Streets Brought to Life by Daily Exercise During Lockdown
Our streets are seeing unprecedented life, as the drop in car traffic has led to a greater confidence among people to use active travel modes, including families teaching children to ride on the roads.
The current conditions follow legislation issued by the government to curb all unnecessary trips, while promoting daily exercise through the types of activity that can enhance people’s immune systems, such as walking, running and cycling.
With fewer cars on the road, I am seeing way more families and leisure cyclists on the road. I recorded this within a few minutes. Never seen anything like this where I live. The people will cycle, if they believe and know the roads & infrastructure are safer. pic.twitter.com/olFBvL26IR
— James Stafford (@Jamesdestafford) April 12, 2020
It’s going to suck so much when we have to tell him we can’t do this everyday anymore. 🙁 pic.twitter.com/YlOEVNIrsV
— Bex 🚴🏼♀️🚵🏽♀️🚲🚀🏴☠️ (@FiresideFortune) April 12, 2020
People are even getting creative with their choice of daily exercise:
Space without cars is space for people – let’s have it like this all the time @StockportMBC so I and others can engage in my new sport of #longboardathloning #shutthestreets #peopleovercars #rad #cheadlehulme #Stockport pic.twitter.com/v72Iu3xfEy
— Robbie George (@CODEMCR) April 14, 2020
The question now is whether we can find ways to prevent our streets from falling back into the previous status quo of air and noise pollution, congestion, bullying and intimidation.
We can do this by seizing the opportunity to implement temporary measures that prevent rat running and enable active travel, similarly to the great initiatives happening across the world. You can write to your local councillor to voice your support for lost-cost, quick-win schemes using cones or planters that allow access to people, while stopping drivers from rat running.
Good list of practical measures for safer walking during lockdown. Hear @AndyBurnhamGM & @Chris_Boardman v keen but not getting traction with 10 councils (who have power – v busy tbf). Maybe residents should just apply on own key streets? Where I live (Chorlton) that would be … https://t.co/Mt9MkeW3ET
— Claire Stocks (@stocksyatlarge) April 16, 2020
If you’d like to get involved with your Walk Ride local group, then contact firstname.lastname@example.org and follow us via social media.