Download/listen to this week's episode here.

Cars get all the money/road space; bikes get the lion share of the media attention; but pedestrian transport remains incredibly vital to any town’s infrastructure and citizen satisfaction. So on this episode of Smile Politely Radio, we're talking about that under-publicized, but ever so popular method of transportation, your legs (and/or wheelchair).

We talk to the local city planners currently involved with improving walkability in their cities: Ben LeRoy, Long Range Planner for the city of Champaign, and Rebecca Bird, Planner in Community Development Services. In addition, we are joined by Tyler Zwagerman, Master of Urban Planning student at the U of I's Department of Urban and Regional Planning.

  • We talk about how walking came to be considered an alternative from of transportation and why some neighborhood designs inadvertently discourage walking.
  • We discuss the why and how of making cities pedestrian friendly for all citizens.
  • Finally, we cover the current and future walkability plans in both Champaign and Urbana. Plus, we find out how you can get involved.

As is metioned in this episode, Champaign recently kicked off a new long-range Pedestrian Plan. You can read about it and take a survey at this site. In addition, here is a link to Urbana's Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee.

Smile Politely Radio airs each Friday evening at 5:30 on WEFT 90.1 FM in Champaign, and is available as a podcast the following week.