Friday, November 13, 2009

Metro Orlando Most Dangerous for Pedestrians in the Nation

Typical road sprawl on Colonial Drive--Economically failing and unsuitable for pedestrians

Colonial Drive--An Alternative Vision (Courtesy: Canin Associates)

The report released this week by the Surface Transportation Policy Partnership ranks Metro Orlando #1 in the nation for pedestrian danger. The report states 50% of pedestrian deaths are occurring on road sprawl. Instead of balancing the needs of motorists and pedestrians, we're engineering roads with the dimensions and encouraging the speeds of interstate highways. Click HERE to link to the report.

In its lead editorial this morning ("Walk the Walk, Nov. 13) the Orlando Sentinel correctly identifies poor planning as a culprit and suggests more vertical mixed-use development, like in Chicago and Portland, instead of sprawl development patterns.

However, our zoning laws make that illegal in many instances.

Central Florida's local governments should look to the example set by Miami last September--a comprehensive new zoning code that integrates road planning with creating attractive, pedestrian-oriented environments. Click HERE to link to Miami's new zoning code website.