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Think 'Out of the Box'

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  • Tom Farr
    Philadelphia, PA May 16, 2008 Tom Farr, director, Better Times, inc. a nonprofit association. We all know cycling is great – and, bicycles save gas, reduce
    Message 1 of 6 , May 16, 2008
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      Philadelphia, PA
      May 16, 2008
      Tom Farr, director, Better Times, inc. a nonprofit association.

      We all know cycling is great – and, bicycles save gas, reduce traffic
      congestion, fight global warming and make us fit and trim instead of
      fat. Clearly, the world would be much better off if millions more rode
      bikes.

      And, we all know that the 700 million cars will soon be over a billion
      as China and India continue their economic progress; everyone loves
      their cars – the power, the freedom and the sexy designs. But, the
      economic resources expended on cars, their roads and their fuel has
      grown beyond the point of rational justification. Societies around
      the globe want more cars, more fuel and more roads as desperately as
      the addict wants his fix.

      So, what's going to happen as gas prices continue to rise?

      This morning, I heard on CNN that Christiane Amanpour, their renowned
      Chief International Correspondent, rides a bike to work – but, not
      today, it is raining. Let me tell you about a concept we are
      promoting at Better Times.

      "Roadways for People" are enclosed and elevated roadways for bicycles,
      pedestrians and small electric scooters. The reason we are so excited
      about them is that they are pre-designed modular components; they are
      simply `assembled' to form a roadway that can run over existing
      streets, rivers, train tracks and parks. This means: THEY ARE VERY
      INEXPENSIVE. THEY DO NOT DISRUPT THE COMMUNITY DURING CONSTRUCTION.
      Because they are elevated, they don't compete with the cars or trucks
      or buses. WE WANT PEOPLE RIDING BIKES – WE DON'T NEED TO START A WAR
      with car drivers fighting over limited resources (space on the asphalt).

      If a Roadway for People network existed in New York City, Christiane
      Amanpour could have ridden her bike to work because the rain wouldn't
      have affected her (since the roadway is enclosed); she could also ride
      this winter in a snowstorm (and laugh at the cars stuck on the streets
      below); and, she would not become one of the 15,000 struck by cars
      each year in New York.

      Here's the problem: people think in a box. A different concept = A
      nut talking about a stupid idea. Scientists have found only 2% of
      people will give serious consideration to a new concept; 97% will run
      away. If you happen to be one of those 2%, check out our website
      where this concept is discussed in great detail; you will see
      pictures, designs, an economic analysis and much more! Can you
      imagine, within 10 years 850 million people will be riding 2.6
      trillion miles each year on 3,300 Roadway for People networks in urban
      areas around the world. This will prevent 85 billion gallons of
      gasoline from being burned.

      Give it a try – think out of the box.

      Warmest regards and may you have good weather and find a safe road for
      biking,
      Tom Farr
      Better Times
    • Simon Baddeley
      http://www.worldchanging.com/archives/008025.html Gas guzzlers are losing their resale value--fast. Via Calculated Risk, USAToday is reporting that SUV resale
      Message 2 of 6 , May 16, 2008
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        http://www.worldchanging.com/archives/008025.html

        Gas guzzlers are losing their resale value--fast.

        Via Calculated Risk, USAToday is reporting that SUV resale value is
        plummeting.

        Wholesale prices on big SUVs such as Chevrolet Tahoes, Ford Expeditions and
        Toyota Sequoias are down 17% from a year ago. Full-size pickups have fallen
        as much as 15%...

        The reason, obviously, is that soaring gas prices are souring car buyers on
        the big guzzlers. When a gallon of gas was cheaper than a cuppa joe, size
        and power seemed like nifty luxuries. But with gas nudging $4, the luxuries
        have become albatrosses.

        There's absolutely no reason for "I-told-you-so's" here. Cars are the
        second largest purchase most people ever make, next to their homes, so rapid
        depreciation will be a serious hit to a lot of families. Still, there's not
        all that much to be done: SUV owners, whether they knew it or not, were
        making a bet that oil would stay cheap for a good, long while. It didn't,
        and they're paying the price for a bet gone bad.

        The only thing that we can do, collectively, is to stop assuming that oil
        will be cheaper in the future than it is today. Maybe it will be; but the
        experience of the last 8 years suggests otherwise. Still, despite price
        hikes that outstripped most predictions, there are all sorts of decisions --
        from what kind of cars to buy, to what kinds of neighbourhoods to build, to
        what kind of transportation investments we should pay for -- that are being
        made under the tacit assumption that gas prices will come back to earth.

        That's a risky bet. Just ask someone who's trying to trade in a Toyota
        Sequoia.
      • Matt Hohmeister
        You sound pretty sure here--and quite frankly, I hope you re right. I guess we ll find out in November how smart [or dumb] American voters are.
        Message 3 of 6 , May 16, 2008
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          You sound pretty sure here--and quite frankly, I hope you're right. I
          guess we'll find out in November how smart [or dumb] American voters are.

          > I expect we're going to be very busy building carfree
          > cities starting on January 20, 2009, when Obama will
          > be inaugurated.
        • J.H. Crawford
          Hi All, I just approved a post from Tom Farr regarding overhead enclosed bikeways. Nobody will be surprised to know that I m opposed to anything overhead. Just
          Message 4 of 6 , May 16, 2008
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            Hi All,

            I just approved a post from Tom Farr regarding overhead
            enclosed bikeways.

            Nobody will be surprised to know that I'm opposed to anything
            overhead. Just move the cars off the streets and there will
            be plenty of room for bikes.

            As a reminder, see:

            http://carfree.com/cpix/9nyc0229.jpg

            for why this is not something to do to your city.

            If you're worried about the rain/snow/sleet/sun,
            just build arcades:

            http://carfree.com/cpix/8blg0113.jpg

            Problem solved, 500 years ago.

            Best,

            Joel



            At 2008-05-16 12:17, you wrote:

            >Philadelphia, PA
            >May 16, 2008
            >Tom Farr, director, Better Times, inc. a nonprofit association.
            >
            >We all know cycling is great – and, bicycles save gas, reduce traffic
            >congestion, fight global warming and make us fit and trim instead of
            >fat. Clearly, the world would be much better off if millions more rode
            >bikes.
            >
            >And, we all know that the 700 million cars will soon be over a billion
            >as China and India continue their economic progress; everyone loves
            >their cars – the power, the freedom and the sexy designs. But, the
            >economic resources expended on cars, their roads and their fuel has
            >grown beyond the point of rational justification. Societies around
            >the globe want more cars, more fuel and more roads as desperately as
            >the addict wants his fix.
            >
            >So, what's going to happen as gas prices continue to rise?
            >
            >This morning, I heard on CNN that Christiane Amanpour, their renowned
            >Chief International Correspondent, rides a bike to work – but, not
            >today, it is raining. Let me tell you about a concept we are
            >promoting at Better Times.
            >
            >"Roadways for People" are enclosed and elevated roadways for bicycles,
            >pedestrians and small electric scooters. The reason we are so excited
            >about them is that they are pre-designed modular components; they are
            >simply `assembled' to form a roadway that can run over existing
            >streets, rivers, train tracks and parks. This means: THEY ARE VERY
            >INEXPENSIVE. THEY DO NOT DISRUPT THE COMMUNITY DURING CONSTRUCTION.
            >Because they are elevated, they don't compete with the cars or trucks
            >or buses. WE WANT PEOPLE RIDING BIKES – WE DON'T NEED TO START A WAR
            >with car drivers fighting over limited resources (space on the asphalt).
            >
            >If a Roadway for People network existed in New York City, Christiane
            >Amanpour could have ridden her bike to work because the rain wouldn't
            >have affected her (since the roadway is enclosed); she could also ride
            >this winter in a snowstorm (and laugh at the cars stuck on the streets
            >below); and, she would not become one of the 15,000 struck by cars
            >each year in New York.
            >
            >Here's the problem: people think in a box. A different concept = A
            >nut talking about a stupid idea. Scientists have found only 2% of
            >people will give serious consideration to a new concept; 97% will run
            >away. If you happen to be one of those 2%, check out our website
            >where this concept is discussed in great detail; you will see
            >pictures, designs, an economic analysis and much more! Can you
            >imagine, within 10 years 850 million people will be riding 2.6
            >trillion miles each year on 3,300 Roadway for People networks in urban
            >areas around the world. This will prevent 85 billion gallons of
            >gasoline from being burned.
            >
            >Give it a try – think out of the box.
            >
            >Warmest regards and may you have good weather and find a safe road for
            >biking,
            >Tom Farr
            >Better Times
            >
            >



            ----- ### -----
            J.H. Crawford Carfree Cities
            mailbox@... http://www.carfree.com
          • Xavier Treviño
            ... From: J.H. Crawford mailbox@carfree.com ... just build arcades: Well, that is what Transit is all about: It rains, it snows, you do not have the mood to
            Message 5 of 6 , May 17, 2008
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              ----- Original Message ----
              From: J.H. Crawford mailbox@...
              > If you're worried about the rain/snow/sleet/ sun,
              just build arcades:

              Well, that is what Transit is all about: It rains, it snows, you do not have the mood to drive? Take a train/bus, or even a cab, or carpool... otherwise ride a bike!
              Maybe Tom, you should think out of the box: streets are cooperative spaces for all people (including car drivers).
              X.
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