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Re: [NewMobilityCafe] "Highjacking sustainable transport"

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  • Stephen Plowden
    Jane Jacobs principles Thanks to Eric for formulating these principles. I think we would all agree that the thrust of them is right, but some of them seem a
    Message 1 of 5 , Jun 1, 2006
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      Jane Jacobs principles

      Thanks to Eric for formulating these principles. I think we would all
      agree that the thrust of them is right, but some of them seem a bit
      arbitrary (especially the figures mentioned in numbers 3, 10 and 11);
      also I think we need some examples of the small projects we favour;
      also, since the number of fruitful actions is so large, we need some
      indication of the order in which things should be looked at.

      Deadline pressures mean that I cannot contribute to this or other café
      discussion for at least the next month, but here is a shot at two
      non-arbitrary principles (the wording of both needs improvement) which I
      think would help.

      1. Management before investment. No plans to increase road capacity
      should be put forward (where capacity is measured in terms of motor
      vehicles) unless it can be shown that they would still be necessary even
      when the existing roads were optimally managed. Showing this would
      usually require actually implementing management measures and observing
      their effects, not just trying to model them. (This is a common sense
      principle. Large schemes are expensive, damaging and irreversible. Of
      course they should not be undertaken if there is serious reason to
      suppose that the claimed benefits would not materialise or that they
      could be achieved in other less expensive and damaging ways.)

      2. There should be a single transport budget for a town, or other local
      authority area, to be allocated as benefit/cost ratios, as modified or
      reinforced by social and environmental considerations, indicate. It
      should also be legitimate to include some land-uses schemes in the
      budget (e.g. subsidies for small local facilities such as shops, post
      offices, swimming pools, to reduce the need for people to travel, often
      by motorised means, outside their neighbourhoods).

      These two principles point in the same direction. Small projects such as
      bus priorities, safety schemes, commonly show much higher benefit/cost
      ratios, even when assessed by methods which leave out important
      benefits, than large projects, even when assessed in unduly flattering
      ways.



      Eric.Britton wrote:

      > /"Highjacking sustainable transport"/ – What a great and useful
      > phrase! One that we will do well to keep in our sights as proposals
      > and propositions that try to associate with the label step forth.
      > Thanks Rory.
      >
      > Which gets me back to Fair Transport and our idea for a set of Jacobs
      > Rules “tests” for sustainability and fairness, on which up to now we
      > have had no concrete feedback and commentary. So I wonder if I might
      > encourage those of you who care about these things enough to take the
      > time to work your way down this provisional short list, and then to
      > share your comments and suggestions with me and us with a view to
      > turning it into a more bullet proof and practically useful working
      > tool. I must say that I have been trying to make it shorter, but at
      > the same time I think it is important that we make sure there are no
      > huge loopholes here.
      >
      > So there you have our latest on this. And thanks for giving this your
      > time and thought. Your reward? Well you know that.
      >
      > org
      >
      > *Fair Transport -- and Jacobs Rules** *
      >
      > “Fair Transport” targets is a new policy model for the sector, which
      > seeks to build on and extend the somewhat abstract and often ambiguous
      > concept of sustainable transport or sustainable mobility. The specific
      > idea behind Fair Transport is to move beyond generalities and instead
      > come up with a number of /specific criteria,/ /sign posts and tests/
      > to guide investments, decisions and actions in the transport field,
      > and in particular those that are funded through taxpayer contributions
      > or which require public support or authorization.
      >
      > The shortlist that follows, while still provisional and subject to
      > review and comment, is our present best-stab at providing such a check
      > list. We are convinced that no public or publicly supported projects
      > should be carried out without these tests being applied and the
      > results made openly and publicly available in time to make, support or
      > eventually block or modify the go-ahead decisions that traditionally
      > have been made more or less in isolation in central places.
      >
      > 1. *Human and social impacts:* Requires as the very first priority
      > a detailed and mature understanding of how the proposed new,
      > improved or restructured transport investment, policy or action
      > is going to impact on “we, ordinary people, step by step in our
      > daily lives”. Low income groups need as a priority excellent
      > walking, cycling and bus service provision and the means to get
      > rural produce to market.
      > 2. *Near term improvements:* The Fair Transport approach places
      > heavy emphasis on projects and policies which lead to
      > /measurable near term improvements/ within the electoral cycle
      > of the decision makers in place. (say less than 2-4 years to
      > achievement). All such targeted improvements must, however, be
      > within the broader strategic (that is long term) policy frame as
      > set out here and mandated by the concepts of sustainable
      > development..
      > 3. *Non-Transport Solutions*: Recognizes that at least a good half
      > of the solutions needed to deal with problems or insufficiencies
      > that in a first instance are identified with ‘transport
      > shortcomings’ must in fact involve non-transport solutions .
      > This means that the policy and decision makers need to have full
      > knowledge of these parts of the solution set as well (typical
      > examples being locational and land use changes, public spaces,
      > TDM, time management, mobility substitutes, etc.)
      > 4. *Full Access for All*: All projects much provide or lead to
      > full, fair and safe access to people of all ages, conditions of
      > health, economic situation and in terms of where they live and
      > work. Convenient rural accessibility to all services and
      > functions is critical.
      > 5. *Modal choice*: Provides full and fair consideration of all
      > forms of mobility (human-powered, public transport,
      > intermediate/shared transport forms, motorized private
      > transport) in the areas of planning, financing and
      > infrastructure provision, maintenance and operation – but
      > subjecting them to strict consideration of lowest life-cycle CO2
      > emissions, least polluting, most equitable, most cost effective,
      > and most resource economical. Given the fact that the majority
      > of people are not car owner/drivers (or should not be), non
      > “own-car” solutions should be heavily favored
      > 6. *Cost effectiveness*: (a) Represents the cheapest way to get the
      > (full) job done to the key targeted specifications (those being
      > human) while (b) also fully serving non-drivers and lower income
      > groups.
      > 7. *Gender, Women and Children*: Gives full consideration to
      > critical (and heretofore generally neglected) gender differences
      > and needs at all stages of the discussion, planning, and
      > decision process. This can only be assured through full
      > representation and participation of female leaders and active
      > participants. Thus no project should be allowed to go ahead
      > unless there is a strong plurality at least of female
      > participation and leadership in the decision stage.
      > 8. *Packages of Measures*: the Fair Transport paradigm will be
      > distinguished from the old ways of planning and making
      > investments by the fact that it will in most places be
      > characterized by very large numbers of often quite small
      > projects and initiatives. And by many more actors and
      > participants. One of the main challenges of an effective Fair
      > Transport policy will be to find ways to see these various
      > measures as interactive synergistic and mutually supporting
      > projects within a unified greater whole. This is a significant
      > challenge to our planners at all levels.
      > 9. *New Actors/Entrepreneurship:* The transport sector has
      > traditionally been heavily regulated in ways in which new
      > approaches and new actors are more or less actively discouraged
      > or blocked. A Fair Transport policy will create a much more open
      > attitude and support structure for innovation, from the private
      > and public sectors and from volunteer and community groups.
      > 10. *Small project strategies and management:* On the understanding
      > that what is needed is large numbers of small projects each
      > doing their own job, requires that at least 50% of the total
      > investment budget be allocated to small projects (criteria?).
      > These projects should be generated through local actions and
      > participation.
      > 11. *Large projects*: Suggests that any large project (say more than
      > $100k) be carefully inspected to ensure that its most important
      > human and social (this includes economic and environmental)
      > objectives cannot be better met by one or a set of smaller
      > projects or policies.
      > 12. *Public spaces and community*: Serves to improve quantity,
      > quality, and social usefulness of public spaces, thereby
      > reinforcing human contacts, sense of community, local and
      > regional culture
      > 13. *New Tools:* The traditional toolset (and mindset) of the
      > planners and policy makers in the sector need to be dramatically
      > expanded and more fully integrated in all project stages. A very
      > incomplete list would include direct involvement of behavioral
      > psychologists gender specialists, public space experts, and new
      > forms of pubic participation and interactive communications.
      > (This list is incomplete and intended here only for the purposes
      > of giving a first indication.)
      > 14. *Open public reporting:* All planning and project information,
      > technical analysis, cost information, key parameters, etc.
      > should be publicly available in a convenient transparent form
      > which is make available both locally and nationally and to the
      > international community with expertise and longer term interests
      > in these areas.
      >
      > -----Original Message-----
      > *Behalf Of *Rory McMullan *Sent:* Friday, May 12, 2006 12:53 PM *To:*
      > NewMobilityCafe@yahoogroups.com
      > *Subject:* Re: [NewMobilityCafe] Paris at slower speeds with cleaner
      > exhaust, Fair?
      >
      > Perhaps this is part of the fair transport debate. Although cleaner
      > fuels are a great advance and should be applauded and promoted, I do
      > have the feeling that the auto, green fuel, and auto accessory
      > companies are highjacking the sustainable transport and
      > environmentally friendly transport issues.
      >
      > I believe demand management should be the priority for the movement,
      > combined with the issues of smart growth and accessibility. One aim of
      > sustainable transport must be to reduce the overall need for travel by
      > powered vehicles, in the interest not only of reduced emissions and
      > cleaner air, but also for safer streets and more livable equitable cities.
      >
      > Rory McMullan, - http://www.urbangreenfair.org.uk/
      >
      >
      >
      > Check in here via the homepage at http://www.newmobility.org
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      > But please think twice before posting to the group as a whole
      > (It might be that your note is best sent to one person?)
      >
      >
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