News & links

Paris Offers Sweet Incentives to Ditch Your Car for a Bike
The city will reimburse residents who buy e-bikes and cargo bikes by up to €600. A better bet for cities than massive electric car subsidies that do nothing to address congestion issues?
Bicycling, 07/03/2018

California's Love of Cars Is Fueling Its Housing Crisis
Adding an above-ground parking spot costs $27,000, just for construction, while an underground space runs around $35,000, according to Donald Shoup in 2014.
Bloomberg, 06/03/2018

San Jose Becomes Fourth California City to Adopt VMT as Metric for Traffic Impacts
San Jose City Council has adopted a new citywide policy that requires new developments to account for the amount of vehicle travel they would produce, rather than just how much they will delay car traffic. And transportation projects that encourage travel by transit, bike, or walking may no longer even have to go through a CEQA analysis for transportation impacts, since it is presumed they will produce fewer vehicles miles traveled.
Streetsblog Cal, 06/03/2018

Electric Bikes Want To Take On Everyone - Even Uber
Dockless, electric bike sharing is the future?
Wired, 22/02/2018

Highrise car parks to be banned in drive to improve city streetscapes
Underground car parking would be the only type allowed in most city apartment and office developments, under new rules being considered by Melbourne City Council. Many additional streetscape-improving policies are being planned.
The Age, 15/02/2018

These maps reveal the truth about population density across Europe
Simply dividing the number of people by the land area of a country is not always the best way to understand population density.
CityMetric, 25/01/2018

Plan To Hike Taxes Near Big Subway Projects
NY State 2019 budget plan would give the Metropolitan Transportation Authority the power to create "transportation improvement subdistricts" in areas where property values would increase because of transit projects.
Patch Media, 23/01/2018

Didi has a brilliant plan to contain the threat of China’s bike-sharing services
By introducing its own bike sharing service inside its own app, Didi aims to tame Ofo and Bluegogo. It wants them to exist as features inside its app, rather than develop services that could challenge Didi’s dominance.
Techcrunch, 17/01/2018

ART project ‘a bit of a lemon,’ mayor says as problems mount
Mayor Tim Keller and his administration say problems with the Albuquerque Bus Rapid Transit project are so grave that they won’t even venture a guess on when the project will be operational.
Albuquerque Journal, 09/01/2018

Netflix, Deliveroo and terrorism blamed for huge dip in Tube passenger numbers
Figures show London Underground users dropped by 2 per cent in a year, meaning 4 million fewer people are travelling on the Tube.
The Independent, 03/01/2018

Why experts believe cheaper, better lidar is right around the corner
Lidar used to cost $75,000, but the price may fall to $100. Like radar, lidar scanners can measure distances with high accuracy. Some lidar sensors can even measure velocity, and lidar provides high resolution and works about as well in any lighting.
Ars Technica, 01/01/2018

Empty Buses Allegedly Help Automaker Get Its Hands On Electric Car Subsidies
A national rule compels carmakers to prove that a customer has driven a new-energy car at least 30,000 km on the road before the manufacturer can apply for a subsidy for it.
Caixin, 28/12/2017

Docks Off
U.S. cities are being invaded by dock-less bike share. It’s going to be messy—and worth it.
Slate, 18/12/2017

Traffic fumes in city streets 'largely wipe out exercise benefits for over-60s'
Walking in Oxford St compared to Hype Park: A study highlights the risks to health by walking along polluted roads, for the over-60s with specific pre-existing medical conditions.
The Guardian, 06/12/2017

Electric cars already cheaper to own and run than petrol or diesel – study
The researchers analysed the total cost of ownership of cars over four years, including the purchase price and depreciation, fuel, insurance, taxation and maintenance. Pure electric cars came out cheapest in all the markets examined.
The Guardian, 02/12/2017

To Reduce Pollution, London Will Outlaw Parking Construction
Khan’s goal is to increase the share of trips by foot, bike, or transit from 64 percent to 80 percent over the next 25 years, according to the Times, eliminating 3 million daily car trips.
Streetsblog, 28/11/2017

WeChat Hitches Ride on Guangzhou Metro
Since unlike the existing public transport card, WeChat payment does not offer discounts to frequent riders, it's likely to appeal to only irregular users.
Caixin, 20/11/2017

Wheels Fall Off Wuhan’s Government-Backed Bikes
Wuhan Huantou, the operator of Wuhan’s bike-rental service, announced in a statement that its bicycle business will cease operation on Sunday. This will mean its 40,000 public bikes will be removed from the city’s streets.
Caixin, 20/11/2017

China Revises Key Policy to Rein in Subway Boom
The NDRC is reportedly considering tightening the 2003 rules on population, GDP and revenue that are applied to cities wanting to build subways.
Caixin, 18/11/2017

Is Rapid Growth of Subway Systems in China Losing Steam?
"Since Baotou’s project was halted, the NDRC and its local commissions have been giving greater consideration to the financial risks of proposed subway projects."
Caixin, 13/11/2017

London's Oxford Street could be traffic-free by December 2018, says mayor
Large parts of London's Oxford Street could be pedestrianised by December 2018, under plans put forward by London Mayor Sadiq Khan.
BBC, 06/11/2017

Faster Growth Begins With a Land Tax in U.S. Cities
The tax would reduce land prices and increase the incentive to build more, which in turn will help drive down rents, making a city more affordable.
Bloomberg, 24/10/2017

Councils' knee-jerk reaction is the problem, not share bikes
Instead of trying to control and repress this free-floating, revolutionary and joyful way of getting around our city, by corralling the bikes into set parking areas, why don't councils work on creating the best possible conditions for it to work?
Sydney Morning Herald, 18/10/2017

London Overground is experimenting with telling passengers which bits of the next train is busiest
Can the same be done for BRT buses on high frequency lines?
CityMetric, 17/10/2017

The European cities leading the way in car-free living in a bid to tackle toxic air pollution
Copenhagen, Madrid, Oslo, Hamburg, Paris, Athens, Brussels.
Evening Standard, 16/10/2017

Our cities need fewer cars, not cleaner cars
Electric cars won’t eradicate gridlocks and air pollution, but carbon footprints could be cut by favouring pedestrians, cyclists and mass transit.
The Guardian, 16/10/2017

Inner-city living makes for healthier, happier people, study finds
The study – by Oxford University and the University of Hong Kong – showed that in 22 British cities people living in built-up residential areas had lower levels of obesity and exercised more than residents in scattered, suburban homes.
The Guardian (citing Lancet), 06/10/2017

Amsterdam Rethinks the Traffic Light’s Role in City Planning
“In the end, traffic light infrastructure is an infrastructure for cars, not an infrastructure for people on bikes and people walking. In locations with high levels of people on bikes and people walking, traffic lights maybe aren’t appropriate.”
Next City, 05/10/2017

Green Gentrification, and How Environmentalists Can Avoid It
A new report from the Prevention Institute — Healthy Development Without Displacement: Realizing the Vision of Healthy Communities for All — aims to connect healthy community development with sound anti-displacement policies.
NRDC, 05/10/2017

The ‘New Urbanism’ Movement Might Be Dead
Like 'big data', New Urbanism has become so mainstream that it’s hard to think of it as a separate movement anymore.
Governing, 01/10/2017

UK is on the road to a cycling revolution
Mobike and the other new arrivals, Ofo, OBike and Urbo, find themselves in harmony with the UK government's health and transportation plans.
China Daily, 30/09/2017

More showers, lockers for workers who cycle to office could be a reality, with grant extension
Singapore transport authority funds construction of facilities, Travel Smart Rewards, and Travel Smart Consultancy Vouchers
Straits Times, 29/09/2017

Los Angeles' legendary palm trees are dying – and few will be replaced
A beetle known as the South American palm weevil and a fungus called Fusarium are killing palm trees across southern California ... and doing residents a big favour.
The Guardian, 29/09/2017

New report reveals huge social value of London’s high streets
A report explores the threats to high streets as well as their value and offers recommendations to strengthen them.
LSECities, 29/09/2017

Deloitte 4+ months late on breach: New poster child for bad security practices?
Trust in big consulting firms? Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Ltd. is the world’s No. 1 security consulting group.
Tech Beacon, 28/09/2017

UnionPay launches mobile payment in public transportation in 20 cities
"Public transportation, having a large user group, high frequency of use and position information, is one of the best industries where companies can attract users and collect data."
China Daily, 28/09/2017

Tfl plans to make £322m by collecting data from passengers' mobiles via Tube Wi-Fi
TfL in 2016 ran a pilot which tracked Wi-Fi signals from 5.6 million phones as people moved around the London Underground, even if they weren't connected to a Wi-Fi network. It is now in consultation about tracking passengers on a permanent basis.
Sky News, 27/09/2017

Bike-sharing schemes might seem like a waste of space but the economics makes sense
The economic models behind dockless bike share schemes actually have as much to do with data mining, advertising and turning a profit from interest on the deposits as from the bike rental itself.
The Conversation, 19/09/2017

Build it and they will come? Why Britain's 1960s cycling revolution flopped
“If the reasons for Stevenage’s failure to encourage cycling were that it was too easy to drive, then no amount of investment in marketing the town’s cycling facilities would have changed travel behaviour.”
The Guardian, 19/09/2017

Idea to use MTR dividends to subsidise fares is way off track
"Public transport is widely used by all people except those at the very top of the income range. I don’t need the cheaper fares. Yet I will be given them."
SCMP, 08/07/2017

Dubai on Empty
Nothing actually goes anywhere. The wide lanes loop around endlessly, and then there’s no place to go. No plaza or square, no center. Nowhere to hang out, nowhere to walk.
Vanity Fair, 15/04/2011