Recent Blog Entries: Debra Efroymson
What happens when we take a tiny bit of road space away from cars and motorbikes, and turn it over to people? An explosion of fun and joy; expansion of social networks; and a realization that this would be a really great thing to do throughout the city and throughout the year!
We could say that it is impossible to make significant changes to reduce climate change, and thus to accept devastating results. Or we could be brave and work towards a solution that would not only dramatically reduce carbon emissions, but make our cities, and thus our lives, better in ever so many ways.
We can try to solve one global problem at a time. If so, we should not be surprised that we are not getting very far. It would be far more sensible to look for connections and engage in actions that would address a number of important issues, including economics, health, environment, and social wellbeing.
We can explain away every single car crash...but perhaps it's time that we noticed that it is cars themselves that are deadly.
Ghost bicycles remind us of the dangers of cycling and the need for safer road conditions...but what if we also had daily reminders of the total death toll from motorized vehicles?
Traveling from one place to another, if it is not particularly far, makes most sense on foot. Walking can be fun; it requires no parking space; it’s exercise; it allows for a full appreciation of the surrounding scenes; it costs nothing. Beyond all that, it just makes sense.
Remember when those lucky enough to live in a country with potable water drank it straight from the tap? It seemed the most natural thing in the world to hold a glass under the tap, fill it, and drink. I remember the pleasure on returning to the States from my Peace Corps stint in Guatemala and being able to do so.
“It’s not my fault.” “He wasn’t paying attention.” “She suddenly jumped in front of my car.”
Recently, ironically enough on the way home from doing a recording for a documentary on carfree cities, our car bumped into a pedestrian. My driver and the other passengers immediately launched into a chorus similar to the above phrases: he should…
What role do street vendors play in cities? Does it make sense to ban them or should we work to preserve them?
Helping people make healthy food choices requires access to sellers of fruits and vegetables...preferably without the temptation of buying ultra-processed food. Markets do just that and are great for local economies, but can pose a threat to big business, and thus can be subject to bans. But we can fight back.