World Car Free Day 2014: “La femme est l’avenir de l’homme”

cropped-indnesia-bandugn-gils-cross-walki.jpg

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.

Your turn!

# # #

The author
9, rue Gabillot, 69003 Lyon France

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)

View complete profile

 

 

Delhi rape and Problem solving in India – eye opener.

Chetan Prasad comments:  Problem solving in India is very complex since several issues are interconnected. It’s like opening a Pandora’s Box. During this very incident I monitored several TV channels and news papers to understand the issue and what I found is here. Continue reading

Quality of Life in Urban Mobility- Policy Neglect of the Needs for Pedestrians

india-feet-bit-larger Tarun Sharma reports from New Delhi about safe walking  and quality of life in cities, with the help of two concepts of hierarchies. One is Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, and the other is the food chain. He looks at these two concepts not so much on scientific as  intuitive grounds. And he offers it not to solve a policy problem, but to state the obvious in an obvious way. His focus is on one of the aspects of city living, namely mobility. Continue reading

Charina Cabrido reports on SAFA Tempos (Electric three-wheelers) in Nepal

SAFA tempos or Nepali’s version of electric three wheelers are typically seen in Kathmandu’s busy streets. Running at an average speed of 60 kilometer per hour, safa tempos serve at least 127 thousand people everyday transporting individuals to their destinations.  This is quite a challenge for a country that has been constantly confronted with power cuts that reach sixteen hours a day especially during winter season. Continue reading

La femme est l’avenir de l’homme

* Click to enlarge

The French poet Louis Aragon told us some two generations ago that “Woman is the future of man”. And if we had any doubts about that as we enter into 2012, we have today before our eyes this exceptional, moving photograph of a street demonstration yesterday in which several thousand brave women marched through central Cairo in an extraordinary expression of anger over images of soldiers beating, stripping and kicking female demonstrators in Tahrir Square. Continue reading

Letter from Kathmandu: Promoting walking as sustainable transport in cities

Does anyone notice anything a bit strange in these two photos of traffic in Kathmandu Nepal on any typical day. To the left we have boiling Asia-style traffic propelling speeding high carbon males. While to the right we see a woman and a girl making their way as best they can by foot. Hmm. Continue reading

Towards Carfree Cities X: What happened in Guadalajara from 3 to 10 September 2011?

From the Editor’s Desk:
This year’s World Carfree Network Conference was organized by the dynamic and fast growing city of Guadalajara, under the title Towards Carfree Cities (Hacia ciudades libres de autos), and with the support and management of two local activist groups, Ciudad Para Todos and GDL en Bici. I was invited to provide the opening keynote address on the topic of “Better Cities with a Lot Fewer Cars”, to kick off a weeklong festival of events, discussions, and presentations in the context of their program. My chosen themes were (a) deep democracy and (b) the need for immediate action. I was wonderfully received and learned a lot during my busy week with them. Continue reading

Walkability Assessment in 13 Asian Cities

The poor state of pedestrian facilities in some Asian cities was highlighted in the report published by the Asian Development Bank and the Clean Air Initiative for Asian Cities. Ironically, the lowest walkability ratings are found to be along public transport terminals and schools where footpaths, pedestrian amenities and access for persons-with-disabilities are sorely lacking. Continue reading

Family Mouse moves ahead on fifty language worldwide odyssey

Family Mouse moves ahead on fifty language worldwide Odyessy Today we want to tell you about a bit more concerning progress on a collaborative international project on a children’s book exactly on our subject. Back in mid March, we announced our intention to produce a 2011  edition of this successful  children’s book, but this time in (our target) fifty language editions. Read on to see where things stand today. All the more  if any of you out there might be interested in lending a hand so that we can crea … Read More

via World Streets: The New Mobility Agenda

What percent of your city’s street space is allocated to non-car uses (via World Streets)

What percent of your city's street space  is allocated to non-car uses The pie chart you will find just below  graphically illustrates the state of street space allocation today in New York City, after four years of hard work on a committed local effort by city government and many associations to free street space for pedestrians, bikes and buses. All that for less than one half of one percent of the public space given over to cars. So here is our question this morning: Do things look any better in your city in 2011? We invite your reports and comments. … Read More

via World Streets

What can we learn from the murderous attack on cyclists in Porto Alegre Brazil on Friday?

What can we learn from the murderous attack on cyclists in Porto Alegre on Friday? Porto Alegre Brazil. 25 February 2011. At least forty people were injured when a mad driver slammed his car into a pack of more than 100 cyclists in the city of Porto Alegre in Brazil. The cyclists, mainly young people, were staging a peaceful demonstration calling for a reduction in the number of cars on the streets. The 47-year-old male driver fled the scene of the incident Friday evening and was later arrested after authorities found his his abandoned car over the weekend.

Read More
via World Streets (A world changing before our eyes)

International Conference on Mobility and Transport for Elderly and Disabled Persons

Svayam, an initiative of S.J.Charitable Trust, India is proud to announce that the 13th International Conference on Mobility and Transport for Elderly and Disabled Persons (TRANSED 2012) will take place in India from September 17-21, 2012. The theme of the conference is “Seamless access for all: Universal Design in Transport system and built infrastructure, a key element in the creation of livable cities.”
Continue reading

Rough trade on the streets of Bogota, much like here

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

The benefits of being Obama

This article published today by associate editor of India Streets, Karthik Rao-Cavale, in his outstanding blog “India lives in her cities too!”, provides a bald example of the kind of  clear thinking and truth-telling that is indispensable to make informed policy decisions in the face of abundant complexities and contradictions that constitute day-to-day life on India’s streets. Would it not be a wonderful thing if President Obama were to be invited to walk the streets and see for himself this aspect of daily life in one of the world’s greatest cities? I am sure that he would understand it entirely and be moved to a far greater degree than sitting down to one more boring and inevitably hypocritical rubber-chicken State Dinner. And he would go back to his crushing work load in Washington a far better friend of India. I can promise you that.  – Eric Britton. Editor, India Streets.

The latest news from Mumbai is that President Obama is about to visit, and all the routes he might possibly take are being beautified. Some of them are even being adorned with date palm trees, despite these trees being completely inappropriate for Mumbai’s humid climate. And alongside, anti-encroachment drives are being carried out to evict “illegal” hawkers squatting on the pavements. This prompted one KRP Gupta to ask why it is that while Obama … Read More

via India lives in her cities too!

Sweet Victory

New World Bank Report.  Challenges to Inclusive Bus Rapid Transit

[From TheCityFix] The World Bank recently published a report, “Technical and Operational Challenges to Inclusive Bus Rapid Transit,” compiled by Tom Rickert, a consultant with extensive experience on accessible transportation. While the technical report is intended primarily for an audience of BRT system and service planners, its release marks a recognition of the practical challenges in making public transport in the developing world fully accessible.

Continue reading

Parks vs. Parking: What do Indian cities need?

Parks vs. Parking: What do Indian cities need? Chennai had prepared a plan some years ago for a multi-storey parking deck  in T. Nagar where the Panagal Park now stands. T Nagar, once a quiet residential neighbourhood, is now the shopping centre for all of Chennai and has tremendous levels of congestion. The parking plan was called off due to protests by walkers and elderly … Read More

via India lives in her cities too!

Kaohsiung 2010 Papers: Are streets meant for travel alone?

Kaohsiung 2010 Papers:  Are streets meant for travel alone? This essay contests the idea that streets are for travel alone by critically examining the logic and language employed by the elite to delegitimize two marginalized groups using streets for non-travel purposes: hawkers and pavement-dwellers. Further, court cases interpreting constitutional guarantees in the context of hawkers and pavement-dwellers are examined. Based on these discussions, an attempt is made to provide an alternative framework for … Read More

via World Streets