Sunday, February 17 2008 @ 04:58 AM EST
Contributed by: B' Spokes
- Mark C
Several weeks ago the BBJ editorialized about the recommendations in the city's Southeast Area [dumb] Transportation Plan. To the plan's credit, it includes ideas about bikes, pedestrians and transit, but the overwhelming theme, and those most likely to be implemented, are to further optimize the streets and intersections of Canton, Fells Point and Harbor East to handle increasing car commuter traffic.
The editorial, and the ethos around here, seems to be "since we don't have better transit, and I drive everywhere anyway, we need more highways and parking." I hope that more and more people will speak out about these car oriented policies- but perhaps more importantly, Baltimore needs a lot more leadership by example!
Don't let more traffic bog down development in city's east side
Baltimore Business Journal
The BBJ's editorial "East-Side Success has its Downside" [Vol. 25, Jan. 25-31, Page 55] is based on the impossible assumption that you can build a vibrant city where everyone travels by car.
The editorial echoes recommendations of a study, the southeast area transportation plan, based on highway-oriented traffic models, inappropriate for an urban setting. The suggestion to widen roads and remove street parking values commuter traffic over neighborhood quality of life and safety.
Maryland has plenty of places where the car is king and walking is difficult or impossible. So why should we take some of Baltimore's most charming urban neighborhoods and try to superimpose suburban-style highways and traffic? Why should inner neighborhoods suffer so long distance commuters can save some time?
Consider the damage done by turning Mount Vernon's streets into high speed traffic sewers, or by building a lifeless canyon of parking garages on Lombard. Should we make those same mistakes in southeast Baltimore?
People flock to the city, especially vibrant waterfront neighborhoods, because it is possible to walk to lunch, people-watch from a sidewalk caf