Current Affairs: The Silent Epidemic of Pedestrian Deaths in America
CurrentAffairs.org has a thought provoking interview with urban planner Angie Schmitt. Schmitt, who recently authored the book, Right of Way: Race, Class, and the Silent Epidemic of Pedestrian Deaths in America, makes several good points about the unacknowledged causes and consequences of the U.S. pedestrian safety crisis.
Portland, Oregon, where Charley Gee P.C. is located, gets a (really scathing) shout out in the interview:
It’s really stark in Portland, actually. I use Portland as a bad example. Obviously, they’ve done a lot of good things, and they have a much lower fatality rate than many places. And this is true of almost every metro area: you have these socioeconomic dividing lines in cities. In Portland it’s this road called East 82nd Street. So everything east of 82nd Street in Portland is called East Portland, and that’s the part of the city that’s more diverse and poor than the rest of the city. Half of traffic deaths in Portland occur in East Portland, even though only a quarter of the population lives there. So people who live there are about twice as likely to be killed. Out of the 30 highest crash intersections in Portland, 28 out of 30 are in East Portland. There’s infrastructure inequality that occurs where white wealthy neighborhoods are having an easier time securing safe roadways and lower income neighborhoods of color are being passed over for the kind of stuff they need.
Read the full interview transcript here.
Listen to the podcast here.