Sunday, May 14, 2023

College and Walnut survey responses.

The city is planning another study of College and Walnut streets. These are two streets through the middle of downtown Bloomington which were last redesigned in the car-drunk 60's or 70's, resulting in two three-lane, one-way, high-speed corridors slicing through the downtown and causing pollution, noise, and dangerous walking conditions. They desperately need to be redesigned to a more environmentally friendly standard. Our new city council will probably have the final say on any changes to be made as a result of this survey, which I think is an encouraging prospect - several members of the current council would be much more car-friendly. The study is discussed on the city's transportation plan web page here: at least as I write this. They ask for feedback through the traditional Google document, so I filled it out as follows:

Do you use College or Walnut regularly? If so, why? And what mode do you usually use (walking, strolling, bicycling, transit, driving, etc.)?

Yes, because it's unavoidable. Walk, bike, and drive

What do you think is currently working well on College or Walnut? What do you enjoy about the streets? 

Not much.

What do you think needs improving on College or Walnut? What situations do you find yourself in on those streets that are frustrating to you? 

The sidewalks should be much wider, there should be better bike support and fewer lanes for cars. Space reserved for car storage should have the prices adjusted dynamically based on demand, with the funds returned to the downtown area for improvements.

What is important to you about College or Walnut? What is important to you in regards to any changes proposed for the streets? 

Cars should be going much slower. There is no justification for cars going 40-50 miles an hour through an intersection where pedestrians are trying to get across. Note that this will not be solved by simply lowering the speed limits - the streets need to be designed such that driving at a killing speed is nearly impossible.

Any other comments you would like to share: 

Level of Service is not a relevant metric for these streets - only pedestrian safety should be considered.

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