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Transportation without a car is not easy | Letter
In the spirit of an old adage “walk a mile in her shoes,” I’d like to propose such a challenge to the powers involved in shaping our transportation choices. It’s a simple challenge: Spend 30-days navigating your daily life without your car – just 30 days.
Find your way getting to and from work, the grocery store, doctors and getting your kids to and from their school and extra-curricular activities. Try to find your way to and from your social events - be it a holiday party, book signing or charity dinner.
Be creative but spend 30 days experiencing the "alternative" transportation options in place today. Then consider your experience when you influence something as simple as smothering competitive alternatives to taxis, minimizing bus routes or eliminating 24-hour parking.
Also, take it into consideration when influencing the acceptable width of a sidewalk, street lighting and where exactly you and your 5 year old would cross the street. Consider the weather, the minutes of winter daylight we enjoy in the great Northwest, as well as the safety of your journey.
Try living like the people who have to rely on the transportation alternatives, and those who would opt to leave their car at home were the choices manageable.
Consider that a work commute of four hours isn’t manageable for most and neither is walking solo two miles in the dark to the bus stop or relying on a cab that may or may not show up in time for you to get to the airport. Consider if it is economically feasible for you to enjoy a parents' night out 12 miles away with a $40 taxi ride or be able to reach a zip-like car in your neighborhood for less than $73 a day.
The problems are not all easy to solve, but the consequences of decisions are easily identifiable and with some perspective influencing there are indeed manageable solutions. May you rise to the challenge. I wish you luck.
Michelle MacKenzie, Kirkland