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Friday, January 15, 2016

Double Bind Snow Blind

Posted on Fri, Jan 15, 2016 at 4:00 AM

It's that time of year again; the time of year when pedestrians encroach by necessity into spaces motorists deem to be theirs alone. Uncleared sidewalks, inaccessible curb cuts, out of reach walk buttons all contribute to pedestrians getting in your way even more than usual. So I would like to ask the drivers of Halifax for advice on one particular issue. Imagine, if you will, a busy street with a sidewalk on only one side. Now imagine a pedestrian whose destination is on the side of the street without a sidewalk, in the middle of the block and some distance from a legal crosswalk. While the young and nimble may be able to prance like Legolas atop the ice and snow, the rest of us have two options: cross at the nearest crosswalk and walk in the roadway until our destination becomes accessible, or remain on the sidewalk until we are directly across from our destination and then jaywalk. In low traffic areas, jaywalking is clearly the safer option. Main Avenue, however, is one of the main traffic arteries in Fairview and has a sidewalk on only one side for its entire length. On the Bedford Highway, where the flow of traffic is literally continuous, there are only a few short segments with sidewalks on both sides of the street, and there is not a single crosswalk between Kearny Lake Rd and Larry Uteck. These are just two examples of areas in the city where there is simply no safe way for a person to walk from A to B. So I look to our mighty vehicular overlords for guidance; what must we unhappy pedestrians do to avoid incurring your wrath? Besides just stay the hell home, I mean. —Roadkill

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