SAFE CITY STRATEGIES : MANAGING THE TRANSITION. (Working notes for a 2020 Thinking Exercise)

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A COMPENDIUM OF ONE HUNDRED BETTER, FASTER, CHEAPER MEASURES YOUR CITY COULD START TO IMPLEMENT TOMORROW MORNING TO SAVE THE PLANET . . . cut GHG emissions, get people to work on time, reduce traffic accidents, save lives, clear the air, improve health, strengthen the economy, create a sense of community and improve accessibility, mobility and quality of life for all.

FB eric escooter traffic eifel towerWe often hear that sustainable 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.)

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A COMPENDIUM OF BETTER, FASTER, CHEAPER MEASURES your city could start to implement tomorrow morning to SAVE THE PLANET . . . cut GHG emissions, get people to work on time, reduce traffic accidents, save lives, clear the air, improve health, strengthen the economy, and improve accessability, mobility and quality of life for all.

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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.)

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A COMPENDIUM OF ONE HUNDRED BETTER, FASTER, CHEAPER MEASURES YOUR CITY COULD START TO IMPLEMENT TOMORROW MORNING TO SAVE THE PLANET . . . cut GHG emissions, get people to work on time, reduce traffic accidents, save lives, clear the air, improve health, create a sense of community, strengthen the economy, and improve accessibility, mobility and quality of life for all.

FB eric escooter traffic eifel towerWe 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.)

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ON THE OCCASION OF AN EIGHTIETH BIRTHDAY: A few words with my friends

Climate emisssions mobility rapid cuts = The Guardian 5 Dec 2018

The power of a new mobility concept depends not on how well it solves a given, targeted problem. But on how many problems it (partly) solves. –   Marco Te Brömmelstroet

 ON THE OCCASION OF MY BIRTHDAY, A FEW WORDS WITH MY FRIENDS

  • Eric Britton,Convener, World Streets Climate Initiative, Paris. 27 June 2019

Dear friends, colleagues, planners, policy makers, students, professors, people working with local government, engineers, accountants, and above all those of you as active citizens and participants in civil society, whom I have met, not met, collaborated, swapped ideas with, argued, modifying my position and then arguing some more . . . Because as you and I know well, nothing ever stays fixed and final in the world of transport and mobility.

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ON LUUD SCHIMMELPENNINK AND SOCIAL INNOVATION – GREAT IDEAS HAVE WINGS

World Streets is proposing to support the nomination of  the prolific Dutch environmentalist, industrial designer, provocateur Ludd Schimmelpennink  for a major international environmental award for his life-time contributions to sustainable development, sustainable cities and sustainable lives. (Our timetable for this submittal gives us one week from today, 10 November, to finalise the nomination.)

We invite the readers of World Streets to have a look and, if you will, get back to us with your suggestions to (a) edit, expand and improve the nomination whose draft follows.  And once you have had a look and thought about it, you are invited to join us in supporting this unusual nomination. If so, it would be great to have your name, position and organisation( if any), city and country.  And should you wish to add some brief remarks (less than 50 words max.), please do and our earnest editor will do his best.

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FIVE PERCENT CLIMATE/NEW MOBILITY EMERGENCY CHALLENGE: Cross-cutting issues, sources and strategies

 * * THIS IS A ROUGH FIRST DRAFT. REQUIRES TOTAL REWRITE   * *

2019 Climate/New Mobility Emergency Action Plan & Demonstration

If we knew what it was we were doing, it would not be called research, would it? (Attributed to Albert Einstein)

The sources,  references and links that follow here – we think of them as building blocks – are presented here in first working draft form and are intended to serve to inform and guide  students, researchers, concerned citizens and others who are interested in getting up to speed on the wide range of challenging topics that need to be brought in to the analysis and eventual work plan for reducing greenhouse gas emissions from the local transport sector by a radical target and in a single year . These references include a considerable variety of issues, hints and developments (examples, free public transport, economic levers, value capture, full gender parity, etc., etc.) which have important roles to play in this wholesale reconstruction of the new mobility ecosystem.

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IS WORLD STREETS DOING ITS JOB? (We asked one hundred of our readers for their views.)

And one hundred and one responded:

Some WS readers - 2

Some World Streets readers

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PENANG TRANSPORT MASTER PLAN WATCHING BRIEF (Nov. 2018 Update)

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– Eric Britton, Paris. Update of 31 October 2018

Why a Watching Brief for Penang?

On 23 November 2013 I submitted the final report and recommendations to close out the first stage of my planned work as an invited adviser and critic of Penang’s transportation strategy, plans and procedures.  (See the Mission statement at  https://sustainablepenang.wordpress.com/the-mission/ ) The report was intended as a working draft for wide distribution  and vigorous critical discussion in the following months. It was entitled:

“SUSTAINABLE PENANG: TOWARD A NEW MOBILITY AGENDA”      

    Phase 1 Report, Brainstorming  and Policy Recommendations 

You can access the full advisory report here –  http://bit.ly/2IqZ0PO

HOLD IT!  Expected next stage not engaged. What happened?

When the report and its recommendations were apparently set aside and entirely ignored — as had been the fate of the  excellent, highly professional reports and recommendations of the Halcrow Transport Group — I decided not to let it ride and instead of turning my back on this highly dangerous “Master Plan” project chose to set up a public “Watching Brief on Sustainable Transport in Penang” . The objective of the brief is to follow and report to a wide international audience on the continuing see-saw battle between an obstinate under-qualified state government consortium and powerful lobby with a closed-door multi-billion dollar “Big Bang” (their words) program of massive infrastructure expansion, almost all parts of which would in good time succeed only in making what is already a bad situation (mainly nothing more fearful than a plain-vanilla peak hour congestion problem) significantly worse.

After noting the resounding silence in Penang as far as my analysis and recommendations were concerned, my option was to cash the client’s check, do nothing and forget Penang.  Or perhaps to set up something along the lines of an independent . .  .

Watching Brief on Penang’s evolving transport situation and disputes

The goal of this internet platform and associated social media sites then  is to support legitimate sustainable transport initiatives, critical thinking, open discussions, new ideas, consistent policy, fruitful alliances and fact-oriented discussion and anything else that might help advance the public’s understanding of the New Mobility Agenda in Penang.  The watching brief also keeps a careful eye open to identify, feed and encourage public discussion of what are almost surely in this case poor science, bad ideas, absurd proposals and  ad hoc initiatives which violate the basic precepts of the sustainability agenda.

A watching brief is a continuous, independent, and in this case open collaborative monitoring activity of progress and problems taking place in a specific sector or area. It takes a arms-length vision of the focus area and in this case is made broadly available to the public and all involved as a tool in support of Civil Society in Penang.

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Op-Ed: Handling Uncertainty in Mobility Planning and Decision Making

TRAFFUC LIGHT TREE - LARGE

Report of a roundtable discussion held in London on 20 July 2018.

– by Glenn Lyons.  Full report available from: http://eprints.uwe.ac.uk/37926

Abstract

In the 1700s, the French philosopher Voltaire reportedly said “Uncertainty is an uncomfortable position. But certainty is an absurd one.” The transport sector is becoming increasingly alive to how uncertain the future is. There is significant (or ‘deep’) uncertainty about the extent to which existing trends, relationships, technologies, economic and social forces, preferences and constraints will carry into the future. Uncomfortable though it may be, there is a need in our transport planning and decision making to avoid absurdity and address this. This report reflects the insights gained from a roundtable workshop in London convened to discuss the matter.

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EUROPEAN MOBILITY WEEK: 2018 MANUAL AND USER HANDBOOK

CLIMATE IS THE ULTIMATUM BEFORE OUR GENERATION

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2018 EUROPEAN MOBILITY WEEK MANUAL:

          Including thematic guidelines, handbook for local campaigners, and Car Free Day organizer benchmarks

Introduction

This Manual contains all the necessary information for towns and cities planning to organise  EUROPEAN MOBILITY WEEK from 16-22 September 2018.  It includes:
• the Thematic Guidelines for an explanation of the 2018 theme: ‘Multimodality’
• the Handbook for local campaigners presenting the requirements for taking part in this
European initiative.

The Manual starts with background information about the campaign. It also includes a list of useful links at the end of the document, and an extensive se of cautions and guidliens for the organizing of Car Free Days in your city.

The aim of this publication is to inspire local campaigners to organise attractive campaign activities, to implement relevant permanent measures and to celebrate Car-Free Day. There is also a chapter on how to apply for the EUROPEAN MOBILITY WEEK Awards. Towns and cities are free to adapt these guidelines to the local context. The information included here is not exhaustive; new ideas are always welcome to complement this Manual.

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Penang Op-Ed. Why bulldoze through Penang undersea tunnel project?

 

This is the fourth article in a series to explain why the Penang state government should get an independent review of the Penang Transport Master Plan (PTMP). Ahmad Hilmy & Lim Mah Hui  |  Published: 6 Aug 2018. https://www.malaysiakini.co

ANALYSIS | Why does Penang need to rush to have the 7.2km undersea tunnel project when the original Penang Transport Master Plan (PTMP) officially adopted by the state government clearly states that it is not an urgent priority?

Why this haste when the survey of Penang’s traffic volume by UK-based engineering consultant Halcrow showed that cross-channel traffic in 2011 accounted for only 7 percent of total state traffic during peak hours?

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A Short History of Car Free Days (Weeks, Months, Cities): Origins, Timeline, Progress

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.”

INDIA GUARGON CAR FREE DAY BICYCLIST

Here is how the Car Free Days movement got started and has taken shape over the last quarter century (time flies).  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 2019 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

COSTS, BENEFITS AND HIATUS OF THE ORIGINAL PENANG TRANSPORT MASTER PLAN

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 penang@ecoplan.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.

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WHAT’S THIS? VÉLO’V! VÉLO’V?

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.

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52 BETTER, FASTER, CHEAPER MEASURES your city could start to do tomorrow morning to cut GHG emissions, reduce traffic accidents, save lives, strengthen the economy and improve mobility and quality of life for all.

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.)

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Africa Streets and MOBILIZE, Dar es Salaam, 26-28 June 2018

Subject: Help wanted to bring Africa Streets to Dar es Salaam for the 26-28 June 2018 ITDP MOBILIZE events

Dear Friends of sustainable transport, sustainable cities and sustainable lives, greetings,

Here is what I want to do for our common cause and that just may interest you.. It is a long shot, but after half a day of turning the ideas around in my mind I decided to give it a try and seek counsel on this from our 10k plus international readers..   Let’s have a look.

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Wikipedia: Wayback Machine on Free Public Transport (Benchmark as per 11 May 2007)

                           Waiting for free bus services in Hasselt, Belgium 

This 2007 Wikipedia entry has been extracted as is from the Internet Archive Wayback  Machine at  http://archive.org/web. It is intended to serve as a baseline assessment, relative to the current WP entry of this date, and later to a planned 2020 entry.

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Op-Ed: What/who keeps holding back New Mobility reform in your city in 2018?

WaFB SC speed car kids running cross

From the editor’s desk: If you get it, New Mobility policy reform is a no-brainer in 2018. However, while the New Mobility Agenda is a great starting place, it is not going to get the job somehow miraculously done just because it is the only game in town when it comes to sustainable transport. There is plenty of competition for your thin wallet,  all that space on the street, and  especially for that space between our ears. We have a few potential sticking points here that need to be overcome first.

Let’s have a quick look. After some years of talking with cities, and working and observing in many different circumstances, here is my personal shortlist of the barriers most frequently encountered in trying to get innovative transportation reform programs off the ground, including even in cities that really do badly need a major mobility overhaul.

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