Our 21st century cities and those of us who live and work in them have transportation requirements that have little in common with the historical patterns. Our actual service needs are closer to what we can see in successful car-based systems than the patterns associated with traditional public transport. That is to say, user requirements in this new-life system are for the most part not linear (i.e., many-to-many) , nor strictly time-cadenced.
The just-elected new Mayor of Paris, Madame Anne Hidalgo, has prepared a revolutionary sustainable mobility project whereby virtually all of the streets of the city will be subject to a maximum speed limit of 30 km/hr.
The only exceptions in the plan are a relatively small number of major axes into the city and along the two banks of the Seine, where the speed limit will be 50 km/hr, and the city’s hard pressed ring road (périphérique) where the top permissible speed has recently been reduced from 80 to 70 km/hr. At the other end of the slowth spectrum are a certain number of “meeting zones” (zones de rencontre) spotted around the city in which pedestrians and cyclists have priority but mix with cars which are limited to a top speed of 20 km/hr. A veritable révolution à la française.
This article by Todd Litman of the Victoria Transport Policy Institute has just appeared in the December 2013 issue of the United Nation’s “Transport and Communications Bulletin for Asia and the Pacific.” It reinforces many of the strategies and principles set out in the New Mobility Agenda 2014/15 program, and provides useful reading for anybody concerned with transportation, mobility and public space improvements in Penang and George Town. A summary introduction to the full paper follows extracting a final section on Optimal Congestion Solutions and the Conclusions. The full paper is recommended and freely available at http://www.unescap.org/ttdw/Publications/TPTS_pubs/bulletin82/b82_Chapter1.pdf.
- Csaba Mezei reports from Budapest
In the field of mobility, Hungary typifies the formerly communist countries of Central and Eastern Europe. Municipal public transport is well-developed and its modal share is relatively high (e.g. 61 percent in the capital city Budapest). However, the quality of public transport systems is declining due to decreasing state subsidies. Car ownership is still a status symbol and governments are keen to placate car owners and support motorised individual transportation rather than sustainable community solutions. In cities the health impacts of transport include a high rate of respiratory decease and allergies. The situation can be expected to get worse with increasing air pollution (especially particulates), noise, and congestion.
Phase 1 Report & Work Program for 2014
A Public Enquiry by Think City & EcoPlan International
Eric Britton, 21 November 2013
Carsharing is most unevenly distributed over the world map. There are great extremes, running from countries like Switzerland in which it is universally known and widely practiced, to the situation of most countries on the planet where even the word is not much known. For this reason our 2013 country profiles have to be ingenious and flexible, one size will not fit all, if we are to give our readers a feel for the full range of practices and issues. Let’s have a look, starting with some “carshare basics”.
Paris, 21 October 2013. How much we learned about car sharing, and more importantly sustainable transport in cities, over the last decade and a half? To put that question into perspective, please find below the full text of a year 2000 collaborative report prepared here in Paris with the help of knowledgeable colleagues from around the world which does a pretty good job of summing up the state-of-the-art state of thinking about these matters at the end of the 20th century. Have a look at this 13 year old overview of the industry and its prospects, and tell us what you think.
This free, cooperative, independent, international communications program supports carsharing projects and programs, world wide. Since 1997 it offers a convenient place on the web to gather and share information and independent views on projects and approaches, past, present and planned future, freely and easily available to all comers.
- – > Check it out at http://worldcarshare.com/
Thanks to the Dutch Kennisplatform Verkeer en Vervoer (KpVV) (which I roughly translate to the Knowledge Platform for Traffic and Transportation) for this excellent update (June 2013) on the situation for carsharing in the Netherlands. It is part of a series entitled “Trends and developments in the field of sustainable and smart mobility”. The numbers are interesting and tell a story, and their analysis is first-class. Recommended reading and in the hope that we shall shortly be able to share with our readers similar country reports and updates of the state of car sharing in other countries, both in Europe and beyond.
The goal of this year’s Sustainable Penang Autumn project is to use the dialogues and other contacts in order to define a series of at least ten “transformative actions” that can be planned and carried out over the fifteen months following this first program. With an eye to then reviewing progress action by action in a second event to take place in Penang in the opening months of 2015. A sort of open progress report and collaborative reflection for next steps.
If you have any interest in new mobility innovations in Korea, you might care to check out New Mobility Korea: our new group site at http://www.facebook.com/NewMobilityKorea. At this point it is a combination of an empty box and the first step in a thought experiment. We’ll see what comes of it.
The City of New York after something like four years of looking, envying, cogitating, visiting, copying, adapting, hoping, planning, protesting, hesitating, adapting, postponing, innovating, negotiating, and finally getting the job done is about to open its doors for the grand opening of its new bike share project, Citi Bike.
This excellent review of ridesharing history, practices, trends and issues in North America was recently presented by its author, Susan Shaheen of the University of California, Berkeley, to a Webinar organised by the Ridesharing Institute. You may want to give particular attention to her last two pages which are more forward looking: Key Questions from Workshop and Factors to Consider.