I'm curious about the Strong Towns approach balancing empathy and fiscal resiliency. I saw this article on Joppa in Dallas and see the direct tension. Joppa is a historic Black neighborhood and freedman's town. But it's isolated by physical features (river, rail) that are immovable. Fiscally, spending $8 million on a pedestrian bridge (not to mention an already built vehicle bridge) for 300 homes doesn't fit the Strong Town "do the math", but there's also history and culture here that should be respected and not abandoned. So how do you approach balancing the two?
Daniel Herrig Strong Towns Member Transportation Engineer/Planner
I'm a transportation engineer working in North Texas for a local municipality. My passion is to get people walking and biking. I was introduced to Strong Towns when I was in college several years ago and have been drawn to it over the years as I worked as a consultant with municipalities and now directly for a municipality.
I live in Dallas, Texas with my wife and our dog. We live close to the lake and many trails so it is great to get outside. Being in Dallas, food is a key piece of our lives and we enjoy exploring new and favorite restaurants.
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I work for a local municipality and walk/bike around my neighborhood. Through both I have seen a lack of route condition available to people walking/biking - e.g. a route near my house floods after rain storms but I have no way of knowing until I get there. And cities also lack a good way to get trail condition information - fallen tree limbs, flooding/mud, etc. So I started brainstorming a "waze for cycling" app that could help narrow the gaps in this information sharing to make walking and biking easier. As a long-time reader and supporter of Strong Towns, I would love to get feedback from the Strong Towns community - would it be beneficial or is it unnecessary? Are you using another app that solves this problem? What information are you missing or communications gaps are there that would make it easier to be active walking or biking?
I have more information on my website www.tandemtripapp.com (which also has a survey and link to Facebook) - I'd love people's comments and thoughts on the project. It's just at the start for now exploring needs and interest but may move into development if interest/demand is there.
The goal of the project is as follows:
"Safety, convenience, and reliability are primary concerns for cyclists whether commuting or riding recreationally. Through the development of an app-based online community, crowdsourced reports of obstacles on trails and other bike facilities can warn users of route conditions in real time. This includes report warnings like facility closures, flooding, potholes, construction, etc.
Partnering with local government and advocacy groups, a two-way communication platform is formed to map route conditions in real time, notify city staff of maintenance issues for quicker response, and allow city staff to notify users of construction closures or other events impacting facility conditions."