Comment 84085

By jason (registered) | Posted December 18, 2012 at 10:23:46

A quick background story that readers might find interesting:

A couple of months ago I told Ryan that I was going to gather this data. Like most of us, I had no clue what to expect, although casual observations during 35 years in this city led me to believe that we had far too many over-built roads in the urban lower city. I told him I would publish it regardless of what it showed. I recall making the statement: "these numbers are either going to help our cause, or crush it. Part of me doesn't even want to see the data!".

But unlike some folks in this city, I don't believe in making decisions without proper info. And let's be real - any complete streets movement would end up resulting in these numbers being dug up by public works. It's just that we're stuck in an old-style city where this research will never be done by the city. In NYC, Richmond VA, Vancouver, Portland etc.... their public works and traffic department are actively searching out good locations to calm traffic and add complete streets. The public doesn't need to do this research on their own time because they have city departments who care about the vitality and economic success of their city.

After plowing through the numbers (which almost required a university degree. Lol) I excitedly shared with Ryan that the data was even better than I could have imagined.
Now we now why it's never been made public.

I don't expect all members of staff or council to care what the data shows, but I do honestly believe that most of them care about facts and evidence when making decisions. This makes it very simple for councillors to ease the 'concerns' of outlying citizens about lane reductions, two-conversions, bike-lanes and complete streets finally coming to Hamilton.

EDIT: I know I mentioned this in the article, but it really was a pleasure to work with the city department that had this info. They were more than helpful.

Comment edited by jason on 2012-12-18 10:24:29

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