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  1. #1
    Enjoy
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    Car Free Street Experiment

    Guess they're going to try to make several Seattle streets car-free for a day.

    URL http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/htm...rfree31m0.html
    MAP http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/ABP...2008083031.pdf

  2. #2
    My tank takes chocolate. FlowerBlossom's Avatar
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    I wish I could be enthusiastic about this. But, this sure reads to me as green-washing.

    Why aren't they doing this, say, in the Pike's Place Market area? Wouldn't THAT be something to get excited about.
    Feminism is the profound notion that women are human beings.

  3. #3
    tired donnamb's Avatar
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    I went to the one in Portland. It was really, really fun.
    "Real wars of words are harder to win. They require thought, insight, precision, articulation, knowledge, and experience. They require the humility to admit when you are wrong. They recognize that the dialectic is not about making us look at you, but about us all looking together for the truth."

  4. #4
    Gears? CliftonGK1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FlowerBlossom View Post
    I wish I could be enthusiastic about this. But, this sure reads to me as green-washing.

    Why aren't they doing this, say, in the Pike's Place Market area? Wouldn't THAT be something to get excited about.
    This wouldn't work with PPM. The daily vendors wouldn't have close access to set up their tables (those are fully torn down nightly), and the permanent vendors wouldn't have close access to bring in fresh produce (delivered by vehicle directly to the back of each booth on the arcade.)
    As a tourism destination, the loss of parking at/around the market would cause a huge decrease in the volume of people. Tour vans use the market cut-through as a pick-up/drop-off point for large groups. While I think it would be nice to walk/bike through the market without worrying about being backed into by a delivery truck, from an economic standpoint I doubt the vendors would support it.

  5. #5
    My tank takes chocolate. FlowerBlossom's Avatar
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    Donna, it would be very, very fun. But, the locations proposed for Seattle are somewhat obscure, or "safe" areas that might not attract a lot of attention. They would be too far away for me to bother checking out, anyways. Thus, the people in those neighborhoods will benefit. Which, is super great, but, at the moment I don't understand how it's good for Seattle as a whole. Perhaps, these are simply 'test areas', and they connect the test areas to more test areas, and over time they create a continuous car-free zone throughout Seattle. If I understand correctly, Bogota Columbia set it up this way, a major artery is closed down entirely. (I might be wrong, I need to do some fact-checking).

    But, in reality, I see these as more like farmer's markets, where small pockets will be car-free. But, I'm not going to drive to West Seattle (Alki) to bike for a few car-free blocks.

    I think that if the city of Seattle was clever enough, they could set the car-free area to be a specific period of time on Sunday, not all day, as a compromise. Thus, in the case of Pikes Place Market, let's say 9am to 5pm. Before and after, vendors would be able to set up, park the cars, and tear down the same as always. If you run the buses so that they are 2-3 blocks from Pikes Place Market (for example), then, people minimize the amount they have to walk.

    Of course, then, there would be people who would complain that it's not a true car-free day because it's not all day.

    [edit:] After looking at the map again, the Alki route would be fun; it's got some fabulous views. It's going to be more crowded than it already is.
    Last edited by FlowerBlossom; 08-01-08 at 10:30 AM.
    Feminism is the profound notion that women are human beings.

  6. #6
    tired donnamb's Avatar
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    Ours wasn't all day. That was the bad part. No one wanted it to end.
    "Real wars of words are harder to win. They require thought, insight, precision, articulation, knowledge, and experience. They require the humility to admit when you are wrong. They recognize that the dialectic is not about making us look at you, but about us all looking together for the truth."

  7. #7
    Senior Member BengeBoy's Avatar
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    Interesting.

    The closure on Alki makes an already nice ride that much more relaxing. It's a flat ride, you can get there easily from downtown Seattle or from the Eastside (via the I90 bike tunnel), or you could combine it with a ride along the Duwamish River.

    The Rainier Avenue closure is interesting to me as well. One of my regular rides is around the southern end of Lake Washington....this gives me an excuse to take a detour, ride over to Rainier and cruise through Columbia City, and then scoot back over to the Lake to finish the ride. Likewise, people who live up in Seattle could come south along the lake front and then come over to Columbia City.

    Bikeworks, our very interesting local bike co-op, is located just off Rainier Avenue so we should all drop into Bikeworks and pick up some chain lube or something to support a very worthy bike-related organization.

  8. #8
    Center of the Universe ngateguy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CliftonGK1 View Post
    This wouldn't work with PPM. The daily vendors wouldn't have close access to set up their tables (those are fully torn down nightly), and the permanent vendors wouldn't have close access to bring in fresh produce (delivered by vehicle directly to the back of each booth on the arcade.)
    As a tourism destination, the loss of parking at/around the market would cause a huge decrease in the volume of people. Tour vans use the market cut-through as a pick-up/drop-off point for large groups. While I think it would be nice to walk/bike through the market without worrying about being backed into by a delivery truck, from an economic standpoint I doubt the vendors would support it.
    They could and would allow local access by the vendors. the street closures being discussed allow for local access by the residents and vendors.
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  9. #9
    Senior Member hurricane harry's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CliftonGK1 View Post
    This wouldn't work with PPM. The daily vendors wouldn't have close access to set up their tables (those are fully torn down nightly), and the permanent vendors wouldn't have close access to bring in fresh produce (delivered by vehicle directly to the back of each booth on the arcade.)
    As a tourism destination, the loss of parking at/around the market would cause a huge decrease in the volume of people. Tour vans use the market cut-through as a pick-up/drop-off point for large groups. While I think it would be nice to walk/bike through the market without worrying about being backed into by a delivery truck, from an economic standpoint I doubt the vendors would support it.
    Actually, many vendors keep their tables in storage lockers in the basements of the market buildings. Closing pike place to vehicles might be a good thing. If you have ever driven through on a busy day, you know it takes forever because of all the peds walking on the road. All of that unused road space could be used for more vendors. Buses could use western ave.

  10. #10
    Gears? CliftonGK1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hurricane harry View Post
    Actually, many vendors keep their tables in storage lockers in the basements of the market buildings.
    (In my best Johnny Carson impersonation) I did not know that.

    I've always seen day vendors setting up tables and items out of vans/trucks. I was unaware of any on-site storage space at the market.

  11. #11
    My tank takes chocolate. FlowerBlossom's Avatar
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    I didn't know that either. I too have seen too many a van outside the market, assumed everyone had to bring in their stuff for the day and pack back up, like at the other farmers markets around town.
    Feminism is the profound notion that women are human beings.

  12. #12
    Senior Member randya's Avatar
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  13. #13
    My tank takes chocolate. FlowerBlossom's Avatar
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    Thanks for posting that Randya.

    I think small first and expand bigger, later might be the best thing afterall.
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  14. #14
    Enjoy
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    On streets where bikes hold up traffic, setting aside a separate street might be big win for everyone. When I first saw the article, I envisioned that they'd close a key Seattle street during rush hour to see if more bike/peds would use it as a safer route. The routes they posted didn't seem like heavy bike commute areas.

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