Most interesting is material on the OR-22/Mission Street study, which will have an Open House on the 30th.
Overall, the material shows the thinness of our imagination and the failure of our moral framework in designing and assessing roadways. Two or three generations from now, historians will look back on this stuff in amazement that we tolerated so much death and injury arising from "ordinary" and "routine" use of the public space we call a "road."
First off, in our official approach to design and assessment we're still stuck on eliminating the moral and effective agency of human drivers ostensibly in charge of a motor vehicle moving swiftly with lethal power.
|Shouldn't the dead have a name and face?|
Existing conditions memo with comments added
And the human error was compounded by roadway design intent. It was on a roadway posted and designed for highway speeds, speeds we know are almost certain to kill a person exposed while walking or biking. At 20mph, running the red light might have given Jordan enough time for an evasive maneuver, or let the driver brake or make a steering recovery, or mitigated the severity of the crash so at least he didn't lose his life. In every way, speed kills.
But because we insist on a system of hydraulic autoism that privileges free-flowing and fluid auto traffic, his death is just noise in the system, the speed that caused death the necessary flowing action to avoid congestion.When we choose urban street design speed, we choose how many peds it's OK to kill in a crash http://t.co/lletYPL1Oi pic.twitter.com/LDdcQUt8tO— Jeffrey Tumlin (@jeffreytumlin) April 7, 2015
|"level of saturation of the intersection"|
Classic expression of hydraulic autoism!
|85th percentile speeds = Drivers routinely exceed 50mph here|
From the Existing Conditions memo and City of Salem
In the Long-range Transportation Strategy section (years beyond 2030), it is recommended that OR 22 may become a limited access facility through the Salem Urban Area. One improvement identified in the long-range plan is a new interchange at Cordon Road which should become part of a series of grade-separated interchanges at Cordon Road SE, Lancaster Drive SE, InterstateS, and Hawthorne Avenue SE. Another improvement would be to eliminate driveway accesses along Mission Street SE/OR 22 between Hawthorne Avenue SE and Church Street SE and instead have a system of frontage roads to provide access to properties lacking frontage on side streets. [italics added]That's like Kuebler or the Salem Parkway. That's a pretty bleak vision of autoism, and will create a canyon impeding north-south connectivity across Mission Street.
This is a great reason for the State to devolve funding and control of "urban highways" to the cities. For all the criticism here of the City of Salem, I'd still rather have City Council rather than ODOT making decisions about Mission Street/OR-22 inside the city limits.
A lot of the impetus for the project is "freight."
Interestingly, it turns out there are reasons to question our analytical framework also for freight.
At the Active Transportation Summit this week, economist Joe Cortright presented a new critique (at least one new here).
“The cargo cult” is what @Joe_Cortright calls the vast media and lobbying conspiracy behind pushing freight projects #atsummit— BikePortland (@BikePortland) March 14, 2016
#atsummit Joe Cortright ties declining freight and lack of need for CRC in one slide. pic.twitter.com/wdxMoxEFKI— Roger Geller (@Why_Not_Bikes) March 14, 2016
Back to bike things, in the "Future Conditions and Needs Memo" there is a brief assessment of the sidewalks and bike lanes.
Although there currently is not a large pedestrian and bicycle demand in the area, the volumes may be suppressed due to the unfavorable facilities that are currently provided.But it also lacks the same kind of rudimentary multi-modal "level of service" analysis that the same consultant performed for the Commercial-Vista Corridor Study.
You can see how having as a client the highway branch of ODOT instead of the TGM group makes a substantial difference in the resulting memos and conclusions.
It seems clear that improved sidewalks and bike lanes and crossing facilities will be secondary considerations, things wedged in on the margins after the primary flow for auto traffic is assured.
The Open House for the Mission Street/OR-22 project will be Wednesday, March 30th from 4 pm to 6:30 pm in Fire Station Number 6, 2742 25th Street SE (next to the Salem Airport).
|Look for the historic sign|
next to the entry
SKATS meets Tuesday the 22nd at noon. SKATS is at 100 High St. SE, Suite 200, above Bar Andaluz and Table Five 08.