ODOT has a new safety plan out in draft and they want public comment.
|New Safety Plan
The Safety Plan still seems stuck in the 20th century, however. They invite comment and debate on the margins, but still avoid the heart of the matter. The whole framework does not yet seem adequate.
If you look at the Executive Summary, there is no connection with climate. A Safety Plan for our climate emergency would include:
- Don't drive. Only drive if you must. We are building out a robust transportation system that will no longer depend on car trips, their pollution, and their dangers.
A modern Safety Plan would also not just focus on speeding, but also on speed more generally. Even lawful driving on a street posted for 40mph is nearly certain to kill a person on foot or on bike. Customary urban speeds remain too fast. So a modern plan would also include:
- Drive more slowly. We are reducing posted speeds and roadway design speeds across all urban contexts.
Instead, the actual recommendations do everything to protect driving as a preferred activity, all too haunted by the frame of "congestion relief." (As we see in the continued debate over the I-5 Rose Quarter project. See Willamette Week's coverage for an overview.)