December 22, 2004

Thinking outside the intersection

Hans Monderman is a Dutch traffic engineer who has hit upon the idea of making roads safer and more efficient by making them feel more dangerous.

The Planning Livable Communities blog summarizes and quotes from a Wired article:

In one Dutch village, “what was once a conventional road junction with traffic lights has been turned into something resembling a public square that mixes cars, pedestrians, and cyclists.” Those on foot, bicycle and motor vehicle have shared the space without serious accident since 1999.

This trend is actually making its way across the Atlantic to a few select portions of the New World. “In the US, traffic engineers are beginning to rethink the dictum that the car is king and pedestrians are well advised to get the hell off the road. In West Palm Beach, Florida, planners have redesigned several major streets, removing traffic signals and turn lanes, narrowing the roadbed, and bringing people and cars into much closer contact. The result: slower traffic, fewer accidents, shorter trip times,” the Wired article notes.

Posted by jackhodgson at December 22, 2004 09:41 PM