To make progress on our roads

To make progress on our roads

The Boston Herald article “Shattuck: Marty Walsh, IndyCar dare us to think fast” (5/22/2015) had one excellent quote, challenging Boston “To make progress on our roads, like they do in other first-world nations.”

Here are three examples of progress on roads in other first-world nations.


“With only three of every 100,000 Swedes dying on the roads each year, compared with 5.5 per 100,000 across the European Union, 11.4 in America and 40 in the Dominican Republic, which has the world’s deadliest traffic, Sweden’s roads have become the world’s safest.” … “Planning has played the biggest part in reducing accidents. Roads in Sweden are built with safety prioritised over speed or convenience. Low urban speed-limits, pedestrian zones and barriers that separate cars from bikes and oncoming traffic have helped. ”

Netherlands: (Northeastern University does summer study abroad in the Netherlands, led by Professor Peter Furth.)

“While the Netherlands is as affluent a country as the US, the Dutch drive cars half as much as Americans, ride trains 10 times as much, and ride bikes 40 times as much. They also have the world’s best traffic safety record, with a traffic fatality rate 67% lower than ours. Dutch bicycling infrastructure makes it safe for everyone – children and elderly as well – to ride bikes anywhere, and is a major reason that more than 25% of trip nationwide, and more than 40% in cities like Delft and Amsterdam, are made by bike. The goal of this program is learn Dutch principles for planning cities and for designing bikeways, roads, and transit networks that make ABC (all-but-car) transportation so attractive, and that make cities livable and safe.”


“‘This is an urban, almost philosophical project, which consists of seeing the city in another way than through the use of cars,’ she said, citing as examples the French cities of Lyon and Bordeaux, whose riverbanks have been successfully reclaimed for pedestrians.”

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