Todd Litman is the executive director of the Victoria Transport Policy Institute.
As planners, one of our roles is to help stretch the scope of what is considered possible. For example, between 1950 and 2000 most development was highly automobile-dependent, based on the assumption that almost all travel would be by personal automobile and other modes were relatively unimportant. This pattern is so well established that many people have difficulty imagining anything different. It is useful to help people understand the full range of options available, from automobile dependency to carfree communities.
Monday, February 8, 2010 - 9:46am PST
Let me wade into an ongoing debate among fellow Planetizen bloggers Samuel Staley and Michael Lewyn concerning the meanings of accessibility and mobility, and their implications for transportation and land use policy.
Monday, February 1, 2010 - 6:03am PST
Last week I attended the Transportation Research Boards (TRB) 89th annual meeting, which attracted approximately 10,000 transportation professionals from around the globe to Washington DC. More than 2,000 papers were presented at more than 700 sessions, plus several hundred committee meetings took place. Let me share some highlights.
Monday, January 18, 2010 - 6:15am PST
Thursday, December 17, 2009 - 8:56am PST
Thursday, December 10, 2009 - 10:23am PST
Much of my work involves developing transportation demand management and smart growth policies which improve travel options (walking, cycling, public transit, carsharing, etc.), reform pricing and transport planning to encourage travelers to choose the most efficient mode for each trip, and create more accessible, multi-modal communities.
Monday, November 16, 2009 - 8:04am PST
Monday, November 2, 2009 - 8:54am PST
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