Editorial: No FPT without SCR (Systematic Car Reductions)

This is a simple fact! Free Public Transport (FPT) has no possible justification whatsoever unless your governing officials are willing to do something about adjusting the other half of the modal mix to bring down car ownership and use in the city strategically and as quickly as possible . . . SCR – Systematic Car Reductions.

canada-vancouver-road closed - smaller

The tools for achieving these necessary adjustments in the modal split are well known, experience-proven and widely used in cities of all sizes in many parts of the world. There is no possible justification that competent public authorities not be aware of these proven tools and policies. They include most notably: Continue reading

Zetabytes, Open Systems and Worrying about Equity

Zetabytes, Open Systems and Worrying about Equity

This is the first in a series on big data and its impact on society from CSPO co-
zetabyte-image-largedirector Daniel Sarewitz, published in Slate on 27 Dec. 2012. It also appears on As We Now Think, a site edited by the Consortium for Science, Policy, and Outcomes at Arizona State University. ASU is a partner in Future Tense with Slate and the New America Foundation.

We share this with our readers with one eye to our on-going Zetabytes/Open Systems series that will be getting close attention in the year ahead — with the other eye to our Equity-Based Transport series, also to continue full speed ahead in 2013. Continue reading

For your holiday reading pleasure: Top twenty World Streets postings in 2012

While you are away from the office and the pressures to stay on ws-newsstand-smallfocus, here for your holiday reading pleasure are the twenty most read articles to appear in World Streets over 2012.  Quite a varied lot, and when your editor reads them he generally prefers to do so not at a desk but seated comfortably with a tablet or largish window smartphone in hand to take advantage of those unstructured unexpected free moments that can pop up in any day. After all, World Streets is for the reflective back of your mind, not the whirring front. Continue reading

Signals, Perception, Behavior : Questions, Blurs and Hints

In transportation circles, most often in Europe but not uniquely there, we often hear the term “behavior modification”, which is usually brandished as something brain2that somebody else has to learn to do and cope with. More often than not this matter of behavior modification when it comes to how, when and where people drive cars, but we can also hear about it with reference to pedestrians, cyclists and other drivers and street denizens. And as we can see from the results, this matter of behavior and modification turns out to be quite a challenge. Continue reading

Cities, Transport and Equity in Africa: Unasked Questions

In a fair world it should be unthinkable to ignore the needs of close to one billion africa-girls-in-trafficof the poorest people on the earth living in its second-largest and second most-populous continent. A part of the world with already one-third of the population living in cities, most of whom in slums, and with the flow of people from the country side continuing at record rates.

The transportation arrangements in most people’s daily lives in Africa come in several flavors, few of them appetizing: ranging from world-class traffic jams making it close to impossible to negotiate the streets of the larger cities for hour each day, to at the other extreme no provision for vital survival transport (water, wood for fires, food) for the remainder of the continent. Continue reading

New Mobility Consult: 2013

One way of looking at World Streets and its world wide network of diverse international partners, publications, programs, multiple networks, complex systems networkfocus groups. continuing research and professional activity in our chosen field is to see it as the visible tip of a very large iceberg of experience and competence which can be put to work on your projects and programs.  The greater part of this considerable mass is the New Mobility Agenda, an open collaborative program that has been in constant progression since 1988.  By making use of our consultancy and advisory services through New Mobility Consult, you are, I might add, also helping us to fund and carry on with the non-profit work of the journal. Here are some of the ways in which this competence can be put to work for your city, agency or firm.

Continue reading

Op-Ed: Toward More Prosperous Cities

- Op-Ed Contributor: Wendell Cox, published 14 Dec. 2012. Comments invited

I appreciate Eric Britton’s gracious invitation to contribute my views on cities and urban transport to World Streets. Obviously, many readers will disagree with all or part the article. Nonetheless, the state of knowledge is never complete and progress continues to depend on open minds and civil discussion of perspectives among people of good will. There is extensive use of “hyperlinks,” which provide direction to greater detail for any interested. The article begins with the public policy context, then follows with urban policy, urban transport and sustainability. Continue reading

Albert Hirschman in Latin America: Notes on Hirschman´s Trilogy on Economic Development.

Albert HirschmanThis paper published in 2004 by professor Ana Maria Bianchi of the Faculty of Economics of the University of São Paulo  offers more in this series on the work and considerable contributions of the great economist and social scientist Albert Hirschman who died on Monday of this week in Princeton New Jersey. (Also see the earlier homage that appeared here “Earth, receive an honoured guest. In Memory of Albert O. Hirschman” at http://wp.me/psKUY-2DJ )
Continue reading

WS FB cover 11dec12

My basic theory about 2013 is this:

If what we try to do in 2013 looks like something that we would have done back in the late years of the last century, it will not be good enough.  That’s the test I try to apply to my work every day.

Being different is not a guarantee of success.  But NOT being different is a guarantee of sure failure. Continue reading

My basic theory about 2013 is this.

Letter from Bangalore: The Derelict Mile

Sujaya Rathi  reports from Bangalore:
india-bangalore-pedestria woman crossingPrivate vehicles in India have seen an unprecedented growth in past two decades and there is no sign of slowing down.  Many initiatives to curb the trend have not been successful.  This article highlights an important aspect that attribute to the above unsustainable phenomenon, which has been ignored: “The Derelict Mile”.
Continue reading

Earth, receive an honoured guest. In Memory of Albert O. Hirschman

Lyon. 12 December 2012. A personal tribute for my friends and family.

Albert HirschmanThe news came in the middle of the night in the cold winter of Lyon. My professor and life example Albert Hirschman has left us. And I am finally very glad, because those last few years of illness were far too harsh for any man or woman to bear.

I have a hard time in organizing my thoughts this cold morning, but two things I do know and would like to share with you. The first being that Albert Hirschman was a great man and a huge influence in the field that he had chosen for his own, economics in the broadest sweep of the term.  And well beyond that. Continue reading

Heads-up: To avoid duplicate mailings from Facebook

Dear Patient Reader,

overloaded inboxTo avoid duplicate mailings from our various programs and fora, it may be useful to note the difference between our two main FB pages at (1) http://www.facebook.com/NewMobilityAgenda and (2) http://www.facebook.com/worldstreets.  The former posts only information that appears in World Streets (http://worldstreets.org), while the latter includes all these but also contains other pieces, heads-up and observations from our vigilant editor. Continue reading

Heads-up: To avoid duplicate mailings from Facebook

Op-Ed: The Story of UK Roads/Streets

  • UK police accidentPoorly designed roundabouts – enabling even HGV’s to travel around them at speed, the police thinking a cyclist could make a driver aware of “him” with a bell or a whistle…
  • Police on bicycles without blue lights or sirens, chasing others through red lights… then stopping others for doing the same, who proceeded with caution,
  • Advanced stop lines seem to provide little benefit, and may have been partly to blame for the death of Cynthia McVitty’s daughter.
  • Humans get territorial, and thus cycle lanes become hazards for cyclists when too narrow, and for pedestrians when they step onto them,
  • Too many cyclists in the UK cycle at speeds inappropriate to the situation.

- Ian Perry. Cardiff, Wales, UK ianenvironmental@googlemail.com

Op-Ed: The Story of UK Roads/Streets.

Op-Ed: Awful Injustice in Parking

Misguided parking policy is harmful and unjust.

No surprise there, you may say. There is no shortage of complaints about parking prices (“unfair!”) and about how difficult it is to find parking. We hear the same thing all over the world, whether in Sydney, San Francisco, Singapore, Moscow, Delhi , Jakarta, Beijing, Sao Paolo, Lagos or Nairobi.

Sorry to be unsympathetic. But complaints like those are a problem. They are fuel for the never-ending push for more parking and cheaper parking.

So what? Continue reading

Op-Ed: Awful Injustice in Parking

Civil Society and European Union Policy and Practice in the Field of Transportation

Look out. This time our friends over at the European Economic and Social angry public meetingCommittee (JDE62) in Brussels are doing a terrific thing. Tomorrow morning they open their doors for a one day conference and peer brainstorm on Civil Society and European Union Policy and Practice in the Field of Transportation (my title).  As latest background information you will find here the final copy of their program and a list of their speakers, panelists, etc. Continue reading

Cities of the Future: From Norway with love

cities of the future-2Cities of the Future are densely built. This means we can walk and cycle instead of using cars, reducing pollution. Fewer cars and roads make more room for bike paths and parks. This makes our cities prettier and makes us healthier. The parks will also help absorb the increasing rainfall expected in the future.  Cities of the Future is a collaborative project between the Norwegian Government and the 13 largest cities in the country to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and make our cities better places to live. Continue reading

Cities of the Future: From Norway with love

Oops! What is happening to the American Dream? Are cars on the way out?

The concept of ‘Peak Car’ responds to the fact that developed countries around the world are seeing car traffic level off rather than increase in line with forecasts car early ladies policemanlike this, and that in dense urban areas traffic levels are declining. And the inaccuracy (of traditional forecasting methods) has always been one way – massively overestimating the amount of driving people will do. A major report today from the UK shows some of the factors behind patterns of car use, and how policies can change future trends. Continue reading

Consultancy and Advisory Services: 2013

pen-paperOne way of looking at World Streets and its partners, multiple networks, continuing research and professional activity in our chosen field is to see it as the tip of a very large “iceberg” of experience and competence which can be put to work on your projects and programs. By making use of and supporting our consultancy and advisory services, you are also helping us to fund and carry on with the journal. Here are some of the ways in which this competence can be put to work in collaboration with others. Continue reading

Support World Streets (And why)

We have no money gentlemen, so we shall have to think.
– Ernest Rutherford, on taking over Cavendish Laboratory in 1919

World Streets is an independent  public interest publication which, as a matter of policy, we make freely available to all who are looking to understand, support, and contribute to the sustainability agenda anywhere in the world. We firmly believe that there should be no barriers, and especially not commercial ones, to the free circulation of news, tools, counsel and peer exchanges when it comes to the important issues of sustainable development and social justice.  To ensure our full independence we do not accept advertising. We depend on the support of our readers, concerned public agencies, foundations and actors in the private sector to keep going. Continue reading

Is World Streets doing its job? We asked 100 experts for their views – – and 101 responded.

World Streets needs to catch on before my feet get wet. – The  Netherlands

The results are there for all to see and judge. And we now know that we are going to need a literal world wide web of inputs, collaboration and other forms of support if we are to continue this independent international sustainability adventure in the year ahead. Is what we are doing useful and worthy of support? 101 of our readers picked up their pens and responded to our question. Continue reading

Congestion as policy. (I have seen worse.)

Whether or not congestion is “good” is one thing.  But what is for sure is that one way or another congestion is policy, or at the very least a policy option. And in some cases quite possibly a wise one. Now this has been said many  times  by any people in many places, yet despite its incontrovertible wisdom the message continues to get lost on policy makers.  So in cases like this, we have to take a page out of the book of good people who us sell soap and cars, and keep repeating our message. Today, let’s hand over the podium to Kent Strumpell  from Los Angeles and see what he had to say on our subject in LA Streetsblog back in early 2008. To this reader it has lost none of relevance over almost half a decade.  Read on. Continue reading

2013 Work Program Highlights

In the following you will find brief introductions to the selected major policy areas around which we intend to focus and organize our work program over the year ahead. For more you are invited to click the title lines in each case, which will take you directly to the full set of materials and articles thus far developed on that broad topic area under our work program since the first issues of World Streets appeared in the opening days of 2009. Continue reading

THINKING ABOUT CHINA: 2013-2015

The drive to sustainable transport and sustainable cities in China is one of the central focuses of the World Streets 2013-2015  work program just getting underway (it would have to be, wouldn’t you say?), as you will see on the small menu item  just to your top/left here.  Thus far it is organized in two parts:

  • What World Streets has had to offer thus far – Click here
  • And from our Facebook page of this title – Click here

- – – >But stay tuned. More to follow here

Thinking about China: 2013-2015