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Re: Car-free cities and jobs

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  • mauk_mcamuk
    ... Hrrrrrm... Would it be possible to pitch a carfree city as a planned urban development, or essentially a large suburb? In other words, have the large
    Message 1 of 23 , Nov 7, 2003
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      > Not necessarily so. I found two locations in the Netherlands, one
      > of the most densely populated nations in the world, where the
      > Reference Design could be built without significant alteration.
      > It's true that in mountainous regions the good spaces may be
      > mostly taken, but anywhere we're building suburbs today is a
      > potential spot for a carfree city. The spaces don't need to be huge
      > in order to support a large population.
      >

      Hrrrrrm... Would it be possible to pitch a "carfree city" as a
      planned urban development, or essentially a large suburb? In other
      words, have the large industrial areas contain MAJOR parking areas at
      first, and essentially let the first few developments grow using a
      nearby city as the economic base. After you get a few neighborhoods
      established, with a little luck, it would become self-sustaining.



      > >2) Building a city from scratch requires a formidable pile of
      capital.
      >
      > So does any other development project; billion-dollar projects are
      > now routine. The banks have the money; what's required is a
      developer
      > who believes in the idea and can convince a bank to fund it. This is
      > well within the realm of possibility.
      >

      Have you done any work on how much capital it would take? more
      importantly, how would you pay that capital back? Taxes on
      residents?
    • Mike Neuman
      I suppose more trees in the cities would help, if nothing else but to not make things worse with more and more pavement. Spraying with cool water also keeps
      Message 2 of 23 , Nov 7, 2003
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        I suppose more trees in the cities would help, if nothing else but to
        not make things worse with more and more pavement.

        Spraying with cool water also keeps people's internal temperatures
        down. Other ways to stay cool include spending more time in the
        basement (if you have one), staying out of the sun, avoiding
        strenuous physical activities and drinking fluids. But air
        conditioning will become key for many areas, as it has already for
        many metropolitan areas located in the warmer climates.

        There doesn't appear to be much else one can do, other than to hope
        such a heat wave doesn't occur again, in Europe or elsewhere, at
        least in the near future.

        Chances are increasing that it will, of course, as global warming
        continues to worsen. Cities all over the Northern Hemisphere should
        be preparing right now for the potential for more unusually hot
        weather to possibly occur again next summer. If we don't get it,
        that would be great. But if we do get it, we had best be prepared
        for it. Otherwise, what happened in Paris this past August could be
        repeated, many times over, in many other cities. That
        would be catastrophic.

        Unfortunately, this problem is going to get much worse in time. That
        is what 999 scientist out of 1,000 will tell you if they are informed
        at all in this area. (The one remaining will have been paid by the
        fossil fuel/transportation/media industries to tell you otherwise.)

        Every year, global warming will get worse and worse. It has been
        already, and there is no reason to believe things will not continue
        to deteriorate in time.

        Yet most of the people in government, especially at the federal
        agency level in the U.S., will still say they fail to see the problem
        coming, or becoming that serious at any time soon. They are wrong.

        Some might think that, but they won't volunteer to talk about it,
        much less listen to someone else who tries to press on them the need
        to become concerned about it. Bob Dylan called it "killing the
        prophets".

        I know a man who has been working for the National Weather Service
        in this country for 25 years. He and I talked about this problem
        back in January 2000. It was clear to us then, after having read many
        of the studies and having specialized in climate related fields at
        the university, that this was going to be a huge, huge problem if
        society didn't start to act to reduce greenhouse gas emissions
        levels, almost right away. We could tell that then. At this same
        time, Dan Rather from CBS news did a program on his nightly news show
        that raised the issue of the growing problem with the warming
        climate. You could tell he was concerned. Even later outgoing
        president Clinton said it was going to be the most important issue of
        the century.

        The man I know started to raise this issue to his superiors at the
        National Weather Service about four years ago. They would have
        nothing to do with it. Global warming was not in their job
        description.

        So the guy send an email to people in Washington about it, about the
        end of January 2000 as I recall. That's when the sh-- hit the fan -
        but just for him, of course. The people in Washington who run the
        National Weather Service - a guy named Jack Kelly, (now deputy
        director of NOAA) & others - they wouldn't stand for it. Who does
        one of our employees think he is telling us in Washington we had
        better stop ignoring a big problem like global warming in our
        weather and flooding prediction policies? (they said.)

        Over time, they awarded the guy 3 separate disciplinary suspensions
        (without pay of course).

        With NOAA and the National Weather Service now under the "new"
        administration (Global Warmer Bush, etc.), things haven't gotten any
        better. In fact, they are worse now than ever. He is preparing now
        for reactionary measures again -- probably dismissal --
        because he went ahead and issued his own public news release, on a
        study he recently completed that provides increasing evidence of more
        rapid global warming now than ever before. He put out $500 of his own
        money to do it even. And now he's probably going to loose his job as
        well, only a couple of years away from retirement.

        I could go on with more details about this, but this forum doesn't
        seem to be the correct place to do that. It's just that it turns my
        stomach. Here's a guy who had no other motive than to speak up about
        an impending threat to all of us - to raise awareness of the problem
        so others would start to take the issue more seriously and work
        constructively to solve it. Yet the people he raises the problem to
        dump all over him for it. These are people in high places of our
        government, people who are paid generously with public money to
        protect the public's welfare in a matter as universally important to
        everyone as the climate and weather. Blame them -- not the
        scientists, messengers and profits for this problem. Those bums
        should have been thrown out before Bush took office. Just look what
        they have (not) done!

        --- In carfree_cities@yahoogroups.com, "prometeus57"
        <prometeus57@y...> wrote:
        > --- In carfree_cities@yahoogroups.com, "Mike Neuman"
        <mtneuman@j...>
        > wrote:
        > > 15,000 Parishaners died in August from the record setting heat-
        wave
        > > that reportedly took the lives of over 35,000 Europeans last
        summer.
        > > Unless Paris invests heavily in air conditioning (and supplying
        the
        > > electricity for it), I wouldn't advise anyone over 60 moving
        there
        >
        > What's the effect of Paris' thousands of trees? Can more be
        planted /
        > the buildings be greened somehow?
      • Jym Dyer
        ... =v= Deciduous trees shade nearby buildings in the summer and let sunlight shine through in the winter. It s a good idea to plant more. I like the green
        Message 3 of 23 , Nov 7, 2003
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          > What's the effect of Paris' thousands of trees? Can more
          > be planted / the buildings be greened somehow?

          =v= Deciduous trees shade nearby buildings in the summer and let
          sunlight shine through in the winter. It's a good idea to plant
          more. I like the "green roofs" approach, as well.

          =v= And oh yeah, gotta stop all these cars from heating up the
          planet in the first place.
          <_Jym_>
        • Bijan Soleymani
          ... I realize that the world is probably getting warmer, but I ve been to Paris twice (both times in the summer) and have to say that the weather was much
          Message 4 of 23 , Nov 7, 2003
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            "Mike Neuman" <mtneuman@...> writes:

            > 15,000 Parishaners died in August from the record setting heat-wave
            > that reportedly took the lives of over 35,000 Europeans last summer.
            > Unless Paris invests heavily in air conditioning (and supplying the
            > electricity for it), I wouldn't advise anyone over 60 moving there
            > any time soon. Thanks to the U.S. and other heavy fossil fuel
            > burning countries of the world, the possibility of more of these
            > tragedies happening in the world will grow with each passing year,
            > especially in cities vulnerable to "heat island" effects.

            I realize that the world is probably getting warmer, but I've been to
            Paris twice (both times in the summer) and have to say that the
            weather was much better (cooler) than the weather where I live. And
            that happens to be Montreal, Canada :) Maybe it's less humid...

            Bijan
            --
            Bijan Soleymani <bijan@...>
            http://www.crasseux.com
          • Bijan Soleymani
            ... They could charge the residents for the convenience of living on their development. This is called rent. Another option is selling the housing units to the
            Message 5 of 23 , Nov 7, 2003
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              "mauk_mcamuk" <mauk2@...> writes:

              >> >2) Building a city from scratch requires a formidable pile of
              > capital.
              >>
              >> So does any other development project; billion-dollar projects are
              >> now routine. The banks have the money; what's required is a
              > developer
              >> who believes in the idea and can convince a bank to fund it. This is
              >> well within the realm of possibility.
              >>
              >
              > Have you done any work on how much capital it would take? more
              > importantly, how would you pay that capital back? Taxes on
              > residents?

              They could charge the residents for the convenience of living on their
              development. This is called rent. Another option is selling the
              housing units to the residents and having the banks lend them the
              money: mortgage. :)

              The problem isn't that there is no money to be made in carfree cities,
              but that it's easier for developpers to build suburban sprawl. It's
              easy, it's standardized, doesn't require as much capital, etc.

              Bijan
              --
              Bijan Soleymani <bijan@...>
              http://www.crasseux.com
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