Wide-walks Cities should narrow streets to make room for wider sidewalks, which would provide spill-out space for businesses and...
Cities should narrow streets to make room for wider sidewalks, which would provide spill-out space for businesses and restaurants; green space for landscaping, urban farming, and picnicking; jogging and bike paths; and noise reduction through elimination of “noise canyons.” Cities could also create a walking rewards program that would provide tax credits for those streets with the highest walkability, and offer citizen reward vouchers for food, entertainment, and public transit as calculated by the citizen pedometer (the more people walk, the more they earn). Wide-walks would also be learning opportunities if location-aware technology alerted walkers to fun facts, lessons, or historical tid-bits as they passed by various points of interest.
This is part 11 of a continuing brainstorm on the future of cities, inaugurated at the Velocity conference in September 2009. We’ll post a new idea each day until we run out, at which point we’re counting on you to come up with something smart. Do you have a good idea for improving your city? Add it in the comments below, or tweet it to @GOOD with hashtag #cityideas—we’ll publish the best ones. Tomorrow’s idea: Pedicab Infrastructure.