Feet First’s look at pedestrian news for the week of November 18, 2011.
WEEKLY WALK AROUND THE NEWS
Posted by Helen Lundell
November 18, 2011
The Seattle Department of Transportation will be opening the new “Ship Canal Trail,” between 11th Avenue West and West Emerson Street, at 11am on Saturday November 19th. You are invited to join the fun at the grassy area south of and below W Emerson Street Bridge, where the bridge intersects with 16th Avenue W.
In the Seattle Times this week, Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn and David Fleming argued that traffic-related crashes should be treated as a major public health issue, since they are the leading cause of death and serious injury in Seattle. They propose tackling crashes with the four ‘e’s: education, enforcement, environment and empathy, and invite you to share your ideas on addressing the issue by participating in two more Road Safety Summit meetings — 6 p.m. Tuesday at the Northgate Community Center and 6 p.m. Monday, Nov. 21, at the Southwest Community Center. Submit comments online at www.seattle.gov/roadsafety.
The Seattle times reported on parents’ dissatisfaction with Seattle Public School’s new transportation plan. 80 yellow school buses have been taken off the road with the aim of saving $4 million – resulting in a sparser, lower quality service. While some parents are upset at late running services, local government spokespeople acknowledge the issues, but regard the cuts in service as an inevitable result of today’s economy.
The American Public Health Assocation expressed concern about the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee’s draft transportation bill
(MAP-21), which was voted out of committee with a successful bipartisan vote last week. They argued that while the bill includes Transportation Enhancements, Safe Routes to School and the Recreational Trails Program, they will be receiving reduced funding and expensive activities that do not appear to promote the mission of the programs (including road oriented investments) will now be eligible for the funds.
- are more likely to live in neighborhoods with fewer and lower-quality sidewalks, and fewer aesthetic amenities like scenery that make walking safer, easier and more appealing;
- tend to live in neighborhoods with fewer parks and other recreation resources; and
- experience more danger from crime and traffic than others do, and face more barriers from neighborhood physical and social disorder.
A commentator for “Healthy Policies” noted that health has recently become a prominent topic in the international “Occupy” movement, with “Healthcare for the 99%” marching in New York” in October. However, she urged that messages highlighting the social determinants of health (including the built environment and transportation systems) should not get lost in the fray.
If you come across any interesting pedestrian news or stories, please send a link to firstname.lastname@example.org.