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It is undeniable that many roads in the suburbs are poorly designed for pedestrian safety and ease of use. The reason is that the roads were designed with vehicular traffic in mind because when they were built, there was little demand for walkability by the middle class in the suburbs. Times have changed and there is greater demand for walkability but we're still stuck with roads that are from a different era. This is pretty much a fact.

Whether the road in this specific instance is an appropriate poster child for the improvements to walkability we need for suburban roads is debatable. It doesn't seem like this particular road segment is nearly as bad as many many other road segments in the suburbs. Also, trying to build the exurbs to the same standard of pedestrian friendliness as the city or inner suburbs doesn't make sense.

So, Alpert is making a very valid point about the need to update our roads to accommodate shifts in the market demand for walkability but I don't know that this tragedy is the best example to make that point.

by Falls Church on Dec 2, 2012 5:50 pm • linkreport

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