A Patch of Grass

Barry Watkins 5/21/2015

A1A and US192 Goal #2: Separate cars from bikers and walkers

Most of us like to be close to nature, don’t we? So how does this strike you? A nice patch of grass to green up this landscape alongside US192 in Melbourne!

patch of grass

US192 in Melbourne

Yeah, the small patch of grass in the above picture isn’t quite cutting it, is it? Ha. We’ve been talking about how to make US192 and A1A more walkable and safer for all users of the street. One way would be to create some separation between the sidewalk and the cars whizzing by. How about a tree lawn with some shade trees?


Street Trees in front of Brevard County Administration Building

There, isn’t that better?! Street trees need to become the standard on all of our streets in any populated area in Brevard! It is working on this busy 40mph street in Viera. Why not all over the county? Don’t you think this would be a great way to save lives and could help to make walking and biking around our towns a much more pleasant experience? Adding trees like this on A1A and US192 will separate cars from people on the sidewalk and would also slow vehicle speeds! The trees close to the vehicle lanes helps drivers gauge how fast they’re actually going and tell them when they’re going too fast. Drivers also automatically slow down a little because the trees create an interesting and pleasant view as well as a sense of enclosure as they drive down the street. Here’s an article about this effect and many of the other benefits street trees bring and why we should put them on every street in town: “22 Benefits of Street Trees” by Dan Burden http://tinyurl.com/street-trees-dan-burden. The positive effects are numerous and the initial cost to plant a tree is returned to the community many times over during its lifetime.

We can do a nice, big tree lawn like the picture above where it makes sense. We might need to use smaller landscape strips where the speeds are slow enough and where space might be an issue.

Celebration small planting strips

Small Planting Strips, Celebration, Florida

We can also use tree wells or small planters in higher-activity places like in our downtowns and commercial areas.

All signs point  to a party in  Cocoa Village, which will host a Mardi Gras event on Feb. 9.

Sidewalk planters in Cocoa Village

Officials and citizens, do you agree we need more street trees in Brevard? Contact us for help. We can present the benefits to your local planning board and help your community create a workable plan to get the trees planted! Imagine what a difference this will make all over our beautiful county!

Walkable Brevard walkablebrevard@gmail.com 321-355-2747 Join the conversation on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/walkablebrevard @walkablebrevard #A1A #US192

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