Until a few years ago, space beyond the curb was for parking, picking stuff up, getting on a bus and dropping stuff off.
Curb space was for accessibility by vehicle. Very valuable space.
So logically, there was no place for uses that reduced accessibility – especially when the intent was just the opposite, to get people to linger.
Photo by Cal
Because of the pandemic, we’ve quickly made space for Non-Motordom users who need more space. But now there is less parking and vehicle accessibility.
Is that a fair trade-off? Only if there’s no alternative for those with no alternative.
And there is: the space beyond the patio. As part of a slow street, double-parking and double-sitting is the expected way. If on slow streets, pedestrians can walk down the middle of the street, cars can stop and linger for a bit too.
This way of thinking about a street violates the understanding we have had of Motordom, where the vehicle retains dominance. Those who wish to maintain Motordom are using marginalization – ableism, ageism – as a defense, assuming that the needs of seniors and the disabled can only be respected with the full apparatus of a 20th-century road system.
Where the space beyond the curb is for cars. And that’s so not so.