Friday, November 29, 2019
Here’s a little game for you. How far could you get from where you live if you could walk only on sidewalks? If I turned right, only a few blocks until I hit Route 175. If I turned left, all the way to Broken Land Parkway. I occasionally see people walking along Broken Land on the grass and they never fail to look out of place and vaguely sketchy. “Who would walk on Broken Land?”
The Horizon Foundation has been working on something called the Complete Streets initiative. From their informational page:
Complete streets make transportation healthy, affordable, and sustainable and contribute to vibrant neighborhoods and a strong local economy.
The Howard County Council approved Complete Streets policy on October 7, 2019. How to most successfully implement it and how to fund that implementation seems to be what comes next. In the meantime, the Horizon Foundation continues to advocate for the importance of adequate sidewalks, crosswalks, bike lanes, and bus stops.
I thought of all this when I read the story of a pedestrian fatality in West Elkridge. (Phil Davis, Baltimore Sun)
In a news release, the department wrote that a 2004 Toyota Sienna was driving southbound on Washington Boulevard just south of Montgomery and struck a male pedestrian who was in the roadway.
I wondered. Why was the victim in the roadway? Was he trying to cross without benefit of a crosswalk? Or was he walking along the road because there were no adequate sidewalks? I don’t know.
I do wish that the Governor were as interested in projects like Complete Streets as much or more than his fondness for enlarging already large roadways. He could do a world of good in so many communities.