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My take on roads and driving

Date: 2013-03-10
Tags: transportation

A few days ago I was ranting to Anne while we were out walking about how much I hated cars. I was wrong. I hate the overuse of cars in our society. I hate the noise, smells, pollution, and aggressiveness that cars bring.

“Traffic is thought to behave more like a gas than a liquid-it expands to fill available space1.” While not a completely correct quite since the number of moles of a gas remain constant, it gets the point across to the layman. One thing I would love to do is to create simulations of my neighborhood based on actual traffic patterns, and parts of the surrounding ones, and create one-way corridors arranged in a circle, so that everything remains navigable. This would allow an existing lane and possibly the parking in that lane to be used for transit and/or bikes.

The one down-side I could see, especially for the road in front of my house, is that the emergency room entrance to the hospital across from me is on this road and while emergency vehicles would obviously be able to use a transit lane, someone taking someone else to the hospital could not and it would cause delays and confusion, especially since they’re already stressed.

I would also be in favour of a fee placed on any car entering the city. If the cities/boroughs to the east of the city, e.g.: Wilkinsburg, Edgewood, and Swissvale, got involved, the toll booths could be placed on their extremities and revenue from them shared. Obviously local merchants may not like this plan very much, but if the fee was sufficiently low, say $1 or $2 per car, it shouldn’t drive too many drivers away, though the ROI would be longer. The money from these tolls could be placed towards PAT.

1 Road Expansion, Urban Growth, and Induced TravelAPA Journal” Vol 69 No. 2 Pg. 145-163 [Online Accessed 2013-03-10]