Decongestion in Cities Around the World

good.jpg

GOOD Magazine profiles five innovations in urban transportation that you don’t find in America, yet. Josh Jackson reports:

Cities around the world are leaps and bounds ahead of America when it comes to issues of urban transit. Though this country is woefully lagging, it’s a rare example of when falling behind actually works in your favor: as U.S. cities work to update their transportation systems for the 21st century, they don’t have to reinvent the wheel. The solutions are already out there.

In the States, cycling is still for the most part recreational. In Copenhagen, though, perhaps the world’s most bicycle-friendly city, 36 percent of commuters rode to work in 2003, 33 percent used public transit, and 27 percent drove. But Copenhagen’s streets haven’t always been so balanced: In the 1970s, when bike riding was at an all-time low, the city’s traffic-congested downtown resembled American cities of the same era. Yet unlike their American counterparts, who tried to solve congestion by building more roads, Danish planners took an alternative approach: they tried to reduce the number of cars.

Photo: Aaron Naparstek

ALSO ON STREETSBLOG

STREETSBLOG USA

America Has a Terrible Traffic Safety Record Because We Drive Too Much

|
Even though the U.S. traffic fatality rate per mile driven has fallen by two-thirds in the last 50 years, America today still has the deadliest road system per capita in the developed world. Much of the improvement from safer driving and better emergency care has been wiped out by increases in total traffic. The American approach to traffic safety has emphasized seatbelt use, vehicle standards, […]
STREETSBLOG SF

Berlin’s Striking Cycling Renaissance

|
Berlin is a hugely under-appreciated cycling city. Often overshadowed by the accomplishments of Amsterdam and Copenhagen, over the past two decades Berlin has quietly experienced what is perhaps the most striking cycling renaissance in the world. On any given day, more trips are now made by bicycle in Berlin than any other European city. Berlin […]

Weinshall in Stockholm: Praying for Safer Streets

|
"The tragic loss of two bicyclists this week has shocked all of us and our thoughts and prayers are with the victims’ families and friends. Unfortunately, New York City’s crowded streets often cause conflict between cars and bicyclists as they attempt to share limited space." — NYC DOT statement, June 29, 2006. On Thursday, June […]