Celebrating Bandung’s Car Free Day. Known as “We shot Bandung” Credit: Ikhlasyl Amal.
At a terrible time in the history of mankind, I propose to you this photograph as a message of hope and a silent clue to a better, sweeter future for all. . . agreeing as I do with the poet Louis Aragon when he wrote so long ago: “La femme est l’avenir de l’homme” (“Woman is the Future of Mankind”).
What about this? Let’s get together, you and, I to see what we can do about making this the universal theme of World Car Free Day this year . . . in as many cities and countries around the world as we can. One city at a time.
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Bio: Trained as a development economist, Eric Britton is MD of EcoPlan International, an independent advisory network providing strategic counsel for government and business on policy and decision issues involving complex systems, social-technical change and sustainable development. His work focuses on the target of equity, economy and efficiency in city transport, and helping governments to ask the right questions and from this starting point to find and implement practical solutions to climate, mobility, public space and job creation challenges. He is currently working with an expert group of international colleagues on a book for publication in mid 2015, “Toward a General Theory of Sustainable Transport in Cities” which is being presented, discussed and critiqued in a series of journal articles, university sessions, international conferences, workshops, media events and city dialogues over 2014.(For additional background click to http://wp.me/PsKUY-2p7)
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In this ten minute video Professor Tiwari takes a useful step back from the usual pure transport and all too often dominant technology/infrastructure perspective, taking us back for starters to the fundamentals of what is going on at the level of city dynamics and the daily lives of the vast. of the neglected great majority of all who live and need to get around in the cities in her great and sprawling country. She comes down hard on past policies that have heavily favored the well to do, while all too systematically ignoring the daily needs of the rest. And that of course is unsustainable. Let’s listen to what she has to say:
Awaiting the necessary gathering of forces that will make India Streets a useful free-standing addition to the still far too spare sustainable transport tool kit of the Subcontinent, and since a growing number of people check in here regularly for news and views, perspective and inspiration, we are occasionally reprinting particularly thought-provoking articles from the Indian media which we feel can only benefit from a larger readership. This article on mindless car glut in Chandigarh just in from The Times of India yesterday (thanks to Vinay Baindur for the good heads-up). Continue reading
At a time when the Delhi Government, politicos, media and the middle-class is raving about Metro Rail as a panacea to all traffic woes in Delhi (traffic congestion included), an objective assessment of its performance and appropriateness is highly warranted.
Built at a cost that could provide free bus-based public transport and high quality non-motorized transport facilities for years, or feed millions of destitute malnourished Indian citizens, the Delhi Metro, now in operations since 2002, seems to not be living up to its promise. Ravi Gadepalli brings us a unique insight in to the planning and workings of the Delhi Metro. How’s it fared? Let us read to know.
To open up 2011 please find here the first in a planned new series of occasional India Streets Dispatches, to be taken from multiple sources with the goal of giving wider circulation within India and beyond to articles, emails and other outstanding contributions covering from different perspectives what the editors of I/S believe to be important matters concerning India’s streets and well-being which are worthy of both wider circulation and preservation. Continue reading
We do not normally carry media releases on projects, programs, reports or books, but today we make an exception and are gladly posting the following important announcement. We share this both here and on the Sustran Global South forum for comment and discussion. It is our firm intention to keep an eye on this and our firm hope that the money spent and technical resources brought to the job will result above all in multiplying the number of many and diverse on-street examples of how sustainable mobility works in the interest of the entire population — and not just the privileged (automotive and relatively affluent) few. As William Blake put it roughly two centuries ago: “He who would do good to another must do it in minute particulars.” India Streets pledges keep as eye on the minute particulars. Continue reading
Loved by the people for their extreme utility, abhorred by the state as a symbol of backwardness, cycle rickshaws – or pedicabs – are not a new phenomenon in India. Originally from Japan, the hand-drawn rickshaw was introduced in Simla in India around 1880. It was, then, a vehicle to carry the social elite. By 1950, cycle rickshaws evolved into a popular mode of urban transport. Today, cycle rickshaws provide door-to-door transport at an affordable price to people in urban areas across India. Cycle rickshaws also provide easy employment to those wanting employment. At a time when economic opportunity in the hinterland is dwindling, many village folk come to the city and earn a living by pulling cycle rickshaws. Continue reading
We need to be quite frank about this. India Streets is not, even if it may at times appear to be the case, an anti-car journal. To the contrary! There are many reasons for this, one of them being the sheer good sense of understanding that it’s going to be kind of hard to get rid of something like one billion of them with a simple swing of righteous rhetoric. And not to forget that cars really do play a powerful and useful role under many circumstances in the daily lives of many honest hard-working people. But the other side of this good sense coin is awareness that our very high and even cascading level of car dependence and profligate use are major challenges to quality of life, health and sound economics that need to be faced squarely and soon. Let’s see what our friend and colleague “Mr. Meter”, Lee Schipper of the Global Metropolitan Studies at the University of California at Berkeley, has to say on the subject of car-madness in Asia.