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.
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 →
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 →
The Newark Subway run by New Jersey Transit (NJT) has much potential and is underdeveloped. It started as a replacement for the Morris Canal which was abandoned in the mid 1920’s. At that time, several cities, Newark, Bloomfield, Clifton, and Paterson purchased the canal route to be used for a main line for light rail... Continue Reading →
At the MontclairSAFE Complete Street implementation meeting in Montclair last week I wondered where was Bloomfield Avenue. When there is talk of a revitalization of Bloomfield Township, I wonder, where is South Bloomfield and its connection to Newark and the rest of suburban Essex in the Bloomfield Avenue Complete Streets studies? Between February and August... Continue Reading →
In my mind the perfect world is a world where every child would be able to ride their Green Tricycle up the center of their downtown. A child could ride to preschool, they could ride to the park, they could ride to their best friend’s house, they could ride to the grocery store, they could... Continue Reading →
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=18X6PQ94phs On Thursday, March 8 Montclair SAFE and NJDOT held an Open House to discuss Montclair’s Complete Streets implementation plan. The public was invited to make comments about which configurations of Complete Streets they preferred for Montclair. “I like option four, with the bike lane in this location,” said a former member of the Montclair... Continue Reading →