Today we associate the Netherlands with top-notch bike infrastructure and some of the safest streets in the world. But 40 years ago it was tearing down buildings for parking garages and constructing wide roads through the centers of its cities and towns. It was a grassroots movement, Stop de Kindermoord (Stop the Child Murder), that turned the tide and led to the transformation of Dutch streets.
We need the same kind of transformation in the Bay Area, and we’re closer than ever to making it happen.
Deadly, car-centric streets are giving way to human-scaled designs that barely existed in America a few years ago. We’re seeing more protected bike lanes. Work is underway to expand the transit network. San Francisco, Oakland, and the rest of the Bay Area are realizing that they can’t address gridlock, housing demand, and access to jobs by building more parking and highways.
But the shift to a safe, more sustainable transportation system is just beginning. There’s still lots to do and we can’t get complacent and assume that change will take care of itself.
Streetsblog is critical to this change. Our reporting and commentary connect people to the information they need to be effective advocates for better, safer cities. Streetsblog and our readers pressure public officials to shake up the way streets work instead of letting the status quo continue.
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