When communities are developed they are built for people to live in, raise a family in, stay and build social capital. All communities except African-American communities, the most hypersegregated metropolitan ethnic group. When a community is African-American less money is spent on it, the infrastructure is built for people to drive through and not to drive to. African-American communities are regularly cut in half by highways, bulldozed to make stadiums, redlined to prevent loans, over-policed and used as dumping grounds for environmental waste.
The streets are unsafe, because the infrastructure is made only to support cars, but it doesn’t just stop with infrastructure. The streets are also unsafe, because of labor. In a world where we can deposit a $10,000 check at 2 a.m. from our beds why do we all need to be at work at 9:00 a.m.? Why do we still have a 40 hour work week? Why is rush hour still a thing? Why do women have to drive an extra hour everyday to take their 6-week-olds to childcare or their 6-year-olds to kindergarten?
Vision Zero does not accept injustice If we want a world that has complete streets, if we want streets that are just and fair we must have street design and technology that supports those streets. We must have cycle tracks, we must have safe crosswalks and we must have pedestrian plazas. We must also have reduced speed limits, good public transit, streets that are accessible for the disabled, the elderly and the very young. We must have these infrastructures in every community. In African-American, Latino and working class communities street design, technology and systematic change is historically not prioritized. In these communities safety in regards to urban planning and transportation is put almost exclusively on the individual through education and the police via punitive individual consequences. For communities of color the police have been a huge part of enforcement in regards to safe streets policy and in many communities of color they have been the only component of safe streets policy. Vision Zero is a chance to turn the tide against punitive enforcements on communities of color. Vision Zero is a chance to make real fundamental change to the infrastructure of all communities.
How we get around is the reason that authoritarian governments can thrive in the Middle East. It doesn’t take many people to poke a hole in the ground and get oil, so you don’t have to share the money, you can keep it all to yourself. If you don’t have to share the money then a few people can be rich and awful. If we want to stop oppression in the Middle East then we need to work on building infrastructures that support transportation that does not depend on oil.
Join us on tomorrow on Friday, March 24 at 3:30 p.m. at the Glenwood Avenue Garage, 23 Lackawanna Avenue as Bloomfield opens up its first Bike Depot. RSVP: Cyndi.Steiner@NJBWC.ORG For more info go HERE
In many cities in the United States cycling is planned as a sports activity, so roads are to recreational places. That is wonderful. People need those options, but that’s not the only purpose of the bicycle. Giving the public only a back road bicycle lane to a recreational spot pushes the idea that cycling isn’t a real way to accomplish everyday tasks. It limits the bicycle to leisure. It strips cycling of its utility as transportation. It turns cycling into a hobby for the rich and privileged.
We are accepting submissions to Cycle Track. Cycle Track is a "tract" that will showcase philosophies, policies, politics and fiction that uses alternative transit (bicycles, walking, trains, busses...) as the "vehicle" in which to convey the story or idea. Cycle Tracks will be distributed on the trains in New Jersey, NY, L.A., Oakland, Madison, and DC.... Continue Reading →
The public input did indicate there is a need for the creation of designated and clearly-marked bike lanes, paths and routes near or along Bloomfield Avenue including the business districts in Verona, Montclair, and Bloomfield. There was also a strong desire expressed for linking other major destination attractions such as parks, schools, transit facilities... Continue Reading →
I am a utilitarian cyclist. When I ride my bicycle I wear street clothes. I do this to promote cycling as what it is, transport. I use my bicycle (when it is warm enough) to go grocery shopping, to make quick errands, to meet with clients and to go get coffee. Bicycling isn’t a hobby,... Continue Reading →