The trend of cities banning cars

General Discussion about electric vehicles.
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The trend of cities banning cars

Post by Punx0r » Oct 27 2018 4:35pm

The main aim seem to be to reduce air pollution from ICE vehicles (vehicle bans are the new smoking bans), but another aim is to give more space to pedestrians and cyclists to make human-powered transport along with public-transport the default choice.

https://www.businessinsider.com/cities- ... 017-8?IR=T

It's a fundamental reimagining of urban centres, which for so long have been dominated by cars that it's hard to imagine doing without them.

Unfortunately for Chalo, the U.S. will probably be the most country most resistant to such a cultural shift, and even then Texas will probably hold out the longest :lol:

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Re: The trend of cities banning cars

Post by classicalgas » Oct 28 2018 11:19am

*It's a fundamental reimagining of urban centres, which for so long have been dominated by cars that it's hard to imagine doing without them. *...Not difficult at all, it's been less than a hundred years since US cities were "dominated" by horses and bicycles (with some mass transit thrown in) We have films of those cities. In most of the rest of the world, it's been less than a lifetime, in some places peds and bikes are currently 90% of urban traffic volume.

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Re: The trend of cities banning cars

Post by neptronix » Oct 28 2018 1:32pm

It's a big step backwards for areas with inclement weather to not allow cars.

If they allow velomobiles in these areas, that'd be a big plus for getting around when it's raining / scorching / freezing / dusting.

Image

Image

You cannot get around in one of these in a city that allows cars. The road speed is too high and these will not be seen by larger trucks and such. If these are allowed, then 'car free' would actually be pretty awesome because these vehicles will mix with horses and scooters and bikes just fine.
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Re: The trend of cities banning cars

Post by billvon » Oct 28 2018 3:20pm

Punx0r wrote:
Oct 27 2018 4:35pm
The main aim seem to be to reduce air pollution from ICE vehicles (vehicle bans are the new smoking bans), but another aim is to give more space to pedestrians and cyclists to make human-powered transport along with public-transport the default choice.
While the idea of giving more space to pedestrians and cyclists is great, I am against wholesale bans. Partition the city into lanes for cars and trucks, lanes for bikes and lanes for pedestrians. That way everyone is supported (and the city can continue to exist.)
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Re: The trend of cities banning cars

Post by Hillhater » Oct 28 2018 4:57pm

Cities should have mass public transport systems as a primary means of people movement, with bicycles (ebikes ?) as a "last mile" solution.
"Personal" transport will become an impossible luxury, forced out by costs and restrictions, as population density grows.
Subways, trains, trams, etc etc are potential options available now , and in the near future autonomous vehicles will add another dimention, as either "taxis" , or trains or busses.
Retro fitting trains and trams into existing city structures is difficult and expensive, ( reconstructing streets with steel rails etc), but using the latest GPS guidance systems China are now introducing autonomous , road tyred, trams (100-300 passengers) that can operate on existing roads with minimal infrastructure changes.
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Re: The trend of cities banning cars

Post by armandd » Oct 29 2018 3:38am

I like the idea. Cities in cooler climates such as New York, Paris or London should move towards reducing cars and other ICE vehicles, as soon as possible. However, riding a bicycle to work for more than 1 or 2km in hot climates such as Jakarta, Singapore or Kuala Lumpur is next to impossible. E-bikes might work, although you'll still need to take a shower at the workplace. :lol:

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Re: The trend of cities banning cars

Post by Punx0r » Oct 29 2018 3:44am

billvon wrote:
Oct 28 2018 3:20pm
While the idea of giving more space to pedestrians and cyclists is great, I am against wholesale bans. Partition the city into lanes for cars and trucks, lanes for bikes and lanes for pedestrians. That way everyone is supported (and the city can continue to exist.)
I think the problem with this is a) available space and b) effective segregation of the two types of transport

Most cities give over almost all their space to cars and are often gridlocked. Suddenly giving over a significant amount of space to peds/bikes (as would be required to encourage people to change usage patterns) would be chaos.

Effective segregation would be essential to give peds and bikes a safe space to travel freely in, but it's hard to imagine how lanes for different types of transport can go all places without crossing over. Any crossover points will give rise to conflict or traffic.

Banning the cars is also the only way to bring air pollution way down. Cars can be restricted to specific lanes but unfortunately their pollution cannot be so contained.

Pontevedra, in Spain, banned cars from it's inner city zone in 1999 and since then hasn't had a single traffic fatality, which is pretty good going considering cycling itself can still be dangerous.

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Re: The trend of cities banning cars

Post by billvon » Oct 29 2018 10:06am

Punx0r wrote:
Oct 29 2018 3:44am
Most cities give over almost all their space to cars and are often gridlocked. Suddenly giving over a significant amount of space to peds/bikes (as would be required to encourage people to change usage patterns) would be chaos.
Yes, it would be painful. But in cities that are already gridlocked, at least you are making the problem better (i.e. traffic still won't move, but more people would be able to get around.) In cities that aren't gridlocked, assigning space _now_ will prevent pain later.

This has worked in a lot of places already. Toronto, Denver, Boulder, Portland, Seattle, San Diego, Tucson and Madison have all put a lot of effort into putting in bike and pedestrian lanes in alongside (sometimes in place of) roads. Seems to work.

But in any case, you don't have to take space to give space. Elevated or underground bikeways (or roads) can free up street space and avoid problems at intersections. Removing parking and changing that to biking space - then relocating parking to parking garages - can help as well.
Banning the cars is also the only way to bring air pollution way down. Cars can be restricted to specific lanes but unfortunately their pollution cannot be so contained.
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Re: The trend of cities banning cars

Post by wturber » Oct 29 2018 12:30pm

Seems like the title is a bit overstated to me. With the exception of Oslo and Hamburg, all of those cities have population densities above 10,000/sq mi. Some much higher.

The reality is that some cities with high densities are restricting or banning cars in limited central portions of their cities. But I guess it's harder to make that into a catch subject title.

The higher the population density, the more practical it is to consider banning or limiting cars.
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Re: The trend of cities banning cars

Post by wturber » Oct 29 2018 12:35pm

armandd wrote:
Oct 29 2018 3:38am
I like the idea. Cities in cooler climates such as New York, Paris or London should move towards reducing cars and other ICE vehicles, as soon as possible. However, riding a bicycle to work for more than 1 or 2km in hot climates such as Jakarta, Singapore or Kuala Lumpur is next to impossible. E-bikes might work, although you'll still need to take a shower at the workplace. :lol:
That seems likely to be more the humidity than the temperature. And yes, ebikes would help substantially. Riding an ebike with no or moderate pedaling will actually cool you off more than just standing outside. You get more of a breeze to cool ya off. At least that has been my experience in the Scottsdale/Phoenix area. The only time ebiking is really tough is between noon and 6P in the hottest summer months. But even then, short trips at low effort aren't so bad.

As for showers, I find they aren't really necessary so long as you've showered the morning or night before. You do need a change of clothes and a place to wipe yourself down though. It really doesn't take much.
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Re: The trend of cities banning cars

Post by wturber » Oct 29 2018 12:52pm

billvon wrote:
Oct 29 2018 10:06am

But in any case, you don't have to take space to give space. Elevated or underground bikeways (or roads) can free up street space and avoid problems at intersections. Removing parking and changing that to biking space - then relocating parking to parking garages - can help as well.
Yes. Eliminating street parking in dense/congested areas seems to make a lot of sense to me and could make doubly good sense if the local population can be convinced to embrace more walking and biking/ebiking. Of course, one way to convince them is to make that the more favorable option.
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Re: The trend of cities banning cars

Post by Chalo » Oct 29 2018 1:29pm

armandd wrote:
Oct 29 2018 3:38am
I like the idea. Cities in cooler climates such as New York, Paris or London should move towards reducing cars and other ICE vehicles, as soon as possible. However, riding a bicycle to work for more than 1 or 2km in hot climates such as Jakarta, Singapore or Kuala Lumpur is next to impossible. E-bikes might work, although you'll still need to take a shower at the workplace. :lol:
Those places-- and New Orleans, Houston, Atlanta, etc.-- were functioning cities before air conditioning and before cars. Millions of people in those places walk to get around, which is hotter and sweatier than cycling. I'd say all we need to be rid of cars is an adjustment of expectations. And to put on our big boy pants. (And take off our wretched-man suits and ties.)

Austin is my hometown and I want to stay, but I'll relocate to the first real city in the USA that bans cars as soon as that happens. All we need is one, and the rest of the real cities will see the results and wonder why they have put up with such awfulness for so long.
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Re: The trend of cities banning cars

Post by neptronix » Oct 29 2018 2:13pm

wturber wrote:
Oct 29 2018 12:30pm
The higher the population density, the more practical it is to consider banning or limiting cars.
Right. It's a scaling problem. In most American cities, the space used for roadways and car parking exceeds the amount of space people actually live in.

Eventually something has to budge when you have towers upon towers of people living on top of each other. Every city street cannot be an 8 lane highway.
Chalo wrote:
Oct 29 2018 1:29pm
Austin is my hometown and I want to stay, but I'll relocate to the first real city in the USA that bans cars as soon as that happens. All we need is one, and the rest of the real cities will see the results and wonder why they have put up with such awfulness for so long.
There are various ecovillages in the united states which would fit the description. I've always wanted to live in one myself, but they are often overly expensive or located out of the way.

Building codes and zoning edicts often prevent these things from even being formed in the states. A preference for sprawl and waste is built into all our legal structures. Ecovillage pioneers are either at odds with the law and risk having things torn down, or are forced into building overly large, energy wasteful compliant solutions though.

I've been focusing on an early retirement plan so i can live out this dream long term in another country, because i don't see things changing here any time soon. Voting with your feet is the only way to go when there's this much resistance to sustainable development.
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Re: The trend of cities banning cars

Post by Chalo » Oct 29 2018 2:52pm

neptronix wrote:
Oct 29 2018 2:13pm
Chalo wrote:
Oct 29 2018 1:29pm
Austin is my hometown and I want to stay, but I'll relocate to the first real city in the USA that bans cars as soon as that happens. All we need is one, and the rest of the real cities will see the results and wonder why they have put up with such awfulness for so long.
There are various ecovillages in the united states which would fit the description. I've always wanted to live in one myself, but they are often overly expensive or located out of the way.
Hence my stipulation of a "real city". Any community than doesn't include its own economic base and the whole range of social classes isn't a city, but only a settlement. I'd go so far as to say that a city that doesn't command its own cultural identity wouldn't be worth it-- but that part definitely would not be a problem for a car-free city.
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Re: The trend of cities banning cars

Post by amberwolf » Oct 30 2018 12:07am

billvon wrote:
Oct 29 2018 10:06am
Elevated or underground bikeways (or roads) can free up street space and avoid problems at intersections.
Unfortunately it also makes it much harder for those using bikes for everyday commuting, shopping, etc., because they have to travel farther out of the way to do anything, or else just stay on the roads with cars (which would then have no bike lanes/etc., because those would be elsewhere).

I dunno about most places, but around here they'd probably build that stuff with exits only every mile (or less often). They'd also probably only build it wide enough for narrow-handlebar bikes to just barely pass each other, or even for just one bike width. And most likely they would combine the pedestrian and cycleway together, so cycles could not actually use it due to pedestrians clogging it in groups that won't let cycles pass, or cycles having to nearly stop to pass the pedestrians without risk of collision.

Any of those would be problem enough to keep me from using it.

I ride everywhere, no car needed. But if I can't just ride along and turn into driveways as needed, and instead have to go past my destination in some enclosed/overhead/etc. lane, then come back in traffic, or get off the overhead/etc early and then ride along in traffic till I get to my destination, I might as well just stay in the traffic. It'd be safer, and take less time and distance.


A better solution than segregating the traffic is teaching drivers, cyclists, and pedestrians to pay attention, lowering large vehicle speeds at least a bit, and changing the attitudes of people in general to be courteous to others instead of selfishly acting as if the entire road and world were all about them, disregarding anyone else on the road and driving how and where they feel like.

Removing parking and changing that to biking space - then relocating parking to parking garages - can help as well.
THAT would be very helpful, because drivers of cars, trucks, etc., park wherever they feel like (including no parking areas, and bike lanes). Residential areas are worse about this than business areas, but mostly because there aren't usually bike lanes or no parking areas around the businesses--if they had them, they'd be ignored just like they are in residential.



I'm not sure if bans are the right way to change transportation modes, but I can see there could be places where people will not change (when there is no specific need for individual cars, and many reasons to eliminate a significant amount of them), there might be a need to make some sort of forced change.



Right now, here in my area of Phoenix, especially around business / shopping centers, Uber and Lyft and the like have significantly increased individual car traffic and illegal/unsafe roadside parking, because now people who had no car and walked or rode now ride in those, and the U&L/etc drivers then hang around or drive around areas that tend to get more calls.

We used to have a few taxis that did this sort of thing, but not nearly as many as the U&L/etc cars--and most of the taxis would stop and park in a parking lot when not carrying passengers, and were generally safer drivers than most of the U&L/etc drivers seem to be.

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Re: The trend of cities banning cars

Post by Chalo » Oct 30 2018 1:24am

amberwolf wrote:
Oct 30 2018 12:07am
I dunno about most places, but around here they'd probably build that stuff with exits only every mile (or less often). They'd also probably only build it wide enough for narrow-handlebar bikes to just barely pass each other, or even for just one bike width. And most likely they would combine the pedestrian and cycleway together, so cycles could not actually use it due to pedestrians clogging it in groups that won't let cycles pass,
Where I live, any bike/ped underpasses would probably be designed big enough to admit emergency vehicles or cop cars, and they'd become de facto shelter for homeless people.

Resolving right-of-way conflicts isn't the main problem, anyway. That can be sorted out by decree. The noise, hazard, pollution, and space-hogging that come along with cars all ruin the city for human habitation. It doesn't matter so much that you can cross a street without getting run over, if you never want to be there because of all the car traffic.
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Re: The trend of cities banning cars

Post by amberwolf » Oct 30 2018 1:39am

Chalo wrote:
Oct 30 2018 1:24am
Where I live, any bike/ped underpasses would probably be designed big enough to admit emergency vehicles or cop cars, and they'd become de facto shelter for homeless people.
That's already the case with what we have.

But just materials costs of doing that for the entire city for every road to separate traffic would be several times doing jsut bike-width to do that for those, so I'd expect they wouldn't make them very big. (actually I can't imagine they'd ever do it at all, since they don't even do stuff that would be next-to-free)

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Re: The trend of cities banning cars

Post by Punx0r » Oct 30 2018 3:47am

Personally I don't like the idea of being confined to an over-head walk/cycle way, much less an underground one, which will be dark, claustrophobic and possible stink of piss and be a good place to mug people.

The idea of removing cars from a city centre is to free it up. It should be open, with people able to access & exit pretty much anywhere and go by whichever route they wish from point-to-point.

This is probably influenced by my experience being mostly with historic, largely unplanned urban spaces where there is no such offence as jaywalking. The layout is normally "drunken spider's web" rather than freeways with fixed on/off points.

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Re: The trend of cities banning cars

Post by billvon » Oct 30 2018 10:40am

Punx0r wrote:
Oct 30 2018 3:47am
The idea of removing cars from a city centre is to free it up. It should be open, with people able to access & exit pretty much anywhere and go by whichever route they wish from point-to-point.
That's pretty much the opposite of a city, which is a high density concentration of people, meaning housing, services, commerce, leisure etc. It takes a lot of advance planning to make a city "open" like that - but places that implement such planning often do not become cities, because there's a cheaper city just down the road.
This is probably influenced by my experience being mostly with historic, largely unplanned urban spaces where there is no such offence as jaywalking. The layout is normally "drunken spider's web" rather than freeways with fixed on/off points.
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Re: The trend of cities banning cars

Post by billvon » Oct 30 2018 10:54am

amberwolf wrote:
Oct 30 2018 12:07am
I dunno about most places, but around here they'd probably build that stuff with exits only every mile (or less often). They'd also probably only build it wide enough for narrow-handlebar bikes to just barely pass each other, or even for just one bike width. And most likely they would combine the pedestrian and cycleway together, so cycles could not actually use it due to pedestrians clogging it in groups that won't let cycles pass, or cycles having to nearly stop to pass the pedestrians without risk of collision.
Around here there are a lot of types of bike paths.

There are streets with dedicated bike lanes that are no different than regular streets. There are dedicated bikeways with separate right-of-ways. These tend to be near highways, away from commerce and housing. You can get off wherever you like, but there's not much there. There are off-road trails along popular routes, through canyons and across the tops of mesas.
A better solution than segregating the traffic is teaching drivers, cyclists, and pedestrians to pay attention, lowering large vehicle speeds at least a bit, and changing the attitudes of people in general to be courteous to others instead of selfishly acting as if the entire road and world were all about them, disregarding anyone else on the road and driving how and where they feel like.
That's also a good idea, but "be nice to each other" has a limited effectiveness. Here, the 3 foot rule has had some effect.


Right now, here in my area of Phoenix, especially around business / shopping centers, Uber and Lyft and the like have significantly increased individual car traffic and illegal/unsafe roadside parking, because now people who had no car and walked or rode now ride in those, and the U&L/etc drivers then hang around or drive around areas that tend to get more calls.

We used to have a few taxis that did this sort of thing, but not nearly as many as the U&L/etc cars--and most of the taxis would stop and park in a parking lot when not carrying passengers, and were generally safer drivers than most of the U&L/etc drivers seem to be.
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Re: The trend of cities banning cars

Post by classicalgas » Nov 25 2018 2:01am

You would think that the solution to big vehicles in the central city would be easy...just jack the prices of car size parking places up until no one can afford them.

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Re: The trend of cities banning cars

Post by Chalo » Nov 25 2018 4:28am

classicalgas wrote:
Nov 25 2018 2:01am
You would think that the solution to big vehicles in the central city would be easy...just jack the prices of car size parking places up until no one can afford them.
That sounds like a recipe for having only the very worst people driving their own cars in the central city. Self-entitled rich fux, cops, elected officials, and mobsters-- the least accountable drivers around.
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Re: The trend of cities banning cars

Post by sendler2112 » Nov 25 2018 9:41am

Barcelona is converting to "Super Blocks" with cars allowed only every 3rd street in grids.
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Re: The trend of cities banning cars

Post by Punx0r » Nov 25 2018 2:54pm

Interesting idea

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Re: The trend of cities banning cars

Post by goatman » Jan 19 2020 11:10pm

I laugh because the roads are backed up with cars, people are packed like sardines in transit vehicles and im zipping around on bike lanes that are empty.

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