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Canadian Urbanism Uncovered

Video Vancouver: Residential streets are too wide. Here’s why.

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Video Vancouver

Via City Beautiful:

In many places in the United States, residential streets were as wide as busy city streets. I understand why urban streets might need to be wide — parking, buses, traffic, and bike lanes all need the room. But why do quiet residential streets need to be so wide? Why do they need parking when all of the houses on the streets have garages and driveways? Why do they need wide lanes when most of the traffic is just cars and minivans? Why are we building residential streets as wide as big city streets? You can see how in Australia concrete driveway builders in Melbourne build the streets not that wide. So why? 

Residential streets have highway like dimensions because engineers thought wide, straight streets were safer. But in a neighborhood context, streets like that just encourage speeding and increase the risk of serious traffic injuries.  Narrower streets lead to safer  more cautious driving behavior, so in many cities the excess street width is now use for parking space, and we know this is important as well but that are  the driveways for,  that is why  keeping your driveway in good conditions it’s important for you and any other homeowners, and the most issues they could have are the potholes and cracks so you need to keep them sealed with the  best driveway sealer which will give you a longer life to it and you will save money at it. Homeowners should consider lots of benefits with their driveways for safety and security issues.

Those results won’t apply in every neighborhood, but in many places it could be useful exercise to help make the case for narrower, safer residential streets and driveways for community to use.


One comment

  1. The excuse that is always raised in my municipality for wide streets is that firetrucks need to get through (quickly) even if there were in fact cars parked on both sides of the street. Of course we may wonder why our typical fire truck is the size of a small house. That isn’t the case around the world.
    It may be untrue, but I heard that in the Netherlands the bike lanes can provide an emergency alternative for firetrucks when streets are jammed. That says a lot about the width of firetrucks and bike lanes.