Walking is the most important mode of human transportation. Nevertheless, in transportation, walking is seen more as an annoyance than anything. This bias is baked in to the languate of transportation engineering. The very word "pedestrian" means "lacking in vitality, imagination, distinction, etc.; commonplace; prosaic or dull".
I'm going to try to convince you to purge the word "pedestrain" from your vocabulary.
Leave it to the road building establishment to replace the short and neutral term "walk" with the mouthfull "pedestrian". And if you delve into the manuals on "pedestrian design", you will see a grim experience indeed. The pedestrian's habitat is concrete and paint stripes. Bollards and signals boss them around. Concerns arise on how "compliant" they are to crossing the street. This "pedestrian" language downgrades walking to be as dull as driving a car, but without the priority given to motoring.
The strength of walking, as a mode, is measured in an entirely different dimension than motoring speed. Walking is spontaneous. It is human. It is filled with serendipity. Here are some quotes I've collected to illustrate the experience of walking in the real world:
"Walking should be safe, dignified, and delightful!" -Andy Thornley, SF Bike Coalition (with my apologies)
"What attracts people most, it would appear, is other people." -William Whyte
Strolling is almost a lost art in New York; at least, in the manner in which it is so generally practised in Harlem. Strolling in Harlem does not mean merely walking along Lenox or upper Seventh Avenue or One Hundred and Thirty-fifth Street; it means that those streets are places for socializing. One puts on one’s best clothes and fares forth to pass the time pleasantly with the friends and acquaintances and, most important of all, the strangers he is sure of meeting. One saunters along, he hails this one, exchanges a word or two with that one, stops for a short chat with the other one. He comes up to a laughing, chattering group, in which he may have only one friend or acquaintance, but that gives him the privilege of joining in. He does join in and takes part in the joking, the small talk and gossip, and makes new acquaintances. He passes on and arrives in front of one of the theatres, studies the bill for a while, undecided about going in. He finally moves on a few steps farther and joins another group and is introduced to two or three pretty girls who have just come to Harlem, perhaps only for a visit; and finds a reason to be glad that he postponed going into the theatre. The hours of a summer evening run by rapidly. This is not simply going out for a walk; it is more like going out for adventure.
by James Weldon Johnson
New York, NY: A. A. Knopf
It has long been the fashion in Louisville transportation advocacy to mimic the language used by transportation engineers. Particularly, we overuse the word "pedestrian". That reinforces the notion of walking as a subordinate idea to motoring, and we will continue to get our public places designed primarily by traffic engineers. They will be sterile, and have excellent drainage, but no trees, no cats, no play, and ultimately no reason to go. Indeed, the very language is intentionally designed to create habitats for motoring:
Before the American city could be physically reconstructed to accommodate automobiles, its streets had to be socially reconstructed as places where cars belong. Until then, streets were regarded as public spaces, where practices that endangered or obstructed others (including pedestrians) were disreputable. Motorists' claim to street space was therefore fragile, subject to restrictions that threatened to negate the advantages of car ownership. Epithets—especially joy rider—reflected and reinforced the prevailing social construction of the street. Automotive interest groups (motordom) recognized this obstacle and organized in the teens and 1920s to overcome it. One tool in this effort was jaywalker. Motordom discovered this obscure colloquialism in the teens, reinvented it, and introduced it to the millions. It ridiculed once-respectable street uses and cast doubt on pedestrians' legitimacy in most of the street. Though many pedestrians resented and resisted the term and its connotations, motordom's campaign was a substantial success.
Peter D. Norton
Street Rivals: Jaywalking and the Invention of the Motor Age Street
Technology and Culture - Volume 48, Number 2, April 2007, pp. 331-359
The first step in building a better place is using the right vocabulary. Banish engineering terms like "pedestrian" from your speech, and replace it with everyday words like "walking".