5pm madness

Just like werewolves get wild at full moon, and gremlins get really angry if they are fed after midnight, inner cities are a madness jungle at 5pm in the US.
Drivers block the intersections, stop at crosswalks, invade bike ways, and honk the horn for no reason.
Adrenaline pumps up, anxiety jumps, futile attempts to advance are tested, and resignation skyrockets because you are stuck in a traffic jam.
And in places like Manhattan this is the norm.
A couple days ago a fellow biker asked me “Do people just get crazy when they’re driving?”.
This is the result of 50 years of wrong transit policies by misguided politicians. And there are simple solutions that could solve it in a matter of months, here are some I’ve seen working in other countries:

  • Build free, big parking lots outside of downtown and have fast public transportation take you there.
  • Pedestrianize popular streets which, by the way, will have a positive impact on those retailers sales.
  • Every month, the police department should start a new awareness campaign. The sheriff appears in mass media warning drivers they are going to enforce something, lets say, blocking intersections. After a week, every single car that blocks an intersection gets a ticket no matter what. And after a month, we move to another campaign. In half a year transit safety improves exponentially without installing any additional infrastructure.


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