We often hear that transportation reform is going to require massive public investments, large construction projects, elaborate technology deployments, and above all and by their very nature are going to take a long time before yielding significant results. This is quite simply not true. This approach, common in the last century and often associated with the “American transportation model”, no longer has its place in a competitive, efficient, democratic city And we can start tomorrow, if we chose to.
To get a feel for this transformative learning reality let’s start with a quick look at a first lot of ideas for Slow Street Architecture as a major means for reducing traffic related nuisances, accident prevention and improving quality of life for all. These approaches are not just “nice ideas”. They have proven their merit and effectiveness in hundreds of cities around the world. There is no good reason that they cannot do the same in your city. Starting tomorrow morning.
(For further background on external sources feeding this listing, see Sources and Clues section below.)
The First Car Free Days Challenge: Toledo Spain, October 1994
Short History: Whereas Car Free Days have been organized in cities around the world all over the year for the last two decades, there is inevitably a spate of high activity in the month of September, much of it the result of the European Commission’s continuing commitment to both the concept of Car Free Days and their own European Mobility Week. And each year we here at World Streets dig into our archives and dust off one or two of the classics as a timely reminder of the fact that the Car Free Day concept has been around and doing its bit since the first international announcement and challenge was made in Toledo Spain on 19 October 1994.
Why do we bother to do this year after year? After all, there is copious documentation and background available at a click, as a quick tour of Google of those three little words yields somewhat more than 55,000 entries, including a fair if distinctly uneven introduction in the Wikipedia article https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Car-Free_Days. The problem is that most of this material seriously misses the point, and as a result often handicaps cities and groups wishing to organize a Day (a week or month close) to underestimate potential of this approach. The trick is that all of this is quite a simple as it may at first glance appear.
To this end, here we are once again minding the store with the original 1994 article announcing the concept, along with several others from our archives which would appear here in the coming days. A general reference which the reader may find of use is the general introduction which appears here – https://worldstreets.wordpress.com/tag/car-free-days/. You will find at the end of this reposting, three separate annexes which provide supplemental background on (Annex A) New Mobility – 1988-1994 Program Summary; (B) Other Tools to Get the Job Done; and (C) a listing of more recent references.
Toledo (Spain), 22 Sept. 1994 . Ciudades Accessibles (Accessible Cities) Conference
“Every day is a great day to take a few cars off the street and think about it.”
Here is how the Car Free Days movement got started and has taken shape over the last 24 years. This is the second in a series of articles which we update and post annually just prior to the September rush to get the latest batch of Car Free Day/New Mobility Agenda projects off the ground. We hope that these pieces and the references you find here are going to prove useful to those responsible for making a success of their Days in 2018 and beyond. Getting a CFD right and making it a real success is no easy task — good knowledge of what has worked and not worked in the past should serve you well. Continue reading
Credit: Simphewe Nkwali (Eco-Mobiliy Johannesburg
* * * COLLABORATIVE THINKING EXERCISE (DRAFT 1) * * *
– Government of the people, by the people, for the people
Please have a look and, if interested, may we have your thoughts about these and other impact areas that in your view need to be taken into consideration in order to have a full and shared understanding of these impacts of the proposed and latest SDS Penang Transport Master Plan.
We need to be clear about this. The objective here is not to criticize or belittle the State’s efforts at improving the short-comings and potential of today’s transportation arrangements in Penang. Rather the goal is to provide open citizen feedback to their proposals to all levels of government, civil society and the public at large. As President Abraham Lincoln put it at a hard moment for history in America: “Government of the people, by the people, for the people”. Your responses are welcome here or to firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you.
ON A SCALE OF 0-10: please show us your views concerning how the proposals, measures and their potential set out in the SDS PTMP do in the following legitimate areas of citizen interest and concern. Some of these are quite specialized as you will see as your work your way down the list, but don’t let that bother you. Just share your views with the items that strike your attention. With a careful eye to both long and short term impacts (say in the coming three years, 2018-2020).
* * * For latest version of SDS MP : http://pgmasterplan.penang.gov.my — See below the listing of the principal infrastructure projects proposed by the plan.
And just in case you may not happen to know . . . back in early 2005, the City of Lyon, in close partnership with the firm JCDecaux (street furniture, outdoor advertising) , got together in a lively partnership and for the first time ever in a city anywhere on the planet decided to dump a couple of thousand “public bikes” onto the streets of a city, keep them working and see what happens. And they never looked back.