Here at RTH, we're often accused of demonizing motorists. The irony is that many of us are motorists - so why would we demonize ourselves?
Here's a 'pro-motorist' idea that's doing the rounds, and it's surely worth a look:
Uxbridge wants to put the brakes on stop signs.
They're bad for the environment and they don't work, say proponents of the idea to reduce stop signs in the town of 11,000 an hour northeast of Toronto.
I've often felt that stop signs were a rude and kludgy way to reduce speed. Remember all that street furniture they implemented in Europe? And the 'thin streets' they use in Portland? Safer-by-design is a better way to go.
My own experience of stop signs is unnerving. I tell my kids to make eye contact with the driver before they cross - to be sure the driver is not rolling through. But it's very hard to see through a windshield, and confusion is common.
As for driving, well, as the article points out, many stop signs are unnecessary. For myself, I slow down, look both ways, and roll on through.
One of the Uxbridge residents interviewed proposes more enforcement:
"Eliminating stop signs isn't going to do any good. They need a cop sitting there," says [Bud] Doucette, a 60-year, accident-free driver who had a close call in his electric wheelchair when a motorist failed to stop.
Enforcing stupid rules doesn't make them any less stupid, and it won't modify people's behaviour. You have to fix the problem not compound it.
There's an environmental aspect too. Less stopping and starting means less pollution (yet another reason to get Hamilton's trucks off residential streets).
We'll keep you posted on this one.
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