New guidelines for road design in Ottawa

posted Nov 5, 2012, 5:01 PM by RCC Admin.   [ updated Nov 5, 2012, 5:02 PM ]

 Urban planners in Ottawa's bureaucracy have now adopted this configuration as their preferred intersection design in their crusade to promote cycling and reduce accidents.
This design coming to Ottawa?

Colin Simpson, project manager for the Laurier Avenue segregated bike lane, has indicated that when you build in hazards at intersections drivers compensate by becoming more aware of their surroundings. It's based on the principle that the riskier it appears the less the chance of accident.  His theory is that with cars, bikes, emergency vehicles, disabled folks in wheel chairs, joggers, skateboarders, dog walkers, pedestrians, and possibly helicopters coming in all directions drivers will eventually slow down to the point where you'd rather get hit by a car than an out-of-control cyclist trying to beat the red light. Simpson got his idea on visits to Peking, Ho Chi Minh City, and Ouagadougou where he watched in awe as his traffic chaos theory was put to practice. 

In addition to implementing his unique design at every intersection in Ottawa, he plans to take on greater challenges. Before year's end, he will be meeting with auto executives to discuss the viability of removing brakes from cars and installing upturned carving knives on their steering wheels.  

Hmmmm ... maybe he's on to something.