Friday, November 22, 2013

Goodbye Walker Guy

A The MinusCar Project hero has died. Most people would know him as the guy they see walking all the time in the 49th St & Kiwanis Ave area. His fatal injury at 57th & Western is a reminder to me that the work of making streets more safe for riders and walkers is not only good for people who own $3000 bicycles - it is also work necessary to do for voiceless people who own shoes.

I consider it likely that this summer’s reconfiguration and added capacity of the 57th & Western intersection may have been enough to confuse a guy who'd walked through that intersection 1,000 times before. Sure, they say he was crossing against a light – as a guy who’s done a fair bit of transportational walking in this city – to me, crossing against a light means quite a few more things than simply, he was doing it wrong.

How we build our streets matters. To most of us it matters because we want to get to and from work as fast as possible because driving sucks do badly. To people like David, streets matter because walking itself is what brought him life.

To people like me it matters because a person cannot have life and liberty if the consequence of pursuing happiness is so high.

To Kevin Rogers, James McInnes and now David Stitt – I toast you all and continue to believe you all deserved better.