Todd Litman is the executive director of the Victoria Transport Policy Institute.
To celebrate an important victory a winning team sometimes parades around the arena with their coach on their shoulders as the fans cheer in adulation. Planners sometimes deserve similar treatment! For example, regardless of who wins the 2010 FIFA World Cup to be held in South Africa June and July 2010, the real victor will be residents of the four cities where matches will be held, who gain an efficient new public transportation system as a long-term legacy. Everybody wins!
Monday, October 26, 2009 - 5:22am PDT
A few days ago I posted a blog that discussed the concept of Universal Design (transportation facilities designed to accommodate all possible users, including those with disabilities and other special needs) and the value it provides to individuals and communities. One way to approach this issue is to define the design vehicle for pedestrian facilities.
Thursday, October 15, 2009 - 10:13am PDT
I spent the last week teaching a professional development course for young planners in Buenos Aries, Argentina. It’s been a wonderful experience – my students are smart and enthusiastic, and Buenos Aries is a vibrant city with old-world charm. The buildings, plazas and old statues are beautiful and dignified, although a little frayed around the edges.
Monday, October 12, 2009 - 8:23am PDT
I recently read President Obama’s autobiography, “Dreams From My Father.” It is well written and insightful. Obama uses personal stories to explore issues of identity, race, class, politics, power, and what it means to be ‘United Statesian.’ Let me share some observations about transportation and land use planning issues mentioned in the book.
Monday, September 28, 2009 - 5:24am PDT
Should society encourage parents to drive children to school rather than walk or bicycle? Should our transportation policies favor driving over walking, cycling, ridesharing, public transit and telecommuting? Probably not. There is no logical reason to favor automobile travel over other forms of accessibility, and there are lots of good reasons to favor efficient modes, so for example, schools spend at least as much to accommodate a walking or cycling trip as an automobile trip, and transportation agencies and employers spend at least as much to improve ridesharing and public transit commuting as automobile commuting.
Thursday, September 17, 2009 - 9:53am PDT
Location, location, location. Choosing a smart home location can help households become healthy, wealthy and wise, since it affects residents’ physical activity levels, long-term financial burdens and opportunities for education and social interaction.
Wednesday, September 2, 2009 - 10:49pm PDT
Thursday, August 20, 2009 - 5:50am PDT
The new report, Moving Cooler: Transportation Strategies to Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions, written by Cambridge Systematics and sponsored by a variety of organizations, identifies several dozen transportation climate change emission reduction strategies, including improvements to efficient modes (walking, cycling and public transit), pricing reforms and smart growth land use policies.
Thursday, July 30, 2009 - 10:52am PDT
The current U.S. healthcare reform proposal is often described as costing a trillion dollars. That will make it difficult to pass. However, the same program could legitimately be described as costing residents just cents per day (or, “less than a cup of coffee”), which would enhance its chance of success (a trillion dollars over ten years is $100 billion annually, about $320 annually per capita, or less than $1 per day, which can legitimately be called “cents per day”).
Monday, July 27, 2009 - 8:34am PDT
Planning issues are often considered to be conflicts between the interests of different groups, such as neighborhood residents versus developers, or motorist versus transit users. But planning concerns the future, so it often consists of a conflict between the interests of our current and future selves.
Thursday, June 25, 2009 - 4:36am PDT