Today marks the fifth anniversary edition of World Streets. Our first number appeared on 31 March 2009 with an opening message by the editor -- click here -- announcing the targets, intent and proposed method of this new collaborative media venture. On the same day we published our Mission Statement -- Say Goodbye to Old Mobility -- which you can read here. Today we would like to spend a few minutes with you to review the accomplishments and, yes!, the shortcomings and disappointments of these first five years. And then go on to look out to our hopes and intentions for the rest of this decade.--> Read on:
Monday, March 31, 2014
This is short report was submitted by the participants of the city of Amsterdam in the 20 February 2014 workshop in the Utrecht for the project Going Dutch: Carshare Strategies for Cities being carried out by the KpVV (think tank of the Dutch ministry of transport) in cooperation with EcoPlan. The latest draft report on that meeting and the recommendations of those present from a cross-section of Dutch cities and agencies is available in our project library at http://goo.gl/clWKnD. Your comment and suggestions are most welcome.
Thursday, March 27, 2014
Challenging year ahead. Here are the main program areas to which we intend to give attention over the course of the year ahead. All of these are complex system challenges and require patient attention and mental flexibility if we are to find the best way to proceed in each case. And in each case it is not enough to be right in terms of the basic principles -- it is every bit as important to be able to communicate them and to convince the public, government and other key actors that these ideas and approaches are worth getting behind. Nobody ever said that the move to sustainable transport and sustainable cities was going to be simple.
Wednesday, March 26, 2014
In transportation circles, most often in Europe and North America but not uniquely there, we often hear the term "behavior modification", which is usually brandished as something that somebody else has to learn to do and cope with. More often than not this matter of behavior modification crops up when it comes to considering how, when and where people drive cars. But we can also hear about it with reference to pedestrians, cyclists and other drivers and street denizens. And as we can see from the results, this matter of behavior and modification turns out to be quite a challenge. We are opening up the pages of World Streets and others of our projects and work to these discussions over the course of 2014.
- - - > Click here for more on behavior and choice from World Streets
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Friday, March 21, 2014
We keep reading and are repeatedly informed that for carsharing to work there must be good public transport, cycling and other mobility arrangements as indispensable complements. In other words, for carsharing to work you have to be not only in a city, but in a certain kind of city. This position has been an article of faith for many carshare observers for more than a decade, and while there is a certain logic to it, upon inspection it turns out there is a lot more to successful carsharing than that.
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Thursday, March 20, 2014
This is a simple fact! Free Public Transport (FPT) has no possible justification whatsoever unless your governing officials are willing to do something about adjusting the other half of the modal mix to bring down car ownership and use in the city strategically and as quickly as possible . . . SCR - Systematic Car Reductions.
The tools for achieving these necessary adjustments in the modal split are well known, experience-proven and widely used in cities of all sizes in many parts of the world. There is no possible justification that competent public authorities not be aware of these proven tools and policies. They include most notably:
Wednesday, March 19, 2014
Results of pilot project in the Netherlands
This paper describes a pilot project consisting of a substantial increase in the number of carshare vehicles in a neighborhood in Nijmegen, the Netherlands. The goal was to explore, first, the impact on the demand for carshare services and, second, the impact on the socio-economic composition of the new carshare members. The results show a substantial increase in the number of carshare members, but little proof for the diversification hypothesis. While households interested in carshare membership had a different socio-economic profile from existing carshare members, the households that eventually became carshare members more closely resembled the existing members.--> Read on:
World Streets welcomes discussion of fare free public transport because we believe that it is important to listen to alternative views from different organizations and countries in order to arrive at wise public policy. This contribution comes from one of the most active international groups pushing zero fair public transport, Planka.nu in Sweden.
Tuesday, March 18, 2014
World Streets and the New Mobility Agenda are strong and consistent supporters of bike sharing projects created in university settings, particularly when planned and implemented on the basis of collaboration with students and faculty. We have reported on the excellent bike sharing project at Taiwan National University, and today we are pleased to share with you information just in from the Bike Sharing Project at Makerere University in Kampala Uganda. Projects like this not only improve mobility and environment for all within the target area, but also serve to prepare future leaders.
Saturday, March 15, 2014
Sustainability is not a four letter word
(but maybe it should be)
The second annual Haiku Sustainability Slam is being organized by World Streets and its friends as an ecumenical pagan celebration to the coming Rite of Spring, in part inspired by the exhilarating French annual speak-out program The Springtime of Poets (Le printemps des poètes) opens this year on the 23rd of March. A few words of background to set the stage for what we hope will be your own valiant poeticizing efforts.
lend me your arms
fast as thunderbolts
for a pillow on my journey
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Friday, March 14, 2014
Carsharing changes our relationship with the cars we owned and loved and hated over much of the century just behind us. And one of the points we hear from proponents again and again is that carsharing offers substantial savings, because the cost of owning a car has become much higher than in the past. Surely the cost of car ownership in the 21st century -- and all that goes with it including direct and indirect costs, among them depreciation, insurance, petrol, maintenance, parking, etc., -- is no light burden. But how expensive is it really? In this article, carsharing expert Dave Brook digs into the numbers and reflects on the true cost of ownership for most car owners in the United States.
Thursday, March 13, 2014
Germany is among the world leaders when it comes to the development of carsharing, as the following figures and graphics clearly illustrate. One of the primary reasons for this success has been the existence of strong networks and relationships between the cities and carshare operators over the last decade and more. And in this process the Bundesverband CarSharing e.V. (bcs) -- the industry association of the traditional car sharing organisations in Germany -- has played an important role. Let us have a look at their summary information on the situation in 2014, as well as in the preceding 17 years which have shown steady development and strong growth.
Monday, March 10, 2014
World Streets: The Politics of Transport in Cities
Each week subscribers to World Streets - presently numbering 5,407 from 149 countries on all continents - received a single mailing in the form of a weekly digest which briefly resumes all of the activity of the preceding week. Below you will find a listing of the articles published over the period 3-10 March 2014, during which we were hard at work on a series of carsharing projects. In a world of information overload, this is a handy way to keep up on what is going on at the leading edge of the new Mobility Agenda..
- - > * Click here for your free subscription.
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Sunday, March 9, 2014
If you are interested in carsharing, if you understand that public policy has an important role to play . . . and if you read Dutch, then Van autobezit naar autogebruik (“From car ownership to car use”) on LinkedIn at http://goo.gl/VEPRMG is for you.
The project is being carried out under the leadership of the KpVV: (Kennisplatform Verkeer en Vervoer –Knowledge Platform for Mobility and Transport). The KpVV supports local and regional authorities in their efforts to develop and implement mobility and transport policy by providing practical know-how, developing reports and guidelines, arranging meetings, and setting up networks. For more: http://www.kpvv.nl
xCARS: NEW WAYS OF OWNING AND USING CARS IN 21ST CENTURY.
The 2014 work program focuses on carsharing, but not limited to this one new form of car use. Coverage of different main forms: Traditional, One-way, P2P and private. Carsharing by its various names and different forms is one of the fastest-growing new ways of getting around in cities and outlying areas for day-to-day travel. Over the last decade it has increasingly proven itself to be an effective mobility option, serving thousands of cities on all continents.
* Click here to go to archives covering period 2009 - 2014 *
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Saturday, March 8, 2014
Carsharing has a brilliant, in many ways surprising and certainly very different future -- a future which is already well in process. Carsharing is one of the fastest growing new mobility modes, with until now almost all services occurring in the high income countries. But it is by and large new, unfamiliar and does not fit well with the more traditional planning and policy structures at the level of the city. This is a problem. And addressing this problem is the goal of this cycle of reports and events in the year ahead.
Today is International Women's Day. And not only that, 2011 marked the one hundredth anniversary of this great and necessary idea. So what better occasion for World Streets to announce publicly, loudly and yet once again our firm belief that the most important single thing that our society, our nations and our cities could do to increase the fairness and the effectiveness of our transportation arrangements would be to make it a matter of the law that all decisions determining how taxpayer money is invested in the sector should be decided by councils that respect full gender parity. We invite you to join us in this challenge and make it one of the major themes of sustainable transport policy worldwide in the year immediately ahead.
Friday, March 7, 2014
More than three quarters of the municipalities in the Netherlands are currently served by carshare operators (as opposed to 11% in 2002). The following listing has been compiled with the help of several friends and colleagues in the Netherlands, helping us to identify all of the carshare operators currently offering "traditional", P2P or one-way services. This listing is part of the in-process "Going Dutch" project which got underway in December 2013 and has been introduced here on World Streets.
Wednesday, March 5, 2014
The following listing of organizations around the world that are "fighting for free public transport" has been compiled by the Swedish activist group Free Public Transport, whose aim is to provide a global forum for the free public transport movement. Their website among other things provides information about local organizations around the world fighting for free public transport, as well as cities which have already implemented it. For their latest listing, click to http://freepublictransports.com/organization/.
Monday, March 3, 2014
Before digging into the details, the important mechanics of carsharing, it is important for policy makers to ask these deeper questions if we are ever to be able to shift gears into sustainable transport, sustainable cities and sustainable lives.
This is an extremely important foundation question to which the short answer is: yes definitely. But let us dig deeper.
Wednesday, February 19, 2014
An informal shared library has been set up in support of this group project for the KpVV to serve collaborators and contributors – in the form of a Dropbox file which you can find at https://www.dropbox.com/home/Going%20Dutch
Monday, February 17, 2014
Some may argue this, be that as it may, but if you ask World Streets for our advice for a great place to go to start your research into and understanding of carsharing from its semiformal origins in the years immediately after the second world war up to today, we would say go right to the international bibliography which has been organized by our Canadian friends and outstanding carshare innovators Communauto.
- - > Click here to find your way.
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Saturday, February 15, 2014
Monday, February 10, 2014
Transport in Penang (and all around the world for that matter) relies on non-renewable sources of energy. Think 20 cars with one person in each vehicle, versus one bus with 20 passengers. The former creates traffic jams and worsens pollution to detract from the overall liveability of a city. It is often argued that supplying more roads only creates more demand for their usage. With 10,000 more vehicles added to Penang’s roads each month , we will have to commit ourselves soon to a decision to enhance sustainable transport.
Think City Bhd invited Prof Eric Britton, managing director of EcoPlan International in Paris, founder of World Car Free Days and longtime advocate of sustainable transport initiatives, to Penang with the purpose of studying the transport system, meeting stakeholders and hosting a series of events to come up with ideas and a new perspective for transportation improvements across the state. Thus, Sustainable Penang: Towards a New Mobility was arranged as a two-week itinerary that featured 11 focus group discussions, three master classes, a lecture, a symposium and dialogues with MPPP, MPSP and the Penang Transport Council.
Monday, February 3, 2014
The topic of "free public transport" (FPT), or better yet "zero fair public transport" (ZFPT), is one that has gotten considerable attention here in World Streets over the last several years, on the grounds that it is an extremely rich concept which is worthy of careful attention. If at first humanistic and caring glance it appears to be a great and just concept, the fact is that like much of life it is more than a little complicated. Let us have a look at a recent article which first appeared in the pages of our sister publication Citiscope, which we reproduce here with their and the author's permission. ZFPT in Tallinn, an insider's view
Friday, January 31, 2014
This issue of World Transport Policy and Practice opens the journal's 20th year of consistent commitment to sustainable transport, which embraces the urgent need to cut global emissions of carbon dioxide, to 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 economic objectives than on the environment and social justice.
The lead editorial by founding editor John Whitelegg reports on the wrong-headed intensification of the mobility paradigm which is now firmly locked into a very strong, highly destructive infrastructure fetish. Articles by Jeff Kenworthy (Australia) , Nguyen Thi Cat Tuong (Vietnam), John Baptist Gauci (Malta), and the team of Mary Surridge, Cathy Green, Dynes Kaluba and Victor Simfukwe (Zambia) complete this latest edition of the Journal.
Wednesday, January 29, 2014
Monday, January 27, 2014
The short off the cuff answer is: yes definitely. But let us dig deeper.
The answer becomes even more self-evident if you turn the question around and ask: does an automobile-lifestyle promote balanced and sustainable economic growth. We all know the answer to that one.
A well thought-out carsharing policy -- which incidentally is not really possible unless you first have a well thought out overall mobility strategy – – will make a contribution to promoting balanced and sustainable economic growth. How is that?
Sunday, January 19, 2014
Enrique Peñalosa, former mayor of Bogotá, was responsible for introducing a number of in terms of transportation and public space innovations. In this short video he talks here about buses versus cars (really people v. cars) and the experience of Bogotá in giving clear preference to buses with their now world-famous Transmilenio (BRT) mass transit system. As mayor he also introduced a number of innovations including land-use, parks and public space projects as well as Bogotá's Bike Paths Network. If you listen to his talk you will see the very large number of issues and themes which relates to the situation in Penang today. Let's see what we can learn from Bogotá.
Saturday, January 18, 2014
The 2014 objective is to identify, prepare and implement specific reforms and projects that can be brought online and already start to show results in the year ahead. (Time horizon as selected by State Government for near-term measures and reforms set out in Transport Master Plan Strategy.)
The key implementing agencies will be the State Government and the two Municipal Councils – MPPP and MPSP -- coordinating with the Penang Transport Council. The project is accompanied by Think City and supported by the International Advisory Network of EcoPlan International and World Streets. The key lies in the active engagement of Civil Society Partners in Penang (NGOs, universities, researchers and consultants, media, bloggers, local associations, concerned citizens).
- - > See full Executive Summary at http://penang1xs.ecoplan.org
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Wednesday, January 15, 2014
The following article appeared Malaysiakini, the most read independent news website offering daily news and views in English, Malay, Chinese and Tamil. Reproduced here in its entirety, it is can be consulted directly from the source at http://beta.malaysiakini.com/news/251763. The reader may find some interest in the diversity of views expressed in the Comments which also are reproduced here.
Tuesday, January 14, 2014
In the context of the Sustainable Penang/New Mobility 2014 program, the key to the success of the project lies in the identification and eventual preparation and implementation of specific, practical, relatively low cost concepts and measures which give more importance to non-motorized transport and public transportation than to the traditional uses of the private car. One of the ideas that came up early in the Focus Group brainstorming sessions was that of providing voice announcements for the blind and others with visual impairments on the new Rapid Penang bus services being developed across the state. In the following excellent article prepared by the local NGO Saint Nicolas Home we see how thoroughly they are looking at the problems of mobility and access for the visually impaired. Thus it is not surprising that Saint Nicolas Home is emerging as one of the most engaged champions of this collaborative project for 2014. (We shall be seeing more about that project shortly here.)
Friday, January 10, 2014
Click here for the latest version of the Phase 1 summary report which is intended at this point for information and comment by collaborators and others who have indicated their interest in following the Penang New Mobility project. The summary quickly reviews the initial organization and plan for the project, and progress in the second half of 2013. It also sets out the basis of the planned 2014 implementation stage.
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