‘Slow Lanes’ Could be Key to Increased Mobility in Cities
UNITED STATES – An article online at forbes.com discusses the concept of “slow lanes” and how they could be the key to increased mobility in U.S. cities.*
The author of the article, Gabe Klein, is the co-founder of Cityfi, an urban change management firm, and former leader of the departments of transportation in Washington, D.C., and Chicago. In the last several years, transportation within larger cities has changed. More people are walking, biking, and riding scooters and skateboards to navigate to work and shopping areas. To accommodate the influx of new transportation, many cities have invested in designated bike lanes.
Klein argues these lanes are a beneficial addition to cities, but all cities should be moving in the direction of building “slow lanes,” rather than bike lanes. Most bike lanes are very narrow and do not offer a great amount of protection on the road. They usually sit right against regular traffic lanes and barely have enough room for a single bicycle.
With developing types of transportation, cities should start revamping their typical four-lane streets to feature two lanes for cars and two lanes for slower traffic, like bikes and scooters. This ensures the safety of those using the slow lanes and opens up more possibilities for diverse transportation. Slower speeds and fewer cars mean safer roads and cleaner air inside cities — things everyone can benefit from.
Some cities in the country have already started experimenting with slow lanes, and buy-in from motorists proves a difficult obstacle. But the future of cities depends on a willingness to accept changing attitudes and desires about transportation. The era of the scooter is here, whether cities like it or not.
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