Re: [carfree_cities] Elevators
- On Jul 3, 2005, at 6:36 AM, Debra Efroymson wrote:
> Cars, elevators--same story, isn't it? We are killingI agree with the sentiment, but this comparison is flawed. First, I
> ourselves (lack of exercise) and our environment by
> mechanizing everything, when what we--and our
> environment--need is for us to expend more personal
> energy and less carbon-based energy.
> Anima (from elevator-lite Dhaka)
would remind you of the growing segment of the population that is
unable to climb stairs. I'm not sure what disabled people do in Dhaka,
but here in the U.S., the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was a
huge victory for people living in a world largely unaccessible to them
because of physical barriers like steps. Surely we wouldn't classify
these people as "lazy" because they use elevators. But I suppose it is
easy to forget about them.
Also, an elevator can be a very handy thing to someone who uses
alternative transportation. For instance, cycling becomes much more
attractive if you don't have to lug your bike up three flights of
stairs every time you get home. And multi-modal trips, such as taking
your bike on the train, are facilitated by elevators in stations as
well. And yes, there are people who are able to ride a bike but not
able to carry it up stairs.
I suppose some of the same arguments about providing access to the
disabled could also be used to justify automobile usage. But I don't
see this as a problem. There are always going to be some people who
are going to need cars. Many of you may know about a woman named
Shryley on the Car-Free list who has a severely disabled child.
Despite incredible efforts to find a way to take her child to numerous
doctors' offices by bike or transit, she reluctantly resorts to using a
car. The fact that she feels guilty about it is admirable, but not
very helpful. I don't bring this up to say that our cause in promoting
car-free cities is unworthy, rather to remind us that we should not get
so caught up in it that we lose sight of an equally worthy goal, which
is to provide equitable access to all people.
Also, as others have brought up, elevators use very little energy
compared to automobiles. If the goal is to promote energy saving,
you'll get a lot more mileage by reducing car usage even a little bit,
or even by promoting low-energy fluorescent light-bulbs, than by
getting rid of elevators.
- Winding up the elevator discussion, Will Stewart said:
>I assume you are talking about flats as the context for the following,Well, no, TWO flats per floor, so they have through ventilation
> where an elevator would service 3 floors above the ground floor, and
>perhaps 4 units per floor at each elevator stop.
and some light from both ends.
>Plus, the human factor of modest scale and a courtyard are also veryoh, yes
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J.H. Crawford Carfree Cities