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WJCT’s First Coast Forum: Addressing Jax’s unique traffic problems and our status as one of the least pedestrian and bicycle-friendly cities in the nation.

May 10, 2012

Next First Coast Forum

Airs: Thursday, May 17 at 8pm on WJCT-TV and 89.9 WJCT Public Radio!

As fuel prices continue their inexorable rise, the next First Coast Forum will tackle the issue of transportation and transit in the age of four-dollar a gallon gasoline. Jacksonville Transportation Authority Chairman Ed Burr says the agency will be looking at mass transit as an important part of its mission in the future. But what might that entail? What options are available to move people around the county more efficiently? What mass transit ideas is the North Florida Transportation Planning Organization considering?

As the JTA searches for its next chief executive officer, what opportunities are there to re-evaluate and re-focus its mission?

The city has also frequently been cited as one of the least pedestrian and bicycle-friendly in the nation. Bike advocates want an expansion of bikeways and recognition of bikes as a legitimate transportation alternative. But relations between motorists and bicyclists have oftentimes been acrimonious.

We’ll also look at the question of whether sprawl can be effectively curbed so that future development will be more pedestrian-friendly.


Traffic deaths in Jax up 25% in 2012

The Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office said it’s seeing an increase in traffic fatalities this year compared to last year to date.

As of Tuesday, fatality crashes are up from 39 in 2011 to 52 in 2012.

Single-vehicle crashes involving death are up 90 percent from 10 in 2011 to 19 2012.

Pedestrian deaths are up 100 percent, from seven in 2011 to 14 in 2012.

Of the 32 deaths from a motor vehicle this year, 22 people, or 69 percent, were without seat belts.

Police said pedestrians and bicyclists need to obey traffic laws, and drivers need to be aware of crosswalks, drive cautiously and be aware of their surroundings.

Drivers who hit pedestrians are not always at fault, police said, but they said when it does occur, it is still a traumatic and life-altering experience.

Police said people need to wear their seat belts because they save lives.

Article found on News 4 Jax:

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