The Safest Country? It has Universal Speed Enforcement!

      Walk Metro Vancouver has just returned from a week in Switzerland driving across the country. There is a major difference in driving in Switzerland~speed cameras are everywhere~on local streets, at the entrances to small towns, and on every major highway. The fines for speeding are steep~drive 6 to 10 km/h over the speed…

Where are the Public Washrooms in the City?

Walk Metro Vacouver has been pondering why this city does not have public washrooms associated with public transit, biking and walking routes.  There is a need for washrooms that are universally accessible, and some writers have described this need as a basic human right. Even the Downtown Vancouver Business Association published a map of public toilets saying …

How Did the North American Back Yard Start? Hint~It’s Not as Old as You Think

There is an exhibition currently touring from the Smithsonian titled “Patios, Pools and the Invention of the Backyard”.  Jak King has been circulating  a write-up by the Smithsonian insider which not only describes how North American culture turned from a front porch to  a “back yard” life, but also points out that this love of lawn and…

Pedestrian Priority and Australia, Where the Car is Still King

Image Sandy James If you think the car is king in Metro Vancouver and in Canada generally, you need to have a visit to Australia where both the law and the pedestrian crossing times solidly put the pedestrian as a second class citizen to vehicular traffic. The Guardian disclosed that “Pedestrians across Australia are pressing the…

Halloween, November and the Winter Pedestrian Danger Months

                        This time of year is also the danger zone for pedestrians. The Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC) observes that November, December, and January are months when vehicles crash into pedestrians, with dusk being the worst time. Even more sobering 75 per cent…

Paris Bus Driver Accessibility Hero

You find heroes in the most unlikely places. The Evening Standard  reports on the plight of Francois Le Berre who was waiting in his wheelchair to get on a bus in the suburbs of Paris. Mr. Le Berre has multiple sclerosis and needed the front area of the bus to be cleared off in order to…

Increasing Speeds on B.C. Highways Caused More Road Deaths

Image: CBC Increasing speed limits on several British Columbia highways caused  carnage and a higher accident rate and was a  failed experiment of the previous Liberal Provincial government. It has  already been written about the 118 percent increase in road deaths and 43 percent increase in vehicular claims received by ICBC, the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia….

Do Flags at Intersections Makes the Streets Safer? Halifax Thinks So.

From Halifax Nova Scotia,  The Globe and Mail reports on the “Crosswalk Safety Society” that are placing “high-visibility flags” on crosswalks where there are no crossing lights and no safety features. While staff at the Halifax Regional Municipality urged Council to get rid of these flags and create safer pedestrian crossings, council voted to continue with the…

Designing for Pedestrians and Cyclists Boon for London Retail Businesses

Of course it makes intuitive sense that active transportation users and bus commuters would frequent retail businesses more often than those constrained by  vehicles. But it is always better to have the hard facts on this data, and researchers in the City of London England have done just that. Transport for London (TfL)  in Great…