http://paloaltoonline.com/square/print/index.php?i=3&d=1&t=2930


Town Square

Shared Space - A Great Way to Slow Traffic

Original post made by Winslow Arbenaugh on Dec 26, 2007

This seems a good idea, and it's gaining momentum!

Web Link


Comments

Posted by Adam, a resident of Barron Park
on Dec 27, 2007 at 8:59 am

Unfortunately, this "shared responsibility" approach would probably not work in the U.S. In a country where there is gun violence and indiscriminate shooting of innocent people, I can see that vehicular manslaughter would rise.


Posted by Resident, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Dec 27, 2007 at 3:08 pm

The program is designed only for public spaces where pedestrians and cyclists share routes with cars. Traffic engineers say it could lead to gridlock if introduced in high-traffic areas, such as large cities.

"Practically speaking, the shared space concept works only at intersections that attract fewer than 15,000 vehicles a day, said Juergen Gerlach, a professor at the Center of Traffic and Transport at the University of Wuppertal. The approach can backfire if it covers more than a half-mile of road at a time, he said. Otherwise, drivers would get too frustrated with the slow pace and bypass the area."

I think this could work in Palo Alto at certain intersections and roads.


Posted by Matt Dillon, a resident of Charleston Gardens
on Dec 28, 2007 at 10:40 am

Adam you are just silly. I guess you did not get that first person shooter you wanted from Santa?

The story as told would work in Palo Alto due to the two simple rules. Also there are very few that drive 25 as posted in PA and even fewer cops that enforce 25mph; 30 is more realistic.

- Drivers cannot go more than 30 mph, the German speed limit for city driving. And everyone has to yield to the right, regardless of whether it's a car, a bike or a baby carriage. -
I still do not understand where the PC crowd is mentally at? Is it that you play too many video games? What on earth do firearms have to do with this story.


Posted by Crazy idea, a resident of Professorville
on Dec 28, 2007 at 1:03 pm

Its pretty simple. Cars and people dont mix. Cars dent when they hit things. People tend to fare less well. There are too many distractions today for the average motorist for this to work properly. Once people in Bohmte begin to get more familiar with the process speeds will go up.

Other alternatives are being worked well in different cities..

Here's a concept - get cars off the street by having some semblance of a convenient public transport system. Park and ride systems have been used to wide acceptance in key cities in Europe, for example.

Pedestrian zones are great and we should really consider them for University avenue (when did you ever get down that road in any decent time anyway?). These actually make downtown areas more consumer-friendly and drive more foot traffic.

I hate to say it, but the speed cameras in the UK have really brought down the speeding in urban areas.

Unfortunately, I think more rules, not less, make sense for transit systems.