New Report by T4A: Dangerous by Design


Transportation for America (a coalition of which RenewLV is a partner), jointly with the Surface Transportation Policy Partnership, released the results of a pedestrian safety study earlier this week. The report, Dangerous by Design, ranks metropolitan regions by the ratio between the average pedestrian fatality rate and the percentage of pedestrian commuters. While the Lehigh Valley was not ranked in the official report, because the metropolitan area (Allentown-Bethlehem-Easton, excluding our immediate neighbors in New Jersey) does not exceed 1 million residents, the Greater Philadelphia region is listed in the report. This part of the state (which includes Wilmington, DE and Camden, NJ) ranked 38 out of 52 , with a Pedestrian Danger Index (PDI) of 44.3.

One of the most notable aspects of this report is the connection made to public health. T4A reports:

While it is still unnecessarily dangerous for pedestrians to walk, health experts are making the case that it can be just as deadly not to walk. Even as these preventable deaths mount, there has been a growing recognition that walking and bicycling – what many now refer to as “active transportation” – are critical to increasing levels of healthy exercise and reducing obesity and heart disease.

The report calls on Congress to adopt better federal policy toward safer streets and more walkable neighborhoods. For this reason, I urge you to contact your Congressional representatives’ offices to make them aware of the report.

About Beata Bujalska

Beata Bujalska is the former Campaign Coordinator for Renew Lehigh Valley. She currently lives in Panama, a place that fascinates her due to (among other reasons) its recent development boom.

Posted on November 11, 2009, in Health, Media Coverage, Neighborhoods, Public Infrastructure, Transportation and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Stephen Lee Davis

    Hey Beata, Allentown does actually get ranked in Appendix C, which ranks all 360 US metropolitan areas in the county, broken down by state. Check out the full PA stats here:

    http://t4america.org/resources/dangerousbydesign/metroranking/#pennsylvania

  2. Thanks, Stephen. I should have been more precise in my post – I merely focused on the top 52 metropolitan areas that are the “first-feature” of the report. Also, it’s good to see that the study accounted for the percentage of pedestrian commuters. Sadly, given the road designs in much of the Lehigh Valley, many residents don’t even risk walking. I propose a second study – Lack of Access by Design.

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