Thursday, May 20, 2010

CNU18 Highlights

I decided not to attend the yearly Congress of New Urbanism this year, perhaps still having had my full of Atlanta having lived there a decade ago. Here are the selected highlights of best soundbites that I've picked up off the various twitter feeds thus far:

A cyclist can travel 3.5 miles on the energy of a 350-calorie slice of pizza. A car can go 100 feet.

How transit use correlates with physical activity: Transit users in Atlanta were found to be 3.42 times as likely as non-users to get their recommended 30 minutes a day of physical exercise.
Did some quick math of my own. If you burn .77 calories per kilogram of body mass per mile walked, I would be able to walk 5.64 miles on that same slice of pizza. Walkability wins!!! Of course, bikes can go faster.

In fact, now that I think about the ADT mph comparison from below, since bikes can travel at 20 mph (and much more safely) and can do so in denser "packs," we can therefore move more "traffic" ie greater Average Daily Traffic counts via roads designed for bikes.

And since bikes take less space, we need less infrastructure, of which bikes put much less eroding pressure upon, allowing for less maintenance costs. Dallas is having budget issues again by the way. Jus' sayin'.
Richard Jackson: If the whole country had Atlanta's rate of crash deaths we'd have an additional 15,000 deaths per year.
Apparently, it hasn't changed.
In Atlanta, traffic fatalities are leading cause of death from ages 3 to 33.
Displacing the Varsity, I presume.
Lawrence Frank - Proximity and connectivity are crucial predictors of obesity. Driving makes you fat.
You're fattest cities in America? Texas leads the way!! Let's add more pork (literally) to the highway trust fund.
David Byrne: Retailers want bike racks instead of car parking places in front of their shops b/c far more people can park...and large vehicles don't block the view of their storefront windows.
Charles Brewer: Taking the cars away means radically enhanced freedom for children.

Charles Brewer: I personally feel that most New Urbanists are such appeasers when it comes to cars.
Mike Lydon: Go out there and put cones up, show traffic engineers that roads will be fine and people will be happier.
Not unlike the Oak Cliff Better Block project. Do it. What we've also learned is that at higher speeds cars spread out. Meaning at 20 mph, the same amount of cars move through as at 45 mph. Since traffic engineers are worried about Average Daily Traffic counts, yet design for speeds of 45 or more, they are failing at their job by making streets LESS SAFE without moving more cars.

Since this suggests utter incompetence, take the power back. Reclaim your streets for your kids, your family, and your neighbors.