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Old 05-17-2014, 02:59 PM
 
Location: Pasadena, CA
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Hmm I doubt that in 15 years car ownership in Central LA doubled. There's no source for those percentages in the article I posted, maybe they're off. I'm assuming you for your numbers from American Fact Finder?
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Old 05-17-2014, 04:21 PM
 
Location: Seattle, WA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by munchitup View Post
Hmm I doubt that in 15 years car ownership in Central LA doubled. There's no source for those percentages in the article I posted, maybe they're off. I'm assuming you for your numbers from American Fact Finder?
Probably because so many LA residents don't follow the laws and register their cars.
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Old 05-17-2014, 06:00 PM
 
Location: Las Vegas
14,090 posts, read 25,951,884 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GatsbyGatz View Post
Yes, but say you have an urban area where every street is made up of 7-lane streets. That means that within 10 city blocks there will be 9 streets between them, or 63 vehicle lanes. That's roughly 6-7 freeways that the pedestrian crosses to walk down 10 city blocks. That is poor planning if the intention was to create "walkable" city blocks.

Just shrinking those streets to 4-lanes (and making the traffic lanes narrower) would effectively cut the distance pedestrians have to cross by half and would bring city blocks closer together, thereby creating more walkable blocks. All those traffic lanes just adds distance to walkers and incentives driving over walking/biking.

Unfortunately, once city planners have spaced city blocks so far away like that, there's little that can be done to fix it. It's essentially "dead space" from a pedestrian's POV that will do nothing but discourage walking.
Part of my logical walk to shopping is going under a major freeway. It's pretty cool, they made a sort of park like area out of it.
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Old 05-17-2014, 08:18 PM
 
Location: Pasadena, CA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GatsbyGatz View Post
Probably because so many LA residents don't follow the laws and register their cars.
Um. No. What?
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Old 05-18-2014, 09:21 AM
 
Location: Crooklyn, New York
28,954 posts, read 27,161,961 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by munchitup View Post
Hmm I doubt that in 15 years car ownership in Central LA doubled. There's no source for those percentages in the article I posted, maybe they're off. I'm assuming you for your numbers from American Fact Finder?
Yeah, my numbers come from American Factfinder. The numbers represent the percentage of households that don't have a car. The Census Bureau defines a household as such.

Quote:
A household consists of all the people who occupy a housing unit. A house, an apartment or other group of rooms, or a single room, is regarded as a housing unit when it is occupied or intended for occupancy as separate living quarters; that is, when the occupants do not live with any other persons in the structure and there is direct access from the outside or through a common hall.

A household includes the related family members and all the unrelated people, if any, such as lodgers, foster children, wards, or employees who share the housing unit. A person living alone in a housing unit, or a group of unrelated people sharing a housing unit such as partners or roomers, is also counted as a household. The count of households excludes group quarters. There are two major categories of households, "family" and "nonfamily". (See definitions of Family household and Nonfamily household).
CPS Definitions - People and Households - U.S. Census Bureau

I'm not quite sure how that guy is calculating his numbers. To my knowledge, the Census Bureau only has a couple of ways to gauge car ownership/access. They can ask if a household owns a car (and if so, how many). And they can ask an individual if they have access to a car. When I ran the numbers, the percentage who had no access to a vehicle was about the same as the percentage of households that didn't have a vehicle (it was in fact slightly lower). As far as "driving age residents who do not own a car," I'm not aware of anything on the Census that asks that. That's something I suppose you could try to calculate using other Census data (number of people over age of 16/aggregate number of cars?), but that's obviously not going to give you an accurate count.

If you or any one else has any other ideas, please share.
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Old 05-18-2014, 01:10 PM
nei nei won $500 in our forum's Most Engaging Poster Contest - Thirteenth Edition (Jan-Feb 2015). 

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Location: NYC
46,048 posts, read 43,354,860 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BajanYankee View Post
I don't find it to be much of an issue. The sidewalks are so wide and the trees, lampposts and other objects provide sufficient buffering from traffic. There's a sense of protection I feel as a pedestrian on the Champs that I don't feel on Queens Boulevard.

https://maps.google.com/maps?q=Champ...12,316.54,,1,0

I don't think a street really has to be one lane in each direction to have good pedestrian design elements. I mean, it's hard to say that the Champs is "auto-scaled" when it's had essentially the same form for more than 150 years. Paving a street and allowing cars to run down it does not automatically make the urban form auto-scaled. When I say "auto-scale," I'm talking about an urban form that was ostensibly designed around the automobile (i.e., parking lots, drive thrus, gas stations, strip malls, buildings with no street-facing entrances, setbacks, distances between structures, etc).
I agree with you and you made your point well. However in my persona opinion I just find narrower streets, particularly commercial just nicer to walk on. Even if safe, I find narrower streets cozier and generally has less noisy car traffic and the view is dominated more by street things. And as someone who didn't grow up in a big city, while I don't mind density, I'm still a bit bothered by the sound of heavy traffic, more so than most who are used to big cities. I generally like the narrower commercial streets much better than the wider ones. Outside of Lower Manhattan, Broadway is decent, the nearby avenues aren't as nice with Park Ave being the worst. That doesn't make it unwalkable. Champs has the plus of wide sidewalks and already has a huge pedestrian volume. In more marginal streets, I feel like the wide streets are more of a detraction. Compare:

https://www.google.com/maps/@40.7293...3sPWd23U7Q!2e0

only a bit narrower, but still seems narrower

https://www.google.com/maps/place/SE...613c276ccb3df3

plenty of stores against the street in the first one, it's walkable but the big road detracts. This one isn't as bad but still feels a bit less pedestrian oriented than a narrower version would be:

https://www.google.com/maps/place/No...a42d644e94b187
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Old 05-18-2014, 01:18 PM
nei nei won $500 in our forum's Most Engaging Poster Contest - Thirteenth Edition (Jan-Feb 2015). 

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Location: NYC
46,048 posts, read 43,354,860 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BajanYankee View Post
Here's a picture of the Champs before they widened its sidewalks in 1994. Those inner lanes looked absolutely pointless. And awkard. But as you can see, the sidewalks were still full of pedestrians. There were still sidewalk cafes and restaurants then just as there are today.

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-dMY877oWfl...0/PICT0044.JPG

This looks much nicer.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedi...ia_Commons.jpg

Now I don't think most cities could do what Paris did by merely widening the sidewalks. Widening the sidewalks on a street where the built environment was built with the car in mind isn't really accomplishing anything.
Looks like they removed the wide tree median as well as the parked car area in between the median and the sidewalk and replaced it with one wide sidewalk with trees interspersed?

A plan for widening sidewalks on some wide Manhattan avenue is in the link in this post:

//www.city-data.com/forum/urban...l#post34306848

[the Old Urbanist link]
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Old 05-18-2014, 10:10 PM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
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Here is a good mashup of transportation stats for LA. Apparently even as income increases higher numbers of people of color still use transit.

http://www.kcet.org/socal/departures...st-growth.html

This weekend I happened to go to LA, in West Hollywood, a very walkable place (particularly for LA). We took the subway from downtown LA and transferred to a bus.As expected for LA, I mostly saw Latinos, particularly in the bus. We were on a packed articulated bus, and I saw about half a dozen non-Latinos, including the people I traveled with. We walked from our hotel to breakfast and talked to the waiter about our plans for the day, a festival less than a mile away. When we mentioned we planned to walk over, he looked at us like we told him we were going to take a hovercraft,,replying oh I have never walked over there, most people drive. (For the record it took us 15 minutes to walk there). I did chat with some other ladies in the neighborhood who walked and took transit, but also said most people thought it was strange, but they found it faster and more convenient. On the up note the subway was good. Union Station was beautiful and we had fun on our car-free trip. And I found a neighborhood in LA I could live in when I am priced out of the Bay Area.
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Old 05-19-2014, 05:16 PM
nei nei won $500 in our forum's Most Engaging Poster Contest - Thirteenth Edition (Jan-Feb 2015). 

Over $104,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum and additional contests are planned
 
Location: NYC
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Some great examples of unwalkable roads, or at least crossings:

A Crosswalk Too Far: Vote for the Least Crossable Street in America | Streetsblog USA
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Old 05-25-2014, 09:03 PM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
580 posts, read 456,279 times
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I think besides the obvious, such as sidewalks and safe crossings, what makes a place walkable is having something interesting to walk past. The main streets where I used to live (Orange County, Ca.) technically were walkable. They all had sidewalks and crosswalks, street lights, crossing signals, etc. But most of the main streets in residential areas are lined by blank cinder block walls that surround all the housing tracts. The length of the major blocks are so long that you spend an inordinate amount of time walking along busy arterial streets with nothing but a blank wall right next to you. There is absolutely nothing interesting, nothing to stimulate your senses. Also, you most likely will be the ONLY person walking down that sidewalk, giving you the sense of sticking out like a sore thumb while everyone else drives past you. It's a desolate and lonely feeling.

Now I live in a very walkable neighborhood. I can walk down the street next to where I live, and in less than a mile, pass an Italian deli, a small theater, numerous restaurants and cafes, food carts, small boutiques, two stores specializing in Persian rugs, a couple of jewelry stores and watch stores, Target, a couple of hotels, the largest book store in the United States, the central library, and the art museum. The sidewalks are full of people. It's lively, not desolate. That is the main difference between walkable and non-walkable streets.
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