The picture above is one I took this morning while out for a walk. While this blog is often where you see horrific examples of asphalt gone wild in the suburbs, anyone who lives in a community like mine can attest to the beautiful stretches of road that exist - - especially at this time of year.
If a person could string together a mile or so of the sort of roadway you see above -- particularly if it creates a useful route from home to a grocery store or cafe, for instance -- it wouldn't be hard to create an opportunity to walk each and every day. However, the majority of my route this morning was along 51st Street, where traffic averages 45-50 mph (it's posted 35 mph) and the "pedestrian lane" is a narrow edge of the roadway deliniated by a white line.
Fortunately, the city is working to continue a sidewalk that runs in front of the high school and currently gets you about 1/5th of the way between Drexel and Rawson. It connects people to the grocer, pharmacy, and convenience store/gas station that are at the corner of 51st and Rawson. Eventually, many people will be able to make a morning or evening walk towards a cup of coffee or a few groceries part of their daily routine.
That's the challenge we face: Connecting roads like the one above to other roads like the one above. That way, walking becomes organic to daily life.
Why is this important? Watch and listen to the video below (BONUS: This gentleman has an enormously relaxing speaking voice, you'll find).