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Photograph: Courtesy Creative Commons/Flickr/Paul Smith

Liverpool beats NYC to the punch with fast-walking pedestrian lanes

Written by
Kristen Zwicker
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Retailer Argos has opened temporary "Fast Track" lanes in Liverpool's city center after research discovered that 47% of the nation is irked by slow walking. To that research, we offer a resounding, duh. We don't need a Doodle poll to tell us that every New Yorker, at least thrice a week, fantasizes about shouldering a meandering tourist through a store window.

The survey, conducted by Argos, concluded that 69% of 16–24 year-olds support fast lanes, while 37% of those over 55 think they're a good idea. In response, the company has painted markings on the sidewalk outside of its Liverpool store, allowing brisk walkers to circumvent the crowds of dawdling window shoppers. In truth, the lanes are no more than a marketing stunt and will only exist temporarily, starting this past Monday and continuing until Sunday.

The lanes do have us thinking about the may ways that residents of NYC have tried to regulate, remedy, and ostracize the slow walkers among us, from writer Cory Bortnicker's Pedestrian Penalty Cards to that time when Improv Everywhere installed "tourist lanes" on 5th Avenue.

For now, we'll just have to gaze wistfully at those blissfully unimpeded walkers across the pond—but not before stepping to the side of the sidewalk like proper New Yorkers. We hope Mayor de Blasio is paying attention.

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