Jim Aloisi and Tanzeel Merchant write about the safety myth in roadway design, and how wider roads are actually not safer:
Safe walking and biking ought to be a right, not a privilege. A spate of recent tragedies involving pedestrians and bicyclists points to the urgent need to make mobility safety a critical element of new focus. If you hit a pedestrian at 20 mph, 5 percent will die; at 30 mph, 45 percent will die; at 40 mph, 85 percent will die.
The era of highway expansion is over. Our future lies in creating a truly multi-modal transportation network — a robust menu of meaningful choices that enable people to pick-and-choose among modes and make walking and bicycling real mobility options. The Safety Impact Review will go a long way in ensuring that the infrastructure we invest in today delivers the kinds of cities we want tomorrow for ourselves and for future generations.
I'm not so keen on adding another layer of review to projects (they tend to mostly enrich specialized consultants), but the points in the piece are well-taken.