[tabi] Re: my object to Nova 2010



As a cyclist who spends many, many hours out on the road; I must express my belief that having more bus riders crossing the intersections is not going to encourage the drivers to drive with more caution. My husband, Rick, who captains our tandem, has been a cyclist for over 25 years. I cannot begin to tell you how many times, thanks to his ability to see and anticipate the unexpected out of these drivers, that we have barely escaped being plowed down by an inatentive driver. A little over 2 years ago, a close friend of ours was hit and then drug several feet by a car full of teenagers . Thank goodness, he did finally recover from that terrible accident. Because of the fact that Rick and I spend so much of our time out there on our bike, we are being constantly reminded of the dangers on the road. The drivers are distracted by cell phone conversations, text messaging, and all types of other distractions. And believe it or not. . . . there are also angry and frustrated people driving those cars who actually try to do things on purpose to scare the pedestrians and cyclists. I still find it incomprehensible that this type of thing goes on. But it does.



Sight or no sight, there will be much risk involved for those bus riders who have to cross these busy intersections. And of course this risk is definitely much higher for those persons with visual or physical disabilities. It is not a display of weakness or helplessness to express concern and also expect special consideration when it comes to the matter of safety. This is merely facing reality and making others aware of what is necessary to responsibly facilitate the independence of the disabled members of our community.



Terri Bowen



----- Original Message ----- From: <ericamccaul@xxxxxxxxxxxx>
To: <tabi@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Sent: Monday, November 09, 2009 11:47 AM
Subject: [tabi] Re: my object to Nova 2010



I so appreciate the spirit of cooperation Darla expresses. I applaud it
for its nobility. I am not at all convinced, however, that it serves us
best, at least in the short term.
To be blunt, courtesy will not mend the injuries that will surely occur
"while the bugs are being worked out." For surely it is not a matter of
IF a bus rider-- disabled or not (though, practically speaking, more
likely disabled)-- gets hit by a motorist while making a transfer, but
WHEN.
In fact, I had an exchange which went something like this at a
listening session I attended a couple of weeks ago:
FELLOW CITIZEN: I hear a lot of FEAR being expressed about these
crossings. I'm wondering if this is just fear of the unknown. I'm
wondering if you even have TRIED to make these crossings.
ME: I have had the amount of vision I now have for my entire life. I
can assure you that I am most able to assess of both my abilities and
my limitations. I have been at many of these intersections, either on
foot or in a car, and have considered them from my personal
perspective. As a responsible adult, making some of these crossing
attempts is not a reasonable risk for me to assume.
Then, Mr. Scheib advanced the idea that as more pedestrian/bus riders
became apparent "out on the streets", drivers would take note and
become more aware and cautious,
to which I remarked, "That's a fine THEORY, but I personally do not
want to be in the crosswalks beta testing it. Who will do that?"
FELLOW CITIZEN: "I will"
Good luck to him. Perhaps his estate can bequeath money to finance
paratransit for those forced off the fixed bus route.

The golden opportunity mentioned reeks of Ivory Tower thinking.
The REAL opportunity is that of being struck by a car, all in the
unfounded hopes that StarMetro will garnish increased ridership.
Erica

-----Original Message-----
From: Darla J. Rogers <djrogers0628@xxxxxxxxxxx>
To: tabi@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Sent: Mon, Nov 9, 2009 11:14 am
Subject: [tabi] Re: my object to Nova 2010

And, this can't all come together at once; it isn't fiscally or
physically
possible, at this time, but I believe we in TCB definitely have Star
Metro's
ear and that Star Metro has demonstrated a willingness to work with us
and
learn from us, but to make this all work seamlessly is going to take
time,
especially in these times of limited budget.

The city can probably apply for grants, as well, so if any one of you
knows
grants that might further the Nova 2010 project, please let Star Metro,
your
city and county commissioners know and do it in a respectful and
logical
manner, as we may never have an opportunity like this again--at least
not
anytime soon.

Darla


----- Original Message -----
From: "blindwilly" <blindwilly@xxxxxxxxxxx>
To: <tabi@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Sent: Saturday, November 07, 2009 9:58 PM
Subject: [tabi] Re: my object to Nova 2010


Chip,

I agree that we are all in a different place.   Even though I think I
have
pretty good mobility, I know that there are many that don't and I
never
forget that.   That is why early in the year, I started a dialog
about
accessibility and I have stayed in the race.   One thing that I want
to
address is, really we are on the same side.   We both want to have
good
accessibility and safe transfers:  it is just a difference in our
approaches to achieve that goal.   Think of this, if one way doesn't
work,
maybe the other will.

We are going to do just fine,
\
William



----- Original Message -----
From: "Allison and Chip Orange" <acorange@xxxxxxxxxxx>
To: <tabi@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Sent: Saturday, November 07, 2009 9:10 PM
Subject: [tabi] Re: my object to Nova 2010


Lynn,

I think Charles is right; we should be brave enough to tell people
what
we
cannot *safely* do; especially if, *if*, there's an alternative;
transfer
points where riders don't have to leave that point, and the planner
told
me
that was possible.

And one more thing Lynn; you're playing with other people's lives;
just
because you're willing to take the chance on crossing a busy
intersection
every day, should not mean that you argue so that others are also
forced
to
do that.

I just talked to a blind person in the last week, who has been blind
over
5
years, and does not yet feel confident in independent travel.  he is
also
totally blind, which does make a *big* difference.

so, I don't feel bad in asking them to do things differently.  I'm
not
doing
a "blackjack" and saying I won't play; not when I'm only asking for
a
change
in design.

and it's not just blind people who are effected; it's anyone in a
wheel-chair, or anyone who's elderly and may not walk as fast as
they
once
did, or is mobility impaired for any number of reasons.

so, I hope you'll think of all these things, and understand I'm
asking
them
to plan for all of these people, not cancel the entire project.

thanks for writing and telling us how you feel.

Chip



-----Original Message-----
From: tabi-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:tabi-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx]
On
Behalf
Of Lynn Evans
Sent: Saturday, November 07, 2009 7:21 PM
To: tabi@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [tabi] Re: my object to Nova 2010

You are correct in saying there are no guarantees when it comes to
life.
it
is a crap shoot. A person steps out boldly from the curb of life
with the
mobility skills we have and takes their chances. You are asking for a
guarantee for city services? You mean like the electricity want
never go
out? The water will never be turned off? The trash will always be
picked
up?


Look at the changes Star Metro has made to their plan so far. We
asked
for a
route description and they gave it to us. Robert asked for the
Village
Square change and they did that.

Let us not do a "Blackjack" here and tell Star metro if they want
play by
our rules then we will not play,. the intersections where the
transfer
points are, need to be made as safe as humanly possible for
EVERYONE.
This
is what we need to tell the city commission.

It scares me to tell anyone, what I can't do. That puts me in a
vulnerable
position in their eyes.

We need to work with Star Metro or we are going to be left on the
curb as
the bus passes us by.



----- Original Message -----
From: Easy Talk <mailto:easytalk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
To: tabi@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Sent: Friday, November 06, 2009 2:40 PM
Subject: [tabi] Re: my object to Nova 2010

Chip,  After much consideration and Soule searching, I am with you
100 percent.  I am one who has been hit at an audible crossing. I am
certainly for decentralization but more work needs to be done and as
Heather
said Star Metro does transportation/buses not Sidewalks, Audible
signals
or
Police Safety.  They can only educate but it is up to other
departments
to
do there part and so far there are no guarantees.

Robert


----- Original Message -----
From: Chip Orange <mailto:Corange@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
To: tabi@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Sent: Friday, November 06, 2009 11:54 AM
Subject: [tabi] my object to Nova 2010

hi all,

I spoke with a StarMetro planner yesterday, and he said only
2 intersections of the possible 41 proposed for transfer points,
currently
have audible signals. (I think Lynn did tell us that).



perhaps, just perhaps, they'll be able to add 10, even 20,
in the next year, but by no means all of them will get audible
signals.

the point I made to him, and the one I intend to make to the
city commission unless there is a dramatic change in the plan, is
that no
intersection, even with an audible signal, is safe for a blind
person to
cross. audible signals only make it somewhat safer, but many of our
local
blind residents can testify about being hit.   I don't think even
our
best,
most skillful, independent travelers, can say that crossing an
intersection
such as many of those proposed by StarMetro is safe; and, a number
of our
blind residents do not fall into the class of our "most skillful"
independent travelers.





I intend to urge the city commission to deny the entire plan
until the safety of disable riders can be assured by never requiring
a
transfer through an intersection; StarMetro has got to be forced to
come
up
with another way to handle transfers.

I know others of you have other objections to the plan, and
I've heard and agree with a lot of them, but this is to me, the
single
really good one, which is good enough to warrant the city commission
stopping implementation until it is worked out.



I do support other objections which have been raised,
including the one I just mentioned that with all the bus stops
moving to
new
locations, they are going to be hard to find, and that the routes
and the
location of stops require a lot of walking at times, which itself is
also
unsafe.  but when I write the commission after the plan is submitted
to
them, I am only going to focus on the safety issue, as I think it's
the
most
important, and I don't want to overwhelm them in my letter with les
important objections.



I hope all of you will consider writing to the city
commission, but not until the plan has been submitted to them.  any
letters
before then are evidently just forwarded to StarMetro, without
engaging
the
commissioners' attention.



thanks.





Chip






------------------------------

Chip Orange
Database Administrator
Florida Public Service Commission

Chip.Orange@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
(850) 413-6314

(Any opinions expressed are solely those of the author and
do not necessarily reflect those of the Florida Public Service
Commission.)





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and please make suggestions for new material.



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web interface, or by sending an email to the address
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and please make suggestions for new material.



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and please make suggestions for new material.



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