Tuesday, August 29, 2017

D-Day for Two-Way: The newspaper's Morris inches toward the reversion bandwagon.

Somehow they didn't crash.

Chris Morris does a good job with his column, especially considering his previously stated opposition to two-way streets.

Moris seems to be developing a belated appreciation that vehicular speed kills, which should be axiomatic for a runner, as with someone like me walking and biking. But we've all observed for years that automobile-centrism has a corrosive effect on sensibility, and I'm happy to see him in recovery. Been there, done that.

I can help him with this point:

Let’s face it, none of us has ever had to look in both directions of Spring before crossing the street. So we all are going to have to get used to that. To me, only having to look in one direction for oncoming traffic seems easier and safer. But with vehicles traveling at a slower rate of speed, maybe it won’t be too difficult to get used to.

When I see comments like this, I try to find credible instances of a counter-argument, preferably based on research as opposed to opinion. Then again, I'm just a blogger -- not a journalist.

The explanation of why conventional wisdom is mistaken begins on page 10. Hint: it has to do with conflict sequences.

Downtown Streets: Are We Strangling Ourselves on One-Way Networks?

The conventional wisdom has always assumed that one-way streets were safer and more comfortable for pedestrians to cross than two-way streets. Superficially, it would seem that crossing the single direction of traffic on a one-way street is always preferable to crossing a two-way street. As is often the case, the conventional wisdom is wrong. In fact, crossing a one-way street presents greater difficulties to the pedestrian than crossing a two-way street.

Make no mistake; it's a very good effort from Morris. If true, his summary, "I think the majority are more like me — we accept it and hope it works out for the best and takes New Albany to another level of success," works just fine for me. It is reminiscent of Kadar's Axiom: "If you're not against us, you're for us."


MORRIS: Buckle up — New Albany street conversion begins today
, by Chris Morris (News and Tribune)

NEW ALBANY — I have to admit I was never a huge fan of converting downtown streets in New Albany from one-way to two-way traffic. Maybe I am too stuck in the past, or just a little skeptical how it will benefit businesses.

I am still a little bit hesitant to jump on board the two-way street conversion bus. But I am open to it and hope it turns out to be all that it is supposed to be.

I do know one thing it will do — slow traffic. We all have gotten a taste of what Spring Street will be like in recent weeks with only one lane of traffic open to drivers heading west. And as someone who walks and jogs along Spring Street regularly, that is a good thing. Three lanes of traffic heading in one direction did resemble a speedway on occasion. Hopefully the traffic lights will keep traffic flowing and not cause congestion during rush hour. We don’t want people to avoid our downtown because of traffic issues.

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