Rainbow Crosswalk

Queering the Streetscape

For Spooky Pride Month, I wanted to imagine what some of our broad streets could look like if you put me in charge of queering the streetscape.

an inclusive pride flag, each stripe labeled with what i deem to be the important parts of a road, and suggested widths for those

The important parts of a street, and suggested widths for Lake St

You’ll notice that while there are no personal automobile lanes listed, there’s still trucks and buses using the road. This vision for Lake St still allows for businesses to receive large deliveries by truck if needed, though ideally they’d transition to getting the majority of deliveries other ways. And, it preserves existing infrastructure, upgrading it at minimal cost. A future version of this might put rail here, or it might be a better plan to restore rail uses on the Greenway. Either way, this could be accomplished with a modest budget over a single season.

a city worker painting a durable rainbow crosswalk

Photo by Seattle Department of Transportation

I’m imagining that there would be crosswalks across all the transportation lanes at least as close as every block, and of course they have the right of way over everyone else.

A streetmix of Lake Street color coded with pride flag colors.

Use all the colors to make a great street.

Imagine your nearest broad street redesigned like this – what changes would that bring to Hennepin? Marshall? West Broadway? Would the number of car-caused deaths and injuries drop dramatically? Would small businesses thrive? Would you meet more of your neighbors? Hang out on streetmix.net , plug in your street’s width, and imagine a better tomorrow. Lake St is 80′, building to building – you can find your street’s width using the measuring tools at https://gis.hennepin.us/Property/Map/default.aspx if you’re in Minneapolis. Banning cars doesn’t happen overnight, but we can get there if we try. Once you have your vision – share it with the world. Talk to your friends, talk to your local reps, see what small changes you can make.