Lately, I have been interested in the Urban Planning field. We are told ways to change our lifestyles to improve the environment and lessen the impact of Global climate change, but little is talked about the actual changes to the structure of our physical environment that need to be made. For example, one tip of advise is to bike to work. That is a great idea and many people would love to make that change. But there a real challenges preventing people from switching from driving their car to biking to work. Some of these are concerns for safety on the roadways. Currently, I live in the suburbs and my commute is about 12 miles to work. However, the roads are windy and the other drivers are not compassionate to sharing the roads with bikers. If the suburbs were re-designed to have a separate bike line through planning in the local government, you would see a greater amount of people cutting back on their driving daily to work. Ultimately, these structural changes all for individuals to make actual changes to their lifestyles. Its frustrating to hear constantly from the media that we, the general public are to blame for climate change. Part of that is true, but another aspect the media is not talking about are the physical structures in our society that also contribute to climate change. I believe the majority of people in our country and around the world want to do the right thing but sometimes they have little options to choose from.
Impact of Urban Design on our Environmental Choices