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Old 01-14-2014, 12:19 PM
 
113 posts, read 127,547 times
Reputation: 180

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Annuvin View Post
Really? From a per capita standpoint, Canada is a worse polluter than China. That in itself is a foolish belief when you consider much of the air in China is toxic and their CO2 emissions are exponentially larger by the raw ton. As for the urban/suburban argument, I can see the smog over Toronto from Oshawa on a summer day. But I guess that make it a healthier environment when you look at the problem "per capita".

Yes, really, because you can't really change the number of people, you can change their distribution on the landscape and that is the rural, suburban, urban dynamic. You also can't just look at the issue from an anthropocentric point of view, or one shouldn't.
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Old 01-14-2014, 12:42 PM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
27,165 posts, read 29,655,359 times
Reputation: 26651
Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post

The next link says nothing about arrests. It does say that the parents' biggest fear is speeding cars. And well it should be! The leading cause of death in children over 1 year of age is accidents, and in most states, auto accidents are the leading type of death-causing accidents. (A few states that have a lot of swimming pools have drowning as the first type of accident.) Auto-pedestrian accidents are included in auto accidents.

Death among children and adolescents: MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia
http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j...59378465,d.aWc
Pedestrians | National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) (Some repetitious stuff from the above link)

Few parents will put their kids in a situation they feel is unsafe.
The question is, why do we think it is good policy to put unsafe roads/speeding highways in front of our schools. That is ridiculous! It seems like a no brainer that the roads around schools should be extra safe.

If we start making roads safer for kids, they'll be safer for everyone. In front of schools is a good place to start, I think plenty of parents would love for it to be safe enough for kids to walk to school.....
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Old 01-14-2014, 01:02 PM
Status: "Summer!" (set 17 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
86,990 posts, read 102,554,590 times
Reputation: 33058
Quote:
Originally Posted by jade408 View Post
The question is, why do we think it is good policy to put unsafe roads/speeding highways in front of our schools. That is ridiculous! It seems like a no brainer that the roads around schools should be extra safe.

If we start making roads safer for kids, they'll be safer for everyone. In front of schools is a good place to start, I think plenty of parents would love for it to be safe enough for kids to walk to school.....
Most elementary schools, at least in my area, are in fact in residential areas. Most cities also have school zone speed limits of around 20 MPH. In rural areas schools are more likely to be on a major road. Sometimes the school was built before the road became so busy, as well.

It's not just the location of the school that is problematic, either. My kids' ele school is in a residential area, but they had to cross a 6 lane 40 mph road to get there. I did let them ride their bikes when they were older, after much instruction and practice in crossing the street. The schools usually don't provide any help with crossing anywhere but the street the school is on, and the 20 mph limit is only for a short distance around the school. One of the links referred to the big mass of traffic in the 15 minutes at the beginning and end of the day. If you've ever driven by a school at those times, you've seen what it's like. It's no wonder schools are concerned about the kids' safety.
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Old 01-14-2014, 02:33 PM
 
Location: M I N N E S O T A
14,800 posts, read 17,708,360 times
Reputation: 9029
Quote:
Originally Posted by gypsydoc View Post
I think desnsity and walkability are really indicative of how livable an area is. It's about quality of life for many who are tired of the long distance driving between malls and shopping strips. There is a trend to want to slow down the pace of life; live closer to work and to shopping. Free up drive time. Make choices that feel better, calmer.
They aren't really long distances though...
where i live [Missouri City, TX (typical suburbia)]
shopping is scattered all over town, the main highway is lined with stores and the next town over has a huge mall.
No one is no more than a 3 minute drive to a store and/or restaurant.
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Old 01-14-2014, 02:39 PM
 
Location: Pittsburgh, PA (Morningside)
12,416 posts, read 11,917,166 times
Reputation: 10536
Quote:
Originally Posted by iNviNciBL3 View Post
They aren't really long distances though...
where i live [Missouri City, TX (typical suburbia)]
shopping is scattered all over town, the main highway is lined with stores and the next town over has a huge mall.
No one is no more than a 3 minute drive to a store and/or restaurant.
How many of those restaurants are not chains?
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Old 01-14-2014, 02:53 PM
 
Location: M I N N E S O T A
14,800 posts, read 17,708,360 times
Reputation: 9029
Quote:
Originally Posted by eschaton View Post
How many of those restaurants are not chains?
A lot, not that a local restaurant makes a town more walkable...
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Old 01-14-2014, 03:37 PM
 
Location: Poshawa, Ontario
2,986 posts, read 3,319,495 times
Reputation: 5622
Quote:
Originally Posted by stateofnature View Post
You're completely wrong. Suburbs are much dirtier than cities. Green Cities, Brown Suburbs by Edward L. Glaeser, City Journal Winter 2009
Good lord... I have no idea who this "Edward Glaeser" is, but it should be obvious to anyone with an IQ higher than a golf shoe that cities, by their very nature, have more people consuming more resources with more cars, more smog, more trash, more litter and more vermin. If you combine this with the fact that the aging infrastructure of most major cities contains a great deal of asbestos and lead paint, you'd have to be a half-wit to come to the conclusion that this magically results in a cleaner living environment.

Using that silly logic, Glaeser must believe that Beijing is the cleanest city on the planet!

Quote:
Originally Posted by whoathere View Post
Yes, really, because you can't really change the number of people, you can change their distribution on the landscape and that is the rural, suburban, urban dynamic. You also can't just look at the issue from an anthropocentric point of view, or one shouldn't.
So we are supposed to ignore the scientific model which would consider the raw tonnage of CO2 emissions, smog, litter and pollution the inhabitants of a city creates per square mile simply because it disproves your belief that cities are a hotbed of green living? Cities create more pollution, period. All the statistical manipulation in the world isn't going to change that fact.

Last edited by Annuvin; 01-14-2014 at 03:47 PM..
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Old 01-14-2014, 03:42 PM
 
2,575 posts, read 4,688,777 times
Reputation: 6378
I lived in CA for 25 years and could walk to a variety of stores, restaurants, banks, etc. easily. Part of the time I lived in Davis, which is one of the cities that always wins awards from bicycling organizations for its amazing network of dedicated bike trails. The public schools there have bike racks with literally hundreds of bikes locked at them. There are no school buses, everyone rides or walks to school. I moved to a small town in 2010 and I had no idea how annoying it was going to be to have to get in my car to drive to a grocery store. Not that I *never* did - if I had a large shopping trip, of course I used my car. But I was so close to the grocery store that often if I just needed a few things, I would simply walk. Out to dinner? Walk. Cafe? Walk. Bank? Walk. Neighborhood hardware store? Walk. I like to walk, and while it's nice to live adjacent to 300 acres of public wooded trails, I can't buy anything I need or run errands in there.
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Old 01-14-2014, 03:48 PM
 
Location: Kennedy Heights, Ohio. USA
1,822 posts, read 1,493,187 times
Reputation: 1424
Quote:
Originally Posted by primegolden View Post
I think there are many reasons why walkability is a factor that is being reexamined these days. For one thing, it's healthier. Our country suffers from much higher rates of obesity than other civilized nations. Fresh air is healthier, especially when it's not so polluted. Yes, there are more eco-friendly cars, but they need parking spaces. All those parking spaces are taking up valuable room that could be used for other purposes, whether for bicycling, walking, shops, or community gathering places. Sprawl is expensive. Density is anti-sprawl. The more sprawl, the more driving, the more pollution, the more highways.

Personally I prefer living in rural areas. I like wide open spaces, my own well water, my privacy. I owned a place outside of town, and there as no public transportation. Had to drive great distances to get to doctors' offices, school, my job, and to the airport or other transit hubs. And I am getting too old and my health is not great anymore, so I need neighbors, community, social connections, and that's hard to come by when you live in an isolated location. I don't like driving so much anymore.

We made a change and moved to a college town, still near the country side but it's highly walkable. I've come to appreciate my new life, with a rail trail for walking, a bus station to go to major cities, and a bus loop for errands around town, and the events and social activities that are happening constantly within my easy reach. I love being able to walk to the post office, to get a loaf of bread, to get coffee and talk to the people who live in the town.

Do I want to live in a big metro? Not really, to be honest. I am retired, my son is a student. We can't afford a big city. This walkable, dense little downtown works well for us. Thankfully there are buses just 1/10 a mile away, plenty of churches, supermarkets, scenic views, and people of all ages. We're OK here. When we need to get to NYC, we take the local bus to the train station, and that's how we get to the city.

I agree with you about costs to build rail lines, except we have to consider that if more people used them, there might be less pollution, less parking issues, and more cost efficiencies. On the other hand, many argue for the benefits of rapid transit and that fuel-efficient and cleaner buses are less costly to put into play. I can understand that too. Either way, the benefit is that mass transit moves large numbers of people to their jobs in the cities. (And there are certainly more jobs in most cities, than there are out in the suburbs.)

Also consider the aging boomers, the huge wave of them, that at some point may not be able to drive for medical reasons, and that isolation for them is not healthy.

Just random thoughts.
While at work today I was talking to an old guy that lives in a condo in a unwalkable suburb. He had an heart attack a few months back while driving and hit several cars. His license is suspended until he is deemed by his doctor and the state that he is medically fit to drive. He is now stuck in a situation that to get basic necessities is almost impossible without having access to a car or transportation. He is now totally reliant on his daughter who lives in a different suburb to take him grocery shopping. His daughter was sick last week with the flu he said so he hasn't been able to shop for groceries for 2 weeks. He said he has tooth pain and swelling in his jaw and needs to see a dentist but since he has no access to transportation he hasn't been able to go a dentist. Not a good situation to be in.
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Old 01-14-2014, 03:56 PM
Status: "Summer!" (set 17 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
86,990 posts, read 102,554,590 times
Reputation: 33058
Quote:
Originally Posted by iNviNciBL3 View Post
A lot, not that a local restaurant makes a town more walkable...
Exactly! In point of fact the rent at a lot of these strip malls is lower than rents in downtown-type buildings, facilitating new restaurants of a local character.
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