There are several interesting details in them, and they might be worth your time. In some cases the details might complicate the urge to flatten things with over-simple narratives about need and meeting the need. (Humans are complicated!)
A couple of transportation things also stand out.
- Census data shows that 18% of North Salem residents do not have access to a vehicle
- The survey shows that 85% of respondents use their car get their groceries. However, 45% of respondents [also] use an alternative form of transportation, at least part of the time. About 18% walk.
Making better conditions for walking and biking and busing isn't just about serving some car-skeptical elite. It's about serving a very large portion of our citizenry. It's about fairness.
(Biking is a complicated cultural symbol right now. There is the paradigm of the leisured spandex-clad hobbyist on an expensive bike, as well as the paradigm of the semi-homeless can collector on a bike missing brakes. Autoist discourse uses both sets of stereotypes - and flavors in between - to marginalize people who bike. Police also use enforcement differently, and Streetsblog recently discussed a study of citations from New York City between 2007 and 2015 that showed meaningful differences in policing by neighborhood income and rider ethnicity. When we talk about biking, we are often also talking about other things, many of them hidden to one degree or another.)
|Commercial and Kuebler (click to enlarge)|
Wealthy and privileged white people in South Salem get millions for a fancy new intersection and interchange to subsidize their expensive autoist habit while brown folks in North Salem fight to survive on inhumane Stroads just to feed their families. Oh yeah.... when wealthy white West Salemites need to save a few minutes on their evening commutes, the City pushes the new highway right though the same brown folks neighborhood. Salem in a nutshell.
Thank goodness for the few grocery stores that provide free shuttle vans for patrons.
Biking is good, but not a realistic option for many people.
We need more realistic options for the poor.
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