But Why Do You Want Complete Streets?

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From a briefing on Complete Streets the council will discuss during tomorrow's meeting
Actually, you probably just want better streets -- most of Dallas does. But a Complete Streets PowerPoint prepared for tomorrow's council briefing, during which redistricting will probably eat up most of the morning, reveals the findings of a Collective Strength survey conducted in August by Promark Research, during which 518 citizens were asked about their "perceptions and desires regarding transportation and streets."

The results can be found here, beginning on Page 30; you can scan the specifics for yourself. So let's jump right to The Bottom Line:
Significant opportunity exists in Dallas to gain widespread public support for Complete Streets if safety, health and economic development benefits are also emphasized along with maintenance of existing streets. The vast majority (over 90%) of surveyed residents support sustainable communities with more transportation choices, access to shops, schools and jobs close by, energy efficiency and improved air and water quality. The most important cited reasons for wanting Complete Streets include being safer, being healthier, boosting the economy and saving money on gas.
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3rd Wheel Marketing
3rd Wheel Marketing

I guess we're part of the zero percent:http://getbent-sc.com/08to09pi...

And if you people in cars would stop pulling out in front of us, trying to get in front of us because you think we're slow (but we can go 65mph), weaving into us while on your phones, going across the lane because you think "pretending" to hit us head on is funny... you can keep laughing at us-I could give a shit.

Catbird
Catbird

oops! Did I mention Laura Miller too?

Catbird
Catbird

What about all those pot holes Laura Miller was going to fill? Why not start there?

Montemalone
Montemalone

In order to get people out of cars, we have change the mandatory parking requirements for buildings.If somebody wants to open a business in an older (inner city) neighborhood, let him. Requiring parking lots means people will fill them with cars.No parking means people will use other means to get there.If they don't, business fails.It's funny, Chicago, where I used to live, seems to have more people, and more cars, than Dallas, but it's dense. And parking isn't free. Shouldn't be. Land isn't free.

TimCov
TimCov

Lower Greenville has proved this wrong. People will just park on/in front of other people's property.

Anonymous
Anonymous

if they park in someone else's property, call the police and have them arrested for trespass. the city streets don't belong to the people who own the houses. 

Anonymous
Anonymous

semantics. if you own something but lack the ability to do a damn thing with it, your ownership has no value.would you buy a car from me that will be leased in perpetuity by someone who will pay you no rent? no. there are laws - enacted by the city - that prevent parking in front of a driveway. you can't just build a driveway across the width of your lot and expect the city to enforce it. in fact, you will then be the one with a problem with the city. they'll be asking you to put the grass back where it belongs and fining you for putting a driveway in without a permit.I don't agree with RPO as matter of policy, but it is the city that is within its rights to sell the spaces back to the neighbors if they so choose. I think that the city is basically giving away a valuable asset to a favored group for less than the market would bear, but that's just me. it has nothing to do with the rights of the homeowners or property owners.

TimCov
TimCov

Actually, they do. If you look at the actual property lines, the usually go to the middle of the street and the city/county has an easement that allows them to build a road there. In the lower Greenville area the homeowners successfully fought for resident only parking because of the problems this caused. And, If you truly believe that you can park anywhere on a residential street you want to, park so that you are blocking someone's driveway. I've seen people's car's towed away by the police when they have done that.

GusMitchem
GusMitchem

DART catches a lot of shit because folks generall compare Dallas Area to the pre-automobile cities of the East, lets not forget that our metro area was laid out for the car weve bulldozed homes for the car and we are still dedicated to the car.

We cant become a different city unless you want to tear down buildings and move them closer together. Look at our most pedestrian area (Uptown) it has two sets of three lane one way blvds running right throught it (McKinney/ Lemmon)  

Will R
Will R

DART catches a lot of shit because they've built their whole system around the idea that people live in the inner suburbs and commute to downtown for work, and that hasn't been true since the 80s.  Their rail service is OK if you live/work close to a station, but the cross-town buses are just abominably slow.

Guest
Guest

DART > Rail.  The problem is that the people clammering for better public transportation think they are too good to ride a bus. 

TimCov
TimCov

No, the problem is DART's bus routes and service stinks. Taking a bus from Northwest Highway and Plano Road to Greenville and Lovers should be as simple as an east bound bus to Greenville and a south bound bus (or rail) to Lovers. Instead, because the routes meander all over the place, you are looking at at least 2 (if not more) transfers.

TimCov
TimCov

I think that DART would be much more useful if it was more reliable and had better crosstown service. I have a friend who moved up here a month ago from Houston. He lives in an apartment at Northwest Highway and Plano Road. He works at Lovers and Greenville. He works weekends. Because of late buses he has been late to work twice and I have had to come pick him up a couple of times. Also his commute generally runs about an hour or more. When you consider that this is a 15-25 minute drive, why would anyone who has a choice take DART?

GusMitchem
GusMitchem

DART is supposed to be a choice ?

TimCov
TimCov

There are times I choose to use it (generally any time I want to go downtown or to Fair Park). For my friend, it isn't a choice. If there was better crosstown service, I would probably use it more often. 

Anonymous
Anonymous

Are "libtarding" or "hipstering" a verb? That's why I want complete streets.

Guest
Guest

Most of the folks suggesting they have an interest in biking and walking are the same people who have treadmills in their houses collecting dust.  It sounds great in the abstract, but reality sets in after the first or second attempt.  Is there any city in the English speaking world where 24% of the population uses bikes or walks to work without using public transportation (I know it's much more common in Aisa)? 

Dallas has fairly decent public transportation.  The problem is that it might require riding on a bus.  If people won't use the public transportation we have, what makes you think they will regularly use something else?  And at what cost?  

Which brings me to the conclusion:  "Existing Preference for Driving but Demand Exists for other Options if More Convenient."  People will almost always choose the more convenient option.  In Dallas, that choice is almost always driving.  That isn't going to change by improving public transportation or biking.  The only way to make those options more convenient than driving is to make driving less convenient.  That is the objective of most of the Complete Streets supporters, and that objective would be opposed by 80% of respondents if the question were asked. 

Gabe
Gabe

People don't choose the most convenient. They choose the best value. A tremendous portion of operating a car is actually externalized (the costs of the roads, the military costs of protecting/acquiring oil sources and supply lines, subsidies to industries,  healthcare costs associated with CO, hydrocarbons, and the nitrogen oxides found in exhaust fumes, and land use negatives) and another huge portion is functionally externalized (it's hard for most people to operationally conceptualize the relationship between the cost of the car, the insurance, and the maintenance with the per-mile benefit). The result is that most people only think about "How much gas will this cost me? 2 bucks to get downtown and 2 to get back? Well, it's $4 for the train, and that takes 10 minutes longer." So they grab the keys, because it looks like the best value.

A parallel is the use of corn syrup in, well, nearly everything you can get from a drive-thru, but let's consider soda. For most people, it isn't their true preference (though maybe I'm wrong) as a sweetener, it's just their preference at that price point - which happens to be heavily subsidized. Lots of people actually pay more for Dublin Dr Pepper because they like the real sugar. Take away the subsidy from corn, then we could figure out what people's TRUE preferences are. Same thing with roads. Make each system of travel pay for their own costs (or least equalize the subsidy on a per-mile basis) and I think you'll have a lot more people choosing they buses and bikes and sidewalks. But that's just a guess.

GusMitchem
GusMitchem

Right saying "I support" really isnt supporting, kinda like saying I believe in God and actually being religious, peer pressure is a bitch

YourFace
YourFace

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Downtown_worker
Downtown_worker

Dear City of Dallas:1. Thank you for repaving Ross. Now can we please do the same with Lemmon and Henderson?2. Can we hurry up and convert those downtown one-way streets to two-way like you said you would a year ago?3. Who does one have to blow in order to get a bike lane? 

GusMitchem
GusMitchem

Lemmon (Between Love and Live Oak) is a death trap. Might be better reverted to caliche  

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