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Requirements for sidewalks/footpaths

JNL

Cyburbian
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2,449
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25
Inspired by another thread where "sidewalks" were described as "evil things that bring "those people"", I am curious to know about the provision of footpaths/sidewalks in other places- when must you provide a sidewalk? Is this prescribed by the designation of a road in a roading hierarchy? Do you have any pictures of sidewalks that end abruptly, leaving nowhere for pedestrians to go?

I am just checking up on our requirements here, but I think it is mandatory to provide a continuous sidewalk on at least one side of every road. Exceptions would include state highways that exclusively carry motor vehicle traffic. The majority of our residential streets have sidewalks on both sides except where topography (?) makes this difficult.
 

Cardinal

Cyburbian
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10,081
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34
What do we require or what do we do? We require sidewalks for new construction, new subdivisions, and with street reconstruction. We make exceptions. Then again, sometimes we don't.

If there are no sidewalks abutting, we will sometimes extend them across adjacent properties, and other times waive them, but with the developer/property owner agreeing to install them when required by the city in the future. We do not have them in our (city-developed) business park, although we are beginning to recognize a need to provide pedestrian accomodation in some form. This will likely be a combination of paths and sidewalks. The city argued, during reconstruction of a collector road to the University, that it did not need sidewalks on side of the street with a city park. The Plan Board and Common Council thought otherwise. (Yeah!) The worst problem is trying to get them into the 1970's-1980's subdivisions where they were not required at the time. Home owners fight them because they do not want to shovel snow.
 

donk

Cyburbian
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6,970
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we don't require sidewalks in any developments. the city can hardly keep up the maintenance of the existing sidewalks.

it is pretty scary downtown, the majority has no sidewalks, just asphalt from building to building with some lines painted to let you know where you are supposed to walk.

The few areas with sidewalks are along provincial highways and a few other areas that some other level of gov't paid for themk.

I'll try to get some pictures to share.
 

Repo Man

Cyburbian
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2,550
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We are pretty much built out, so any sidewalk installation has been a retrofit. We have some more traditional neighborhoods with sidewalks, but most of the subdivisions do not want sidewalks at all. Residents have been pretty open to installation of sidewalks along some of the main thoroughfares, connecting the neighborhoods with each other and providing a link to shopping and parks. The bis issue is of course money, so we usually have to wait for a major street reconstruction to get them installed.
 

JNL

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2,449
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25
Well I was wrong, found out from one of our traffic engineers that sidewalks are not mandatory here at all! Well not through national guidelines or anything, apparently it depends on the road hierarchy in the Local Authority District Plan. But these generally make allowances for footpaths, rather than require them.

They are so common here I just presumed it was because developers had to provide them. I think there would be an uproar if a new residential subdivision was built without any sidewalks. I will try to take some photos too.

I am interested in this because I'm reviewing literature on international practice in pedestrian network planning and facilities design, so am keen to hear more about practice in your area!
 

JNL

Cyburbian
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2,449
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25
donk said:
it is pretty scary downtown, the majority has no sidewalks, just asphalt from building to building with some lines painted to let you know where you are supposed to walk.
Wow, that is amazing! I find it hard even to imagine that. So do most office buildings have their own carparks, and you drive everywhere?
 

green lizard

Member
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133
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6
Connections

The sidewalk-to-nowhere syndrome is common here.
There are a couple of reasons, many have to do with
who will pay for the sidewalk;

1) the road is owned by the state. It built the sidewalk and
ended it at the county road right-of-way.

2) any combination of the above. State-county, county-city,
city-state.

3) The roadway that the sidewalk ends at is due to be
reconstructed in mabye the next ten years. Therefore
it is deemed ecenomical to wait for the new construction
to build the sidewalk.

In my experience most sidewalk choices are made on ADA
(Americans with Disabilities Act) rules and regs.
 

JNL

Cyburbian
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2,449
Points
25
Repo Man said:
any sidewalk installation has been a retrofit.
When there is a new residential subdivision here, utilities are installed, then roads with footpaths are constructed, and the houses come last. It can look kinda funny in the early stages, all these paths going nowhere and no-one to walk on them! But it shows prospective home-owners that walking has been catered for.
 

donk

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30
Wow, that is amazing! I find it hard even to imagine that
It sounds a lot worse then it is.

the street in the downtown, on my side of the city is only about 12-24 metres wide, building face to building face. traffic flow is only oneway and there is parking on both sides of teh street. It is simialr in the neighbourhood where I live, no sidewalks, about 15 metres building face to building face, on street parking on one side (during the summer only).

As for parking, the City has provided a few lots and one property owner has, the majority is on street. This area is not really big.

When it stops raining I'll go snap a digital image or two.
 

IPlan

Cyburbian
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60
Points
4
New subdivisions require sidewalks on both sides of the street, unless it is a cul-de sac, then only one side. Standard width 1.5 metre concrete.
 

donk

Cyburbian
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6,970
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30
Here are some images of one of the downtowns in my city.

These are all taken in the "downtown" / CBD



173nosidewalk1-med.jpg



where there are sidewalks this is what thye look like



{edit - removed teh ?### so the images load here]
 
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JNL

Cyburbian
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2,449
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25
donk said:
Here are some images of one of the downtowns in my city.

These are all taken in the "downtown" / CBD
Interesting. So where there are no sidewalks, vehicle speeds would be reasonably low, and drivers keep an eye out for pedestrians?
 

Cardinal

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10,081
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Interesting pictures. With the narrow streets and parking on both sides, it does not look as bad as I had pictured it. I suppose there is something of an aesthetic issue, but on the other hand, it is barrier-free and would be much easier to keep free of snow. (For southerners in the crowd, the curb and gutter is where snow or slush collects. The sidewalk and the road may be clear, but getting from one to the other can be a wet and cold obstacle.)
 

donk

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30
So where there are no sidewalks, vehicle speeds would be reasonably low, and drivers keep an eye out for pedestrians?
When you drive on this street, your speed is about 10 miles per hour, you are always looking for car doors to open and people to cross the street anywhere. This is traffic calming to the max.

If you want to see what a busy street with no sidewalks looks like here is a picture from a block away. This street is scary to walk on.



173nosidewalk_busy_street-med.jpg
 

jmf

Cyburbian
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594
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17
JNL said:
Interesting. So where there are no sidewalks, vehicle speeds would be reasonably low, and drivers keep an eye out for pedestrians?
Good thing I wans't drinking coffee or my desk would be a mess....around here if there are no sidewalks the pedestrians keep an eye for drivers....walk at your own risk! (It might be good for you!)
 

donk

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30
People do walk on it, not many accidents. I think it must be something in the gene pool or water that makes you know how streets like this function around here and impacts the way people drive and walk.

People here drive in a way that I can't explain, everyone drives way too defensively. If you come to a four way stop you could wait half an hour before someone takes the initiative and drives through the intersection.
 
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