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Old 09-27-04, 01:51 PM   #1
Dahon.Steve
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Suburban sprawl linked to chronic ailments

There's a new study that just came out stating that living in the burbs where you are drive everywhere have health characteristics similar to someone four years older who lives in a more compact city. In other words, biking and walking made you healthy.

http://wcbs880.com/nynews/NY--Sprawl...rces_news_html
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Old 09-27-04, 02:33 PM   #2
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Another kind of ailment..Can be fatal..Sort of related to life in the burbs...Last Wednesday, my employer made me attend a Defensive driving course..The course had to address the current topic of 'Road Rage' In America that can have serious consequences.
The study done by statistics from the California Department of Motor Vehicles compared road rage arrests for urban counties. The counties of Alameda, Contra Costa, San Bernandino, Riverside had significantly higher road rage arrests, than even the largest urban counties...
Road rage, mental illness - I consider a mental disorder. These are all suburban counties where suburban sprawl is totally out of order and traffic gridlock the worst.
When cyclists give some wild eyed motorists the finger, remember road rage can be fatal.
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Old 09-27-04, 03:00 PM   #3
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Got to see this movie. The End of Suburbia.
http://www.endofsuburbia.com/index.htm
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Old 09-27-04, 03:15 PM   #4
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Got to see this movie. The End of Suburbia.
http://www.endofsuburbia.com/index.htm
I wonder if you can rent that film? Maybe Nexflix might carry it someday.

I think there a ton of people who live in suburbia that have loads of money and those folks can probably hold out forever. It's those who are on the edge or broke that will have to move back to the cities.
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Old 09-27-04, 03:20 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by cyclezealot
Another kind of ailment..Can be fatal..Sort of related to life in the burbs...Last Wednesday, my employer made me attend a Defensive driving course..The course had to address the current topic of 'Road Rage' In America that can have serious consequences.
The study done by statistics from the California Department of Motor Vehicles compared road rage arrests for urban counties. The counties of Alameda, Contra Costa, San Bernandino, Riverside had significantly higher road rage arrests, than even the largest urban counties...
Road rage, mental illness - I consider a mental disorder. These are all suburban counties where suburban sprawl is totally out of order and traffic gridlock the worst.
When cyclists give some wild eyed motorists the finger, remember road rage can be fatal.
Speaking of California, they just passed legislation that will force cars to stricter emissions. The Bush administration and the auto are going to take the issue to court in the hopes of getting a reversal.
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Old 09-27-04, 06:40 PM   #6
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Steve.This has been a long standing issue here...You would think the right of state's rights would allow special circumstances for our unique geography and the resulting air standards needed to protect our urban dwellers. Appears not.
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Old 09-28-04, 01:48 PM   #7
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Speaking of California, they just passed legislation that will force cars to stricter emissions. The Bush administration and the auto are going to take the issue to court in the hopes of getting a reversal.
Traditionally, only directly health-related emissions, such as CO, which binds to hemoglobin, and NOx and hydrocarbons, which give rise to toxic NO2, ozone, and HNO3 in the atmosphere, have been regulated by the EPA. The new legislation in California differs radically by specifically covering CO2, a greenhouse gas, which can be controlled only by improving fuel economy or by changing power sources entirely. As usual, California law is attempting to move ahead of Federal.

The automotive and petroleum industries are upset because they see this as an end run to increase fuel economy standards. With petroleum reserves running out during the next generation, we need to pay a little more attention to this issue.
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Old 09-28-04, 02:01 PM   #8
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i love cars. i really do. one of my greatest fascinations is my gas-hogging 1968 GTO. but i also think there are too many cars on the road. i do not drive every day, and ride my bike for errands and commuting as much as possible. europeans pay nearly $6. american equivalent per gallon of gasoline. they feel the pain. maybe america needs to feel the pain, as well. how about rationing? impossible, yes, but just for the sake of conjecture, visualize an america where each licensed driver may only purchase 10 gallons of gas per week. wouldn't it be wonderful?
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Old 09-28-04, 04:55 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by eurotrash666
i love cars. i really do. one of my greatest fascinations is my gas-hogging 1968 GTO. but i also think there are too many cars on the road. i do not drive every day, and ride my bike for errands and commuting as much as possible. europeans pay nearly $6. american equivalent per gallon of gasoline. they feel the pain. maybe america needs to feel the pain, as well. how about rationing? impossible, yes, but just for the sake of conjecture, visualize an america where each licensed driver may only purchase 10 gallons of gas per week. wouldn't it be wonderful?
Your post is really about responsible use of resources, e.g. walk or ride a bike when that is practical, saving the car for long trips or heavy payloads. I prefer raising the price of gasoline over rationing, but would hope for the same result that you do.

Incidentally, living in the 'burbs, as I do, is merely an EXCUSE not to integrate exercise with transportation, as I also do daily.

My all-time favourite automobile ad showed a closed garage door, while the announcer talked about people who care about the environment choosing certain cars. The garage door opens, revealing a SAAB, but the owner emerges on his bicycle as he presumable sets off on an errand.
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Old 09-28-04, 08:30 PM   #10
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Once I made a comparsion here- about, would you give up part of your food ration on a desert island, just because a person was obese. You less, they more because of their special needs.
Lets see how many would? I think this comparsion applies to power cars... I am reluctant to trash the likes of Hummers, but I will stick my neck out and say they are a disconnect with reality.
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Old 09-28-04, 10:41 PM   #11
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zealot-
i agree that those with special needs are vindicated in this case. many people have no choice but to commute to the bustling metropolis. but nobody wants to use public transport in america, and nobody wants to inconvenience themselves (or come into close contact with others) by carpooling.
the existence of the H2 ( http://www.fuh2.com/ ) does not bother me, per se. it is the wanton use of such a vehicle that bothers me. it is a statement of excess. that, in itself, is an ugly american disease.
personally, i could never own a smart car (european golf cart that gets millions of MPG, but where would you put your bike?), i believe in functionality. i just wish we could learn to collectively trim the fat.
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Old 09-28-04, 11:47 PM   #12
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Eurotrash..Last Wednesday I had to go up to LA for a work training day...Right downtown...I took the train. Metrolink. You could see the Interstate 5 in the distance..The train was moving at about 60 miles an hour...The interstate traffic was not..
I think American's are a creature of habit..If only those stuck freeway motorist could look into our train car and see us relaxed.
Did see a couple train passengers loading up their bikes on the commuter train. I assume for local transportation when they got off...Way to go.
I arrived at the headquarters in good spirits..later in the break room, I heard locals complain of overzealous cops, stalled traffic, road rage..
As to Hummers effect upon the supply and demand of gasoline..Someone is glutoneous with petro..It raises the price for the rest of us..Ever think of their effect upon consumption in that light.
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Old 09-29-04, 06:56 AM   #13
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zealot-
taking the train is worth a pat on the back! americans have such a stigma toward public transport. it is travel for the lower class. it is where people get mugged. you have to share seats and look at other people you don't know... americans have a great fear of that, you know! i am glad you got to relax, read the paper, eat breakfast, or catch up on sleep while the others were creeping white-knuckled on the freeway, already worn out before the day began! if only america had a clean, fast, efficient and affordable train system like europe. could you imagine, seven dollars and thirty minutes to go from say, commuter-haven santa rosa to downtown san francisco?
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Old 09-29-04, 07:41 AM   #14
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Its too late for many American cities. They have evolved into car-centric hell-holes that are too spread out for effective public rail transport.

Luckily many young people are getting very sick of the ex-burbs and are starting to revitalize the old inner city: baltimore, memphis, philadelphia. Perhaps their children will see the value of living in a city where you don't have to encase yourself into a 2 ton machine everytime you run a basic errand or go to work.

Sadly, although I live in the "inner city", I have a job in a beltway hell-hole (100 miles round trip everyday). Everyone I know at work hates commuting. People deal with it in different ways: some buy beamers and park them in 2 spaces at the far end of the lot, some become aggressive drivers, some come to work late and leave early, some fantasize about cycling too much and read cycling bboards in their cubes, some have elaborate commuting rituals, some are always stressed out and bored, few of us have time for even basic home-maintenance activities.

I think that in addition to health problems, suburban sprawl damages people's productivity by sucking their time away, dammit.
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Old 09-29-04, 07:45 AM   #15
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zealot-
taking the train is worth a pat on the back! americans have such a stigma toward public transport. it is travel for the lower class. it is where people get mugged. you have to share seats and look at other people you don't know... americans have a great fear of that, you know! i am glad you got to relax, read the paper, eat breakfast, or catch up on sleep while the others were creeping white-knuckled on the freeway, already worn out before the day began! if only america had a clean, fast, efficient and affordable train system like europe. could you imagine, seven dollars and thirty minutes to go from say, commuter-haven santa rosa to downtown san francisco?
America has a clean, fast, efficient and affordable train system. It's call the New York City MTA.

People don't realize how much money I'm saving each month buy using this massive public transportation system that extends over 100 miles in either direction. The cost of constructing such a system today would be in the hundreds of billions of dollars so don't expect your town to start building tomorrow. My transportation cost is a whopping $93.00 dollars and that's every month!

Yet, I know many people next door who own one or two cars when buses run down every avenue every 15 minutes. I really believe it's all about image. Most individuals would rather spend all their discretionary income on motor transport even if it's unnecessary. People just don't want to look poor.
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Old 09-30-04, 05:39 AM   #16
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Regions considered to have the worst suburban sprawl included Atlanta...
Uh oh! I live in the Atlanta area. I hope riding my bike to work every day will save me from the "chronic health problems" mentioned in the article.
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Old 09-30-04, 10:50 AM   #17
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I bet that stress related to driving in heavy traffic accounts for a good portion of the reduced life expectancy.
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Old 09-30-04, 10:59 AM   #18
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San Diego County has a superb bicycle-friendly commuter rail line (San Diego Northern Railroad's "Coaster," an acronym for "Coast Express Rail") for the many people who live along the north coast and work, learn, shop, or play in either of the two largest employment centers, Sorrento Valley and downtown San Diego.
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Old 09-30-04, 06:39 PM   #19
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A book you all might like to read is "The Party's Over - Oil, War, and the Fate of Industrial Societies" by Richard Heinberg. I'm reading it right now and it is a very well documented and pretty unbiased information source. For a book with so much information it also is a good read. Just throwing that out there.
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Old 10-01-04, 10:12 PM   #20
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[QUOTE=eurotrash666]zealot-
personally, i could never own a smart car (european golf cart that gets millions of MPG, but where would you put your bike?), QUOTE]

Eurotrash, what about a bike rack?

I find it ludicrous that people think they need tons of space because they might have to haul something around, and then they never do.
The parking lot at work is full of nice cars, and I know for a fact that I earn more AND save more than they do. I also have more energy, no need for a gym membership, a harder ass, and the money and fitness to take some expensive, kickass vacations to places they will never go because they "need" a big car. They have to drone on at work in order to make that big car payment.
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Old 10-01-04, 11:51 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dahon.Steve
There's a new study that just came out stating that living in the burbs where you are drive everywhere have health characteristics similar to someone four years older who lives in a more compact city. In other words, biking and walking made you healthy.
Although I agree that sprawl contributes to health problems in a big way, I would also say that, no matter where you live, you have a choice to live a healthy lifestyle.
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Old 10-02-04, 12:04 PM   #22
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Although I agree that sprawl contributes to health problems in a big way, I would also say that, no matter where you live, you have a choice to live a healthy lifestyle.
Yup, my commute yesterday was:
5:40 a.m. 10-minute bus ride plus 4-mile / 6.5 km jog
4:20 p.m. 4.5-mile / 7 km jog plus 5-minute train ride

My other favored commuting option comprises a 30-minute bike ride each way.

Over the past decade, I have driven a car to work less than 30 times. Before that, I was in a 5-member carpool, which entailed driving once per week.

There are plenty of ways to protect our health and conserve our resources while enjoying detached housing with elbow room, ample landscaping, and freedom from sound-carrying common walls.
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Old 10-02-04, 01:47 PM   #23
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Looks to me like some of you enjoy being self-righteous and self-congratulatory. Give yourselves a big pat on the back.
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Old 10-02-04, 03:27 PM   #24
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Although I agree that sprawl contributes to health problems in a big way, I would also say that, no matter where you live, you have a choice to live a healthy lifestyle.

I agree completely. You can only be responsible for yourself, why worry if others choose to exercise or not? You can't make them. I'm still trying to figure out how lower emission cars are going to suppress road rage LOL
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Old 10-02-04, 05:59 PM   #25
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Speaking of California, they just passed legislation that will force cars to stricter emissions. The Bush administration and the auto are going to take the issue to court in the hopes of getting a reversal.
Yes, which brings us to another study regarding the negative impact of our car culture. Too bad the federal government and auto industries favor profit over the health of children.


Smog Harms Children's Lungs for Life, Study Finds
Thu Sep 9, 7:55 AM ET
http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmp...lifestudyfinds
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