RE: [NewMobilityCafe] The future of "xTransit"
Those are excellent cautionary remarks Michael. You ask why we say “Better, Faster, Cheaper.” Let me see if I can respond usefully.
Well the starting point is that our present mainly car-based arrangements in cities are our target. SO what we are looking for is . .
1. Better. We seem to have no problem with that one.
2. Faster: Faster than getting stuck in traffic (bikes, buses and metros are faster than cars in Paris today for many parts of the day, and we are not the only ones). And faster to plan and bring on line than all those high cost old technology approaches. (NB. It can be faster (trip time) and slowth (time speeds) at the same time, let’s not forget.)
3. Cheaper: Cheaper for the citizen to get around in the city. Cheaper for the city than those very high cost old mobility technology ( invariably poorly adapted to the travel requirements of the 21st century) approaches
Again, just to recall the New Mobility strategy in its basic points:
1. Reduce VM/KT radically.
2. And do it fast: (In months or a couple of years max. We cannot for all the reasons you all know continue to wait. And wait)
3. Improve and extend the ‘bouquet” of new mobility services: We know that a whole range of new service types are needed, that they need to be complements, and that they need to offer better, faster and cheaper (sorry!) transportation than the old car-intensive arrangements.
4. Make use of the “infrastructure joker”: The transportation infrastructures of our cities have for the most part been vastly overbuilt. That just great, since it means that we can take over substantial portions of the network for far more efficient modes.
5. Paying for it: No problem. We simply take over 50% of the transport related budgets and use it to address to projects and reforms that are going to make big differences with the next four to five (max.) years.
6. Partnerships: This approach, because it is new and unfamiliar to most people, is unlike to be understood the first times around. .Hence a major education, , consultation and outreach efforts is going to be needed in each place to make it work. Old mobility was the terrain in which decisions were made by transportation experts. New mobility is based on outreach and harnessing the great strengths of the informed and educated populations of our cities. Public/private/citizen partnerships.
My point is that to move ahead with any of this in time to save the planet and the life quality of the majority of the people who live in cities (no, they are not happy car owner-drivers, get out there and count them) we need to have a unified, coherent, and memorable strategy. The entire work and purpose of the New Mobility Agenda is given over to trying to assist in just this important task.
New Mobility Partnerships
8, rue Joseph Bara – 75006 Paris France
T: 331 4326 1323 – www.newmobility.org
On Behalf Of Michael Yeates
Sent: Wednesday, 27 August 2008 03:00
Subject: [NewMobilityCafe] The future of "xTransit"
Eric and all,
I suggest "we" should be extremely wary of anything "new" that also aims to be "faster" see (c) below, now in red.
Several reasons ... here are three and no doubt there are heaps of others....
1. the travel-distance-time problem if faster generates longer trips etc etc
2. "faster" ... or faster than ...?
3. faster usually results in negative outcomes, often very difficult to predict, and even more difficult to prevent (cars in urban areas being an example)
There is a similar problem with "cheaper" in that it is actually far more expensive to use a car than to use public transport now .. so how much more cheap ...??? But others say public transport per capita carried is far more expensive. And do we agree on what "costs" and "benefits" should be costed and how to handle the assignment of cost value(s)?
On the other hand, "better" does not have this type of problem yet still permits trade-offs ...!
So should "faster" and "cheaper" simply be deleted?
Further, surely there are some existing "modes" that at least begin to illustrate "xTransit" or what it is ...? Perhaps some of these examples should be collected and explained.
Finally, is the problem really about creating something that is competitive with car use such that it is then assumed car use will be or can be, reduced? The risk here is that the car is apparently so enticing and advantageous that perhaps it is unwise to emphasise this, implicitly or explicitly.
This seems to leave us in the same bind as those who argue public transport is not good enough because it involves say a walk of 200m ... or those who don't want to cycle to a major public transport node 1km away ... so they still choose to use a car ...!
There also seems to be a multi-modal aspect missing from the concept???
It is from this perspective that I personally see improving the existing options to cars as far "better" than trying to create new modes ..