Tristate named least dangerous for pedestrians

Saturday, August 8, 1998

BY JOHN HOPKINS
The Cincinnati Enquirer

pedestrians
Cincinnatians walk on the safe side.
(Glenn Hartong photo)
| ZOOM |
Sometimes it's better to be last.

In a ranking of the most dangerous metropolitan areas for pedestrians, the Tristate ranks at the very bottom, according to a new study by the Surface Transportation Policy Project in Washington, D.C.

The study does not necessarily mean the Tristate is a walker's paradise -- only that its pedestrians get hit less than those in other metropolitan areas, said Barbara McCann, the study's author.

"In our survey, no city got a passing grade," she said. "Cincinnati just ranked at the bottom of the 39 largest metropolitan areas."

HOW U.S. AREAS RANK
Safest for walking

1. Cincinnati-Hamilton, Ohio-Ky.-Ind.
2. Cleveland-Akron-Lorain.
3. Rochester, N.Y.
4. Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minn.-Wis.
5. (tie) Columbus, Ohio.
5. (tie) Kansas City, Mo.-Kan.
7. Milwaukee-Racine, Wis.
8. Pittsburgh-Beaver Valley, Pa.
9. New York-Northern New Jersey-Long Island, N.Y.-N.J.
10. Boston-Lawrence-Salem, Mass.-N.H.

Most dangerous

1. Orlando, Fla.
2. Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, Fla.
3. Miami-Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
4. Providence, R.I.-Pawtucket, R.I.-Fall River, Mass.
5. Phoenix.
6. Houston-Galveston-Brazoria, Texas.
7. Atlanta.
8. Los Angeles-Anaheim-Riverside, Calif.
9. Buffalo-Niagara Falls, N.Y.
10. Charlotte-Gastonia-Rock Hill, N.C.-S.C.
Read the full study at www.transact.org
The rankings reflect a "pedestrian danger index," calculated from factors such as pedestrian fatalities and injuries, total population, census data on how many commuters walk to work, and the percentage of pedestrian injuries among all traffic-related injuries. On a scale of 100, Orlando led the list with an index of 95; Cincinnati was lowest with 16. Cleveland was second-lowest with 17.

Ms. McCann said most of the findings reflect that the most dangerous cities were those with sprawling development and urban design aimed at moving cars and trucks rather than providing access for people, Ms. McCann said.

The danger spots are typically in the South and West; new cities with transportation plans that "focused on cars and did not pay attention to the people who walk," said Ms. McCann.

Cincinnati and Cleveland are older areas that have typically included pedestrians in their transportation plans, said Lou Ethridge, spokesman for the Ohio-Kentucky-Indiana Regional Council of Governments.

The fast-growing newer cities of the South and West, many times, do not have development policies inclusive of pedestrians, he said.

"Any area that has recognized the need for pedestrian facilities. . that's where you'll see the safety," Mr. Ethridge said.



Local Headlines For Saturday, August 8, 1998

'78 explosion "a lot worse'
Architect's dream, neighborhood's novelty
Ass't fire chief dismissed
Boehner speculates on 2000
Butler gets mental health levy
Check out meteor shower
Chemical spill closes facility
City might have to pay Flynt to move
Council may ask for raise
Dairies joust for school contract
Dems attack Taft's ad
Fair animals need hours of primping
Groups seek to mark canal site
I-71 ramp down to one lane
Land interests Kings Schools
Lindners won't face action on donations
Man in crash with police car
Mental health levy may be increased
Mill Creek studies OK'd
Murder suspect claims drug-induced "haze'
Murderer gets 18 to life
Neighbor's actions help police
Police chief defends work habits
Powerball winners claim prize
Propane blast hurts 6
Propane generally safe
Road widening work winds up
Rogers to run for mayor
Schools get report cards
Smog, heat alerts on
Some on council woo Shirey
Special-needs children at center of dispute
Springdale man charged in sex crimes
Stadium vote lands before elections board
Sycamore residents oppose development
Three cheers for WNBA
Towns eye sewer plant
Tristate named least dangerous for pedestrians