• Outdoors Outdoors

Residents share frustrations navigating poor city design: 'The sidewalk just randomly ends'

"They purposely make things difficult so you have to drive."

"They purposely make things difficult so you have to drive."

Photo Credit: TikTok

Most people enjoy a pleasant walk through the town or city they live in. When sidewalks are crumbling, overgrown with foliage, or worse — nonexistent — a simple stroll can become dangerous.

One frustrated resident in Texas shared a video on TikTok of a hazardous walk to visit a new shop. Angela Romero (@angelaromero415) wrote, "POV you live in Houston," followed by a crying-face emoji. 

@angelaromero415 POV you live in Houston 😭 #houston #hotgirlwalk #bagels #coffee ♬ Titanic flute fail - kate dwyer

At the start of the video, Angela said: "A new bagel shop opened 1 mile away so you decide to go on a 'cute little walk.'"

The walk is anything but cute. The sidewalk appears narrow, and cars can be seen whizzing by the pedestrians too close for comfort. One walker even has to dodge trees as they try to remain on the path. 

Many commenters recognized the terrain in the footage. One user said: "Texas is horrible for walking anywhere."

Walking is a healthy and eco-friendly alternative to driving, saving the planet from toxic air pollution. Cities with appropriate pedestrian infrastructure design allow residents to safely walk to restaurants and stores, or even simply to a neighbor's home.

Unfortunately, many cities' sidewalks look like the one featured in the TikTok video. They're situated too close to drivers, falling apart, or riddled with obstacles.

Walking instead of driving should be an option for everyone. It's great physical exercise and benefits the planet. The University of Michigan reports: "Every gallon of gasoline you save avoids 22 pounds of CO2 emissions [since the carbon dioxide pulls oxygen out of the air]. ... Avoiding just 10 miles of driving every week would eliminate about 500 pounds of carbon dioxide emissions a year!"

Thankfully, some companies are working to offer additional eco-friendly types of transportation (no greenwashing here), like e-biking. The United States government has also recently announced funding to improve transportation, including upgrades to sidewalks and bike paths.

Hopefully, cities everywhere will follow suit and improve their sidewalks. 

"It's the fact that some towns don't have sidewalks PERIOD too," one commenter said. 

The video ends with a pedestrian walking up what appears to be a highway overpass. One user joked: "And then the sidewalk just randomly ends."

Another TikToker commented: "It's disgusting how we made cities for cars and not for people."

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