The L.A.-Waze partnership is, at least in theory, an initial step toward allowing the city’s planners and engineers to regain a healthier role in mediating the kinds of longstanding cross-town conflicts that Waze has renewed and amplified. Whether the deal will help to resolve fundamental long-term issues related to the city’s growth and inadequate infrastructure is another matter. — newyorker.com
The Federal Highway Administration has very quietly acknowledged that the driving boom is over. [...]
the agency’s more recent forecast finally recognizes that the protracted post-World War II era has given way to a different paradigm.
The new vision of the future suggests that driving per capita will essentially remain flat in the future. The benchmark is important because excessively high estimates of future driving volume get used to justify wasteful spending on new and wider highways. — usa.streetsblog.org
You can’t build your way out of congestion. It’s the roads themselves that cause traffic. The concept is called induced demand, which is economist-speak for when increasing the supply of something (like roads) makes people want that thing even more. [...]
What [economists] Turner and Duranton (and many others who’d like to see more rational transportation policy) actually advocate is known as congestion pricing. This means raising the price of driving on a road when demand is high. — wired.com
New bike lanes certainly make life better for cyclists, but how do they affect drivers? This question is hotly debated, especially when a new bike lane replaces a lane used by vehicular traffic. It seems that unless a ton of people start commuting by bicycle, giving away a lane would cause increased car traffic. But is this really the case? — fivethirtyeight.com
Great cities don’t rest on the laurels of their great public spaces. They make them greater. That’s what Chicago is doing here, despite the objections of naysayers who argued during the recession that the project was an unnecessary and unaffordable extravagance.
But recessions come and go. We only cheat ourselves if we use downturns as an excuse to lower our sights and not build a better future. Now the future and better times are here. — chicagotribune.com
So it is that nearly a third of the interstate system consists of stretches through our cities, in the form of loops, spurs and freeways. So it is that American motorists drive nearly twice as many miles on urban interstates as they do the lengthier rural legs. So it is that every metropolis in the country has reorganized itself around these roads, and that they've shaped where we live and work, how we shop, what we eat, and how we pass our time. — theatlanticcities.com
Given current growth trends, the world's population is expected to reach 9 billion people by midcentury. That also means a quadrupling in the number of cars to 4 billion by 2050 -- and that, said Ford, is a recipe for global gridlock that he argues will become "a human rights issue, not just an inconvenience."
For Ford [...] the only answer is to create a future where pedestrians, bicycles, and cars become part of a connected network. — CNET
Yu is a soft-spoken engineer with great power: He sets the timing for all of L.A.’s stoplights. His department has to take it all in: bikes, trains, big events and, of course, lots and lots of cars. Los Angeles has one of the nation’s worst reputations for automobile congestion, but that’s a simplistic way of looking at things. Its freeways are still the most congested in the nation, but L.A. has 36 times as many miles of surface streets as it does freeways. — forbes.com
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