I wholeheartedly agree with Mr. McLean’s views and commend him on his honest comments regarding the traffic situation on our roads.
He states that most residents would prefer the supposed convenience of driving their own vehicles instead of supporting improvements to the gridlock, which we all face at certain times of the day.
And therefore all the government can do is use available resources to accommodate them in their wishes.
This is probably sad but correct. On an island of just over 50,000 residents, there are over 30,000 vehicles. I assume this includes children as well. As we are not going to make this island larger some things must be done, as I think we can all agree traffic has a profound impact on quality of life, not to mention the loss of life we have witnessed. Public transport, as Mr. McLean pointed out, is the most sensible and reasonable solution.
Larger buses, wider-ranging routes and schedules would help; if people used the buses. But as he so aptly pointed out, it also requires a change in mindset. Recently my car needed repairs, so I took the bus to work.
We were still stuck in traffic, but I could relax and did not have the frustration of the driver. Going out in the evening is a problem also, as buses do not run in many areas after seven o’clock. Sunday, we are just plain out of luck. These however are not peak times for traffic. So the solution seems to be in providing a more efficient public transit system, whether it be private or otherwise.
Although I do not have a child in school and I am also not sure how comprehensive the school bus routes are, but it was very obvious when schools were not in session there was a marked decrease in the amount of traffic. Improvements in school bus pick-up points and the refusal of parents to accommodate children who simply refuse to take the bus to school may be part of a solution.
The other of course is ride-sharing, and perhaps tolls for people who enjoy solitude while their car idles in traffic. The number of riders on a medium-sized transit bus as opposed to the same number sitting individually in cars is in the order of one hundred yards.
Keep adding, all those single-occupant vehicles deleted into several buses and you could be where you wanted to go without the stress of sitting aimlessly in traffic.
Think about it.
One other problem, for those without the convenience of a vehicle, is the ability to grocery shop easily.
A comprehensive transit system could perhaps also have buses that would stop at the major stores, or even better a home delivery offered from stores.
For a fee, groceries could be left at the store and delivered to the shopper’s door later on. How nice would that be?
But in all, we must get over our compulsion to drive our own vehicles, everywhere all the time and our resistance to what could make life on this island much more enjoyable; an improved, rider friendly, scheduled and more convenient transit system in whatever form we choose. And support it. And use it. Or…we could all move to Los Angeles.
I’ll see you in traffic.