Ben Bartosik

February 8, 2024

There was another really good part in the podcast on alternative modes of travel that I was listening to the other day in which one of the speakers was noting that in many of the more suburban areas in Europe that she had visited, the speed limits were reduced to 30km/hour and high fines were imposed. Kids were then free to play in the streets without fear of cars speeding through them. However, what stood out to me the most was the way she described cars as guests in the streets.

What I have noticed in my day-to-day travels is that most drivers seem to feel a certain entitlement to the streets, as though it is by default their space and everyone else is an inconvenience to their needs. This mindset is ever expanding to the point where it is barely challenged; and, I assume many drivers would scoff at the idea that streets weren't made solely for their vehicles. But, as I have noted before, this is not the way it always was.

The thing I liked about this is that it's a relatively inexpensive infrastructure change to make. Smaller communities could easily make this change. In fact, with proper enforcement, it could be a bit of a money maker for a while as drivers get accustomed to this change. Of course drivers will bristle at this, but tackling car dependency is a major multisolving opportunity for us.