Eye-opening stats on freeway removal
A page one story called "Needed: An expanded campaign to tear down urban freeways" in the April-May issue of Better! Cities & Towns focuses on the benefits of tearing down sections of urban freeways.
One of the projects that we report on is the Cheongyecheon freeway in Seoul, Korea, removed to expose a creek and create a stunning new urban park. Patrick Kennedy of the Walkable Dallas-Fort Worth blog provides additional statistics on the project:
• Removed 8.5 miles, which moved 1.5 million cars per day.
• Cost: $33 million per mile to remove and restore stream.
• Within ten years of the initial elevated highway construction, Seoul CBD lost 40,000 residents and 80,000 jobs.
• Housing value increased 30%
• Number of vehicles in the area per day dropped 43%
• Summer temperatures: 8 degrees cooler
• Air quality: 21% less tiny particulate matter called PM10
• NO2 dropped 20%
• BETX pollutants dropped 25% overall and 65% in certain areas
• 125,000 visitors come to the park each weekend day. 53,000 during weekdays
• 113,000 new jobs have been created along the corridor
• Long term economic benefits estimated between $8.5 and 25 billion
Here's an image of the park created in place of the freeway: