--- In firstname.lastname@example.org
, sidneyfalco@... wrote:
> Erik's defense of the tram is too ideological and does not speak
> to the issues. Nobody has attacked the tram per se, but any
> public project has to be judged in terms of its specific location
> and who are the beneficiaries. The Marseille tram was sold on the
> basis of its alleged environmental benefits and its ability to
> reduce auto congestion in the central city. These have yet to
> materialize and the prognosis is poor. The Marseille tram
> presents a pretty picture to the tourists and far-away promoters.
> But the results do not match the hype. One reason seems to be
> that the tram routes chosen follow too closely existing Metro
> lines. Another is that most people who use the Tram, like myself,
> don't own cars or motorbikes. Thus far, the Marseille tram seems
> to have benefitted mainly the real estate developers who have
> succeeded in moving huge numbers of low income residents into
> other areas. In the States we call it "urban renewal." Erik needs
> to come to Marseille and inform himself of our situation so that
> he might add facts to his perspective. His suggestion that les
> Marseillaise should write letters to the editor is an insult.
You're right that good public transport does not in itself make cars
and mopeds disappear, but as I say, better public transport is part
of the answer. I believe many motorists feel they are "above" public
transport in one way or another, and that is why public transport
needs some glitz if it is to really help solve the problems. Trams do
in fact bring a lot of pedestrians to the street, which can work as a
sort of critical mass to calm the pace of traffic.
The suggestion to write a letter to the editor was not intended as an
insult. Obviously you do what you please, but nothing is likely to
happen without some sort of public relations effort, and that has to
start somewhere. I agree that having the police ticket offenders is
one good way forward.