Weekly Walk Around the News

 

Posted by Kerry Dirk

 

 

Local

Transit ridership increased 11.8 percent between January 2012 and January 2013 as the Seattle area added more than 30,000 jobs. The Sounder commuter rail increased by 11% in 2012, and the King County Metro carried 4.6% more passengers than the previous year.

 

The Seattle City Council Transportation Committee recently approved a request for expansion by Car2Go. After enrolling 18,000 members in its first 90 days, Car2Go is proposing a 25% growth in service area, with a 30% increase in the number of cars in its fleet.

 

The UW Center for Public Health Nutrition needs your help in documenting your involvement in activities to improve access to healthy foods, reduce food insecurity, support breastfeeding or increase opportunities for physical activity in Washington. Please take five minutes to complete this Washington State Nutrition & Physical Activity Plan survey.

 

 

National 

 

A recent study found that mixed-used neighborhoods, which offer a blend of residences, retail space, and offices, might also be safer. The study examined eight high-crime neighborhoods in Los Angeles found that crime rates were 45% higher in commercial-only areas than in mixed-use neighborhoods.

 

In New York City, traffic deaths will now be called “collisions” rather than “accidents,” after the police department decided to conduct more thorough investigations of accidents that result in critical injuries. This change came about after many pedestrians died days after being struck, which results in an investigation that starts too late.

 

Public transportation resulted in 10.5 billion trips last year in the United States, with 16 transit systems reporting record ridership numbers. 

 

The Secretary of Transportation argues that Americans want to move from their cars to public transportation, with ridership at record levels on Amtrak on the northeast corridor.

 

Walk Score has developed a list of walkability benefits for seniors. Retirees in walkable neighborhoods are able to have higher levels of socialization, the transportation needed to leave the house, control of their own schedules, and a healthier lifestyle.

 

 

International

 

The World Health Organization report found that 27% of the 1.2 million people killed on the road each year are bicyclists or pedestrians. In developing countries, that percentage is even higher. Visit the WHO’s interactive report to look at findings for individual countries.

 

Athens, Greece is planning a major overhaul to its downtown, including projects to turn three major town squares into green spaces for pedestrians and cyclists.

 

A recent study found that walking outdoors three times a week helped with the recovery of stroke survivors. The 128 men and women who participated in the study had a 16.7% improved quality of life due to better physical health and could get 17.6% further in a six-minute walking endurance test.

 

 

If you come across any interesting pedestrian news or stories, please send a link to info@feetfirst.org.

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