# # #
Since World Streets was taken by assault last week by something like 4000 hits as a result of our article announcing and providing some strategic commentary of the Paris project in which they are committed to reduce speeds to the top limit of 30 Kph page through the entire city – click here if you have not yet seen it – we ended up taking a good critical look at our website, the good, the bad and the frankly ugly, and decided to do some fairly radical spring cleaning. So if you click today to https://worldstreets.wordpress.com/ today, you will see our new look.
Normally your editor tries very hard to keep all postings here focused on the important topics which you will find introduced in our original Mission Statement of 2009, but here exceptionally is a more personal short story which raises some puzzling problems. And I may not be the only one in our extended sustainability family who has run up against this particular weirdness. Continue reading
A great many people apparently, to judge by the reaction to our yesterday’s World Street posting on the decision of the city of Paris to limit virtually all traffic in the city to a top speed of 30 km/hr. That article literally blew the lid off of the normal reader reaction to postings here, which commonly run in the hundreds at most in the several days immediately following publication. In this case we were deluged by more than three thousand readers who checked in from more than 50 countries to see what all this is about. Here you have a map of the showing where the last 80 of these readers came from:
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.
World Streets, together with a number of our readers and supporters, including city cyclists and others working in the sector, have decided to take a public position on obligatory National Cycling Licenses. And that around the world the appropriate agencies and legislative groups, city by city and country by country, will step forward one at a time and when they are ready to pass into their law a requirement that certain road users must take and pass a rigorous National Cycling License examination.
This is a special issue of to celebrate the life and work of our friend, colleague and inspiration, Paul Mees. Paul died at the far too early age of 52 in June 2013. He was a fierce and highly articulate advocate of the public interest. His contributions ranged over traditional academic activities including teaching, researching and publishing but went much wider and embraced campaigning, media activity and an ability to engage with senior public figures in a way that could not be ignored and in a way that exposed the utter wrong-headedness of much Australian and State of Victoria transport policy and spending. He is greatly missed.
This special issue once again reiterates our commitment to sustainable transport, which embraces the urgent need to cut global emissions, reduce the amount of new infrastructure of all kinds, and to highlight the importance of future generations, the poor, those who live in degraded environments and those deprived of human rights by planning systems that put a higher importance on financial objectives for the few, than on the environment and social justice for all..
Lyon, France. 13 May 2014
Please note that this WCFD website is part of a greater whole, and largely that what you find here traces back to a time when this website served as the “Journal of Record” of EcoPlan’s long term World Car Free Days project, which continues to this day. It is semi-conveniently divided into two parts, as follows:
– – > Link to site here
Map showing location of readers consulting World Streets in the last week. Can you find yourself there?
Over the last week we have been hard at work preparing our sources on Car Free Days planning as we do each year. Yesterday’s piece on “Car Free Days Planning and Implementation” provides a summary of this shared resource base. the following map identifies reader hits over the last week by location.
Not to bury you in an enormous amount of materials and references, however if you are interested in finding out what is going on at the leading edge (and at times the lagging edge) of these strategies for reducing the number and negative impacts of cars in cities, here are some useful references based on our work in the field since 1994 .
Fortunately the kinds of pattern-break initiatives that are the core of the Sustainable Penang: New Mobility Program are not altogether unfamiliar in Penang. Over the last decade various agencies and groups have started to think about transportation and environment in different ways, and not only in the abstract.
Here is a shortlist of some of the more innovative related pattern-breaking initiatives already I place and starting to make a visible difference on the streets of Penang. Projects like these do not only change what is happening on the streets but they also, one by one, start to change people’s minds about the city and what they can achieve through their own actions and choices, our most important objective. *
View original post 203 more words