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Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Prince George's: Worst in pedestrian safety

(Posted 25 Dec 2007)
Making the streets safe for pedestrians.
Sun, 25 Dec 2007 (Ulman).
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In Prince George's, there is less willingness to work on state roads, where Susan Hubbard of the county's Department of Public Works and Transportation said most fatalities happened in 2006.

"We only do county-maintained roads," Hubbard said. "The state is responsible for all things pedestrian as well as driver safety on state roads."

Hubbard said she was surprised to hear that a forthcoming report from the Coalition for Smarter Growth, which tracks development and transportation, will rate Prince George's the worst-performing district on pedestrian safety in the Metropolitan Washington region.

But Cheryl Cort, the coalition's policy director, said "Prince George's actually has a terrible problem with pedestrian safety, and we're seeing very little to stop it."

"The state shares a lot of the blame in the dangers that pedestrians face because they're getting killed on state roads," Cort said. There are best practices that all jurisdictions should be employing, including hiring bicycle and pedestrian planners. Prince George's isn't instituting these enough, she said.
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Despite Hubbard's misleading claim "We only do county-maintained roads," Prince George's
County police frequently have a speed trap set up on Maryland state highway 5 outbound (but not inbound) in an area with no pedestrians and a speed limit that is suspiciously much slower outbound (35) than inbound (50). Why can't they move their enforcement resources to areas where pedestrians are in danger?

So. why doesn't Jack Johnson's "Livable Communities" initiative include keeping pedestrians alive?

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