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Transportation

Drivers Not Wanted on Oakland’s ‘Slow Streets’

The California city isn’t the first to experiment with car restrictions in the coronavirus pandemic, but its plan to discourage drivers is the most extensive.
A family walks down West 19th Street in Oakland, part of the city's "slow streets" network.
A family walks down West 19th Street in Oakland, part of the city's "slow streets" network.Oakland Department of Transportation

Last week, Oakland, California, announced a bold answer to shelter-in-place coronavirus claustrophobia: To create more outdoor space and safer corridors for essential travel by foot or bike, the city would restrict access to vehicles on nearly 74 miles of city street — about 10% of the city’s street network.

“In this unprecedented moment we must do everything we can to ensure the safety and well-being of all families across our city,” stated Mayor Libby Schaaf. “Closing roads means opening up our city.”