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Thread: Great opinion piece in NYT – The Pedestrian Strikes Back

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hancockbs View Post
    They lost me with a parked car taking up 350 square feet. Something that simple to validate and yet being incorrect leads little credence to the rest of their arguments.
    Google says the average is 320 square feet. That's only off by approximately 10%. I'm not sure I'd trash their argument on that basis. http://www.dimensionsinfo.com/dimens...parking-space/

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    Quote Originally Posted by Crickey7 View Post
    Google says the average is 320 square feet. That's only off by approximately 10%. I'm not sure I'd trash their argument on that basis. http://www.dimensionsinfo.com/dimens...parking-space/
    Google says that in one spot, but there are plenty of others that say considerably less. The average seems to be closer to "Typically they fall between 7.5 to 9 feet wide and 10 to 20 feet long. The most common size is 8.5 feet wide by 19 feet long." At the most, that is 9x20=180 or 51% of the stated area. Also if this is about parking in the city and taking up pedestrian space, I would ask you to look at how closely spaced parked cars are on a typical city street. The average sedan is roughly 7 x 17 or 119 square feet. Bottom line, 350, be it 10% over or 100% over is still over and is therefore spun to help the author's point of view.

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    Quote Originally Posted by VikingMariner View Post
    Now you're just making up facts (that are false) about our history and car ownership. Here are some facts: https://www.statista.com/statistics/...es-since-1951/.
    You can't go by car sales, because cars then had shorter service lives. You need to go by car ownership.

    https://nacto.org/wp-content/uploads...on-34_2015.pdf

    Look at table 8.2
    vehicles per capita roughly tripled between 1950 and the early 2000s and vehicles per household doubled. (yes, way back when not only were there more car free households, but middle class households typically had only one car - associated with fewer two income families, less reliance on the auto for neighborhood trips, fewer teens and young adults with cars, etc). Note vehicle miles per capita also tripled.

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    180 s.f. is the actual parking space itself. The 320 s.f. estimate includes the circulation aisles, separators and infrastructure that serves the parking. If you use the 180 s.f. figure, you wind up massively undercounting the space requirements for parking that the 320 s.f. figure aggregates, then averages.

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    "That brings my old man rant to an end. I wrote this thing to perhaps provoke thought in a new direction that the usual rubric that all car owners suck" I am a car owner. We have no intention of giving up our car anytime soon. However I believe that in making local decisions on street space, on development, on parking requirements, we lean over too far to the assumption that cars must dominate. Rebalancing does not mean eliminating cars or ambulances or trucks. I also think that counting on electric vehicles to solve the problem of GHGs related to auto usage is unwise.

    I also think any major investment in expanding capacity in the northeast corridor is almost certainly better spent on rail. Highway expenditures (beyond restoration to state of good repair) may well be needed in many parts of the country, but the northeast corridor is probably the one where the relative benefits of passenger rail are the highest.

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    Quote Originally Posted by VikingMariner View Post
    Now you're just making up facts (that are false) about our history and car ownership. Here are some facts: https://www.statista.com/statistics/...es-since-1951/.
    I'll stop quoting here because it makes even less sense the further you go. So you linked to something that wants me to pay $50 to even begin to guess at your point. No thanks. I'm not sure what you think is false, either. Here's a legit source: https://cta.ornl.gov/data/tedbfiles/.../Table8_02.xls

    Note that in 1950 there were .29 cars per capita, in 2015 there were .82 cars per capita. In 1950 there were .74 cars per employed person, in 2015 there were 1.78 cars per employed person. That is a huge difference. When my family lived in what's now a car-choked inner suburb back in the 50's their fairly typical middle class family of 4 (later 5 then 6) had 1 car which spent most of its time in the driveway while the breadwinner took the bus into the city. Population density at the time was higher than it is today, but vehicle density was much lower. Widening the arterials has made it much harder to walk (or bike) and has hammered property values along the biggest roads, but hasn't "fixed" the traffic. Roads that used to have kids playing on them now have speed bumps due to the people trying to avoid the arterials. The only way to "fix" the traffic in your outdated paradigm is to tear down houses and put in more freeways. Or you can subscribe to wishful thinking like putting cars in tunnels, which is a fiscal fantasy.

    Or, in the new paradigm, you shift people away from single occupancy vehicles and let them have an option to walk or bike the way they could 65 years ago.

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    Quote Originally Posted by lordofthemark View Post
    "That brings my old man rant to an end. I wrote this thing to perhaps provoke thought in a new direction that the usual rubric that all car owners suck" I am a car owner. We have no intention of giving up our car anytime soon. However I believe that in making local decisions on street space, on development, on parking requirements, we lean over too far to the assumption that cars must dominate.
    For the record, I also have cars--but I think public policy should be based on things other than "what's best for my car".

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    Quote Originally Posted by VikingMariner View Post
    Just like the W&OD should be three or four times as wide so too should I-95 corridor from Boston to Richmond and I-66 (or perhaps have a Boring Company underground portion) to match the population growth in the DC metro area over the last few decades, for example.
    Yes, that worked perfectly for Atlanta with its 12 lane freeways, where I understand there is no traffic congestion at all.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Quote Originally Posted by Crickey7 View Post
    180 s.f. is the actual parking space itself. The 320 s.f. estimate includes the circulation aisles, separators and infrastructure that serves the parking. If you use the 180 s.f. figure, you wind up massively undercounting the space requirements for parking that the 320 s.f. figure aggregates, then averages.
    Agree, but that is considering a parking lot vice on street parking, which seems much more applicable to this discussion.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mstone View Post
    For the record, I also have cars--but I think public policy should be based on things other than "what's best for my car".
    Exactly. It should be what's best for the entire transportation system--multiple modal. But the notion that if we improve and expand our transportation system in DC metro, including new and better roads--that will simply result in more cars rest on a fallacious assumption that is not supported by the data. Car ownership in this country has been on the decline for decades. It is, however, an effect excuse to state and local leaders to avoid the hard choices on how money is spent. Population shifts away from, for example, the rust belt to other parts of the country cannot be ignored. By not investing and expanding in all forms of transportation to adapt to the population growth in NOVA, DC, and Maryland is akin to recognizing you have cancer, blaming your cancer treatment drugs for cancer, and resorting to a good old fashion bloodletting for the cure. The sociological effects in part manifest in things like road rage, against cyclists, motorists, etc. And now we can thank some in the news media for exploiting a few of us into believing the transportation system must be a zero-sum game between cars and bikes, which is absurd.

  18. 12-19-2018, 11:09 AM


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