13.6.11

REDISCOVERING THE AMERICA THAT WORKED(TM).  New Chicago Transportation Commissioner Gabe Klein proposes to give pedestrians a break.
Klein said he’s planning to launch a massive education plan for pedestrians and bicycle riders. But, he’s not about to start punishing them.

“We want to make it safer for them before we start coming down on people,” the commissioner said.

He added, “It’s not that people want to break the law. It’s just that we’ve prioritized automobiles since post-World War II. It’s made pedestrians and cyclists feel at a distinct disadvantage. We’re gonna put the streets back closer to the way they were before the urban expressways were built in the late ’50s. We’re trying to go back to a time when things were more balanced.”

Klein’s plan to make the streets safer for pedestrians also includes what he calls “road diets” that narrow streets to slow down traffic. He also wants to crack down on speeding, particularly by taxicabs responsible for 28 percent of all accidents and reduce speed limits on residential streets, as proposed by Northwest Side Ald. Marge Laurino (39th).
No doubt the motorists' lobby will whinge about drivers being "forced" to wait longer in traffic or, horrible dictu, to buy a Metra ticket instead.

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