage.

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The goal, they say, is to slow down traffic and make streets more pedestrian friendly. Petersburg, and Tampa, among other cities. These proposals have become a major source of controversy in at least some of these cities, especially Austin, Cincinnati, and Chattanooga. By almost any measurable criteria -- safety, pollution, congestion, and effects on most local businesses -- one-way streets are superior to two way.

The idea that two-way streets are superior because they are more pedestrian friendly is just a planner's fantasy that disguises their real intent: to create an auto-hostile environment. Most one-way streets in this country were first created from two-way streets in the s through the s. These conversions took place in areas built before the automobile became the prevalent form of transportation. Such areas tend to have narrower streets and smaller blocks than post-auto cities.

One-way streets were thus an attempt to accommodate auto traffic in areas not built for the auto. The wider streets and longer blocks typical of post-auto areas often allow improved traffic flows without one-way streets. Before the s, transportation policy was firmly in the hands of traffic engineers, whose primary goal was safety and secondary goal was the movement of people and goods. Cities that converted two-way to one-way noted a significant decline in accidents. One-way streets have the obvious advantage that pedestrians and drivers need only look one way when watching for traffic.

How many times have you looked both ways when crossing a two-way street, only to be nearly hit by a car coming from the direction in which you weren't looking at the moment you entered the intersection? One-way streets also permitted higher average speeds because signals on a one-way grid could be synchronized to allow drivers in all directions to proceed indefinitely at a fixed rate of speed. A semblance of synchronization can be approached on a two-way grid only if signals are more than a half-mile apart, and even then it is less than perfect.

Traffic on two-way streets, for example, is often delayed by special left-turn signals, which aren't needed on one-way grids. Faster speeds on signal-synchronized one-way streets increased road capacities without laying more pavement. Since the increase was in the average rate of speed, not the top speed, increased speeds posed no loss in safety.

One way streets not only have greater capacity than two-way streets, they save the space that two-way streets require for left-turn lanes. In the s, a new goal -- reduced air pollution -- led to more conversions of two-way streets to one way. The smooth flow of traffic allowed by signal synchronization meant less auto emissions. Since cars pollute more at slower speeds and in stop-and-go traffic, one-way streets can generate significantly less pollution than two-way.

Today, transportation policy is in the hands of urban planners who claim their goal is to make cities more livable by designing them for people, not cars.

we need to stop converting streets to

The fact that people in most American cities do 85 to 95 percent of their travel by car does not deter planners from making this artificial dichotomy. In transportation planning, "sustainable" has become a code word for "anything but automobiles. Austin goes on to say, "The safety and comfort of pedestrians is of greater concern than the convenience of a driver. In fact, there is no reason why this must be so. Planners only sometimes admit that their real goal is to discourage driving by creating auto-hostile environments.

Since every single car on the road has at least one person in it who is trying to get somewhere, this is hardly a people-friendly attitude.We have a large up-scale residential colony with commercial centers. There has been a request from the authority to consider converting some streets to one-way streets to better manage the traffic flow. This is a separate authority within the city with an area of 9, acres.

A couple of the major streets of the network have already been made one-way. Generally, the trend has been to go the opposite way, but are there any guidelines to see through this type of analysis?

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You are correct — the current trend is to move away from one-way streets and several communities have converted one-way pairs back to two-ways my hometown of Minneapolis, MN went through this process about five years ago. Two-way streets provide more flexibility and the general thinking is that they are friendlier to pedestrians and bicyclists. Please log in again. The login page will open in a new tab.

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After logging in you can close it and return to this page. Welcome to Spack Solutions. Your one-stop-solution to help tame congestion and eliminate traffic fatalities. Get expert traffic engineering insights straight to your inbox, and become a better traffic engineer. Written by professional engineers, the Engineering Guide Series includes topics on:.

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Sign up today to receive your first free research brief! Perform a capacity analysis Vistro or Synchro based Highway Capacity Manual methodology of those forecasts with the existing network with the fully built out traffic volume forecasts. Perform the same analyses with the network converted to one-way pairs.

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Compare the delay results of your two study scenarios. Maybe there are just one or two key corridors that should be converted, while leaving everything else two-way. Additional Thoughts on the Situation? Related Posts. Close dialog.

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