Today I discovered a photo of central area of my town BEFORE it was pedestrianised. I’d imagined it had probably always been for pedestrians and bicycles only. But no.
The photo, from the 1960s, showed a long queue of cars on the road with pedestrians precariously walking the narrow pavements. The caption below the photo noted the heavy pollution, constant traffic noise and the danger of walking in the area.
Suddenly the it makes so much sense to re-engineer areas for people who move in safe, quiet and pollution-free ways. People should be able to move around free from the threat (and smell and noise) of traffic.
A report from the Places to Go conference stresses the importance of such strategies for making the urban habitat safe for children.