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Declaration of Pedestrian Rights

All people are pedestrians, and as pedestrians are endowed with certain inalienable rights. Among these rights are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

All too often, people must risk their lives to walk. All too often, people are not at liberty to travel outside the confinement of a motor vehicle. All too often, barren streets allow one to walk, but produce no joy or happiness from the experience.

Whereas, walking is a healthful activity, while physical inactivity is a major cause of obesity, ill health, and early death;

Whereas, walking is friendly to the environment, while many other forms of transportation are major sources of pollution;

Whereas, walking is energy efficient, while motorized transportation uses scarce energy resources;

Whereas, walking teaches children independence, while many children are dependent upon adults for transportation;

Whereas, walking allows the elderly to maintain independence, while auto-oriented sprawl forces many seniors to prematurely leave their homes;

Whereas, walking is economical, while the cost of having several automobiles is a major financial burden on many households;

Whereas, walking promotes informal interactions between people and strengthens community, while many neighborhoods lack any social contact between neighbors;

Whereas, walking is good for the mind and the soul, while too many suffer under stress driving in traffic;

Now therefore be it RESOLVED that:

People shall have a way to walk along the public right of way. Streets and roads in populated areas will include sidewalks or other suitable pathways. People shall have a way to walk across the public right of way.

Streets and roads will include safe, comfortable, and convenient crossings wherever people would reasonably want to cross. People shall have places to walk to. Housing, commercial, and retail developments will be located so as to have a variety of destinations within walking distance. People shall have a welcoming environment. Sidewalks will be a generous width, with shade trees, benches, or other appropriate amenities to make walking pleasant.

People shall have a well-maintained environment. Sidewalks will be kept free of shrubbery, snow, parked cars, and other obstructions. People shall have support from other modes. Transit systems will work as an effective extension of walking.

People shall have full consideration for their range of needs when walking. Persons with disabilities will be accommodated both to the letter and in the spirit of the Americans With Disabilities Act.

People shall be protected from vehicle threats by adequate enforcement of traffic laws. Drivers will respect crosswalk laws.

Hereby adopted by acclamation on the 18th of August, 2001, in Oakland, California.

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Mission Pedestrian
Steering Committee

Debbie Bulger
Cindy Geise
George Ow, Jr.
Emily Reilly
Peter Scott
Vicki Winters


  Mission Pedestrian, 1711 Mission Street, Santa Cruz, CA 95060
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Last updated on Wednesday, 28-Jul-2004 09:10:29 PDT