Research and discussion for citizens and decision makers

Jay Blazek Crossley

Houston Needs Vision Zero

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A five-year-old boy died in Houston on Saturday while riding his bicycle (“5-year-old boy dies after being struck by SUV,” June 21, No family should have to deal with such a tragedy. However, every two days on average, three people die on the streets of the Houston region - 667 people died in 2014 in the 13-county Houston region. Nearly every single day, another Houston-area family forever loses a loved one, all too often due to a traffic collision that could have been avoided.

Police are reporting the woman driving the car that struck the boy is not facing any charges and was not under the influence or speeding at the time. This outcome doesn’t mean our rules of the road regarding vulnerable road users do not need attention. And the city has several opportunities to make roads safer.


We need streets and sidewalks designed for little boys doing what little boys do. Two urban road safety approaches address this need. The Complete Streets concept, which the city has embraced, is the idea that all Houstonians matter - whether they’re in cars, on two wheels or on foot. And it’s a crucial element of Vision Zero, a multinational road-safety project. Specifically, it is the idea that we should design, allocate funding and build our transportation system for the safety and comfort of all users, regardless of age, ability or mode of transport.


The Houston region’s 134 mayors should commit to Vision Zero by the end of this year, starting with Houston Mayor Annise Parker. And every Houston mayoral candidate should commit to pursuing this vision and making serious progress over the next six years. This crisis will not be fixed overnight, but we can begin making progress immediately.

How could we not try?

I want a Houston region where little kids, seniors and other Houstonians can safely walk, run, bicycle, or drive and where families do not deal with such a tragic loss nearly every day.

Full Story: Crossley: Houston-area traffic deaths are a crisis
Source: Houston Chronicle, June 23, 2015

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