I read the Saskatoon thread on the Skyscraper Forum page as it has an interesting mix of hearsay, gossip, and actual facts about developments both real and proposed. I came across this great (albeit old) comment by,uh, ‘socialisthorde’ about the situation on 22nd.

Has anyone commenting on the 22nd situation tried to cross that street? It is friggin impossible to cross legally, so I don’t resent people Jaywalking at all. On one occasion, I stood at an unmarked crosswalk (which by the way still means pedestrian right of way – anywhere a sidewalk ends at a road) with two kids for about 2 or 3 minutes one day, clearly gesturing that I wnated to cross (one foot on the street). Legally, the cars should have stopped, but noone even appeared to notice me (I am 6’4″ and was wearing a red jacket, so they had to work hard not to see me). The next marked crosswalk was one block away, meaning we had to go two blocks out of our way, but I figured that was the only way to get across alive. You know what, same thing there. Finally, I told the kids to stay on the sidewalk, while I more agressively stepped forward, only have a cab intentionally brush as close as possible to me. Since he was at least half a block back when I stepped out, at 50km/h, that should have been plenty of room to stop. He honked his horn all the way past as well. In the end we had to walk another block to a controlled intersection to finally get across. I was really pissed, but I have the choice to drive, and was walking only for recreation and because I think it is morally a good thing to do so as much as possible. Most people living in “Alphabet city” don’t have that choice. They don’t have cars. Ironically, that part of the city is actually the most “liveable” by urban lanning standards in the city (i.e. many people get around by alternate transportation, and most services are within walking distance to accomodate that). It is probably also one of the most densely populated parts of the city.

Aside from all that, the “Frogger alley” statement and the comments about it being deserved, or natural selection is appalling. I hope to god that if someone you love is ever killed in an accident that is their fault, people are a little more compassionate to you.

This is why I’m giving you the hairy eyeball any time you start talking ‘fence it off’. The answer is not arresting pedestrians. It’s giving them a safe spot to cross so you don’t go “Welp, gonna die, might as well save a couple metres and go mid-block”. How is installing a fence any cheaper than putting in proper crosswalks? Absolutely unbelievable sometimes how being on foot relegates you to the lowest caste. Also absolutely unacceptable: how it’s okay to suggest people who jaywalk deserve to die. I mean, if this isn’t a sign of a car-centric city, I’m not sure what is. It’s especially egregious when you know the history of jaywalking, and how it was deliberately demonized and then enshrined in law by motor vehicle lobbyists.

It’s time we stopped beating the poor areas with sticks and provided them with the same carrots the wealthier areas have.