Worst Practices you really do not need to repeat in your city.

Awareness of the environmental, economic, equity and efficiency limitations of the old car-dominated transportation paradigm traces back to the early 1970s and has been extensively documented in the international literature.  But the old ideas, the old almost auto-pilot notions as to what works and what doesn’t die hard.  It is thus necessary that from the perspective of planning and public policy that we keep a sharp eye on all of these old bad habits, from the beginning of the investigatory, preparatory, analytic and planning process.

With this in view here is a first shortlist of well-known transport-related traps which your city really does not need to fall into.  If your strategic transport plan and actual performance, respect the first handful of these criteria.  You can be confident that you’re well on the right path.

Continue reading

Welcome to World Streets Worst Practices Department

man sleeping under sidewalk - top half only

Since our founding in 2009 World Streets has given attention occasionally to poor, and at times desperately poor, policies and practices in the fields of cities and transportation, in what we call our Worst Practices Department. The WPD has its useful place in World Streets and the world more generally because when it comes to transportation there has never been a shortage of bad ideas and even worse implementations.

Most of the bad ideas you will see skewered in this section are the results of some variable combinations of hubris, avarice, haste, short-sightedness, self-interest, pure ego, and invariably sheer ignorance of the complexity of the 21st century mobility environment.  And of course all too often of sheer unbridled  stupidity. (And so it goes.)

“Not by wrath, but by laughter, do we slay.”

Continue reading

SKY CAB BLUES IN PENANG

penang skycab - reversed
* See article in today’s The Star Online at Source: http://goo.gl/JmlZ1D

There are two things that are badly wrong with this proposal.

The first, and by far the easiest to deal with, is that it is a silly, amateurish and quite inappropriate mobility project, a waste of taxpayer money, unacceptably ad hoc and a waste of valuable time (in that it distracts attention and resources from the real challenges). Every international transportation professional with a serious education in the field has known that for the last two decades– other of course than those who just love this kind of technology and/or are in the hire of the eventual suppliers. So off it goes.

Continue reading

“Worst Practices”: Regulations that prohibit shared taxis anywhere on the planet

“Regulations that prohibit shared taxis are an example of worst practice.” – Ann Hackett

In eleven short words Ann Hackett has put her finger on one of the most egregious “Worst Practices” in our field. And, as it happens, one that we know enough about to easily resolve.

USA NYC Taxi lady hailing source - thedailybeast

 

Continue reading

Whoops! How Planners and Engineers Badly Overestimate Car Traffic

From Streetsblog Daily, 12 Dec 2014 06:56 AM PST

Streetsblog - Trip generation manualHow much car traffic will a new building generate? Engineers and planners are constantly trying to divine the answer to this question in the belief that it will tell them the “right” number of parking spaces to build, or how to adjust streets to accommodate more cars.

This is the bible for planning infrastructure around new developments. Is it wildly wrong? Image: Access Magazine)

The standard reference to guide these decisions is the Trip Generation Manual published by the Institute for Transportation Engineers. But the manual has come under fire for overestimating the traffic produced by mixed-use developments. A team of transportation engineers aligned with the Congress for the New Urbanism has been working on a fix for that.

Continue reading