A feature from the New York Times:

One of the groups leading the new charge is Congress for the New Urbanism. Since 2008, it has published a biennial list called “Freeways Without Futures,” which names highways whose elimination would, according to its website, “remove a blight” from their cities. The 2017 edition includes Route 710 in Pasadena, Calif., Interstate 70 in Denver, Interstate 375 in Detroit and, paved enemy No. 1, the Scajaquada Expressway.

Lynn Richards, the president and chief executive officer of C.N.U., said that removing a highway is “a somewhat radical idea.” “There’s a lot of analysis that needs to go into it about where the traffic is going to go,” she said.

But already, several cities have removed or decommissioned existing highways, including Paris; Seoul, South Korea; Boston; and Portland, Ore. Last year, Rochester buried a portion of a downtown expressway known as the Inner Loop, a stretch of sunken highway the city’s mayor likened to a “moat.” It is being replaced with a boulevard on the same grade as the rest of the streetscape.

And because of a confluence of factors, including the embrace of ride-hailing services like Uber and the rebirth of cities as places to live, work, raise families and retire to, advocates like Ms. Richards see an “incredible opportunity” to remove even more pavement. “When we put out a call last summer for freeways without a future, we got almost 75 recommendations,” she said. “This can kick-start a conversation about the best way to spend infrastructure dollars.”

Full article here.


  1. The group mentioned here should eschew the alliteration on their list ‘Freeways Without Futures’. Roads must not be called freeways. They are horrifically expensive.
    I like the term ’Angstway’. Some of the worst times in my life have been on these black ribbons.
    Taking a word from the article, ’Blightway’ would also be a contender.
    Sticking Moses’ name or Corbusier’s in there might also work – so obsessed were these characters with buzzing people around. Using Moses’ name would be apropos given the association with parting waters. Neighbourhoods are cut out or cut in half by roads.
    Freeway and expressway should never be uttered. Might as well be silly and call them ‘Happyways’.
    Build a boondoggle and they will come. Take it away, as in Seoul, one of the most repulsive cities in the world, and give it back to people for living, not driving.

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