I’m shocked. According to a Providence Business News article:
The federal government spent more on pedestrians in the Providence metropolitan area than in any other urban region over the last three years, according to a study released Monday.
The government spent an average of $4.01 per person on bicycle and pedestrian projects annually in the Providence-New Bedford-Fall River region from 2005 to 2008, according to Transportation for America, a Washington-based coalition of transit, environmental and public health advocates.
So where has all this money gone? With stats like this, I would think Providence would be a blissful paradise for pedestrians, yet I’ve certainly spent time in other metropolitan areas and can’t draw the same qualitative conclusion. Certainly, Providence is far better than some areas, but how is it possible that Providence ranks safer than Portland, OR. After all, Portland is the pedestrian and cycling mecca.
I’m still combing my way through the Dangerous by Design report conducted by Transportation for America, but my initial reaction is one of disbelief and disconnect. One factor I’m really curious about is whether the data is normalized to reflect the number of trips made by foot or bicycle compared to the total number of trips made. I can’t believe the study wouldn’t account for this, but off the top of my head, it’s the only quick answer I can come up with.
I’d welcome thoughts and comments of the community. Please take some time, read through the report and see if it makes sense to you!