6.1 Pedestrian Overpasses
A pedestrian overpass allows pedestrians safe crossing over busy roads without impeding traffic.
There was a time that these grafted bits or road-related infrastructure seemed to make sense. A mark of that time was the implicit assumption that “traffic” meant cars and that it made perfect sense to give them priority over pedestrians, cyclists and anybody else who might wish to cross a busy road. That time has now passed.
This draft chapter has been taken from the latest working version of the report for the Sustainable Penang: Toward a New Mobility Agenda program. *
And if there may occasionally be arguments for some kind of crossing facility in outlying rural areas, it has long been understood by the leading edge of the transport and city planning profession that these structures have no place in towns or cities. In the 21st century the concept of giving total priority to motorized traffic is an anomaly, and given the techniques and equipment now available in order to ensure the safe passage of not only pedestrians and cyclists but also the handicapped and others suffering from mobility or sensory limitations, it should be a clear priority that no further such facilities should be built anywhere in Penang.
They are costly, unfair, visually intrusive, inefficient and ultimately dangerous. They are strident signs of reactionary, out of touch public policy. They are not worthy of the citizens of Penang. Moreover, all existing facilities need to be carefully analyzed and replaced with more effective than more democratic means of access for all.
About the report:
* Sustainable Penang: Toward a New Mobility Agenda. An independent report on the findings of a civil society enquiry based on extensive collaborative dialogues, symposia, master classes, workshops and supporting public events, with the goal of forging support for a more sustainable transport agenda to better serve all the people of Penang .The program is hosted by Think City and numerous local partners, in cooperation with EcoPlan International.
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About the editor:
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Bio: Educated as an international development economist, Eric Britton is an American political scientist, teacher and sustainability activist who has worked on missions and advisory assignments on all continents. Professor of Sustainable Development, Economy and Democracy at the Institut Supérieur de Gestion (Paris), he is also MD of EcoPlan Association, an independent advisory network providing strategic counsel for government and business on policy and decision issues involving complex systems, social-technical change, civil society and sustainable development. Founding editor of World Streets: The Politics of Transport in Cities | See Britton online at https://goo.gl/9CJXTh and @ericbritton