Pellerin: Driving, pedalling, walking – the city wants us all to get along on the roads

By Brigitte Pellerin, Ottawa Citizen, December 19, 2018

According to the city, 64 per cent of Ottawa residents say that “access to safe streets and  other public spaces is the most significant infrastructure barrier to walking that they face.” As part of the “Building a Liveable Ottawa” policy review, the city came up with a Pedestrian Plan in 2013 that aims to turn Ottawa into a “world-class pedestrian city where an equally vibrant and functional pedestrian realm encourages people to walk all year-round.”

Various measures help protect vulnerable road users, and Ottawa is experimenting with several of them. When everyone respects the rules, most shared or dedicated bike lanes work reasonably well. For pedestrians, I think raised crosswalks are a must, especially at busy intersections. They force cars to slow down and give you a better sense of security when you’re on foot. To my mind, the best innovation in recent years are those crosswalks painted to look three-dimensional that have started to pop up in some cities, including Montreal earlier this year.

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