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Sounding Off: Let's repurpose city streets for good

April 14, 2011

Since automobiles became widespread during the beginning of the 20th century, cities and their streets have been and are being repurposed to adapt to the surge of motor vehicle use. Efforts are now underway to redefine the purpose of streets and to redesign streets over time in a way that will benefit all users.

This movement has various names: "Livable Streets," "Context Sensitive Streets" and "Complete Streets." Despite the diverse nomenclature, all of these efforts focus on creating streets that are multipurpose in nature. Such streets are not only tasked to accommodate private motor vehicles, but also pedestrians, cyclists, public transport, "active living," businesses and environmental concerns.

They are multimodal transport links as well as places for social life. Complete streets are safer, quieter, produce less smog, soot, burn less fuel and have less auto congestion.

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If you are interested in learning about the movement, the Complete Streets Task Force meets at 4 p.m. the second Tuesday of the month at the Community Center, 380 Third St. Also, Transition Laguna Mobility Group will meet at 6:30 p.m. Monday at 415 Loma Terrace. For more information, call (949) 494 5960.

MICHAEL HOAG is a Laguna Beach resident.

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