Bailout Should Transform Detroit into 'Transportmaker'

As the federal government prepares to bail out the flailing U.S. automotive industry, it should think about changing the face of the industry from carmaker to "transportmaker", according to Robert Goodman.

"The Obama administration should ask the companies, as a condition of financial assistance, to begin shifting from being just automakers to becoming innovative 'transportmakers.' As Barack Obama's new chief of staff, Rahm Emanuel, recently said: 'You don't ever want a crisis to go to waste. It's an opportunity to do important things you would otherwise avoid.'"

"As transportmakers, the companies could produce vehicles for high-speed train and bus systems that would improve our travel options, reduce global warming, conserve energy, minimize accidents and generally improve the way we live."

"Now, the auto industry is asking for government money that promises, even with more fuel-efficient cars, to give us more of the same. Instead of supporting companies that want to put as many cars on the road as possible, we need a transformational strategy."

"As part of its loan package, the government should insist on the development of "transportmaker business plans" from the car companies, with specific timelines for developing more fuel-efficient cars. The companies should also provide detailed plans to transform some of their factories into research and manufacturing centers for the development of light-rail cars and high-speed trains and buses."

Thanks to Streetsblog

Full Story: Have You Driven a Bus or a Train Lately?


Prepare for the AICP* Exam

Join the thousands of students who have utilized the Planetizen AICP* Exam Preparation Class to prepare for the American Planning Association's AICP* exam.
Starting at $245
Book cover of the Guide to Graduate Planning Programs 4th Edition

Thinking about Grad School?

The Planetizen Guide to Graduate Urban Planning Programs is the only comprehensive ranking and listing of graduate urban planning programs available.
Starting at $24.95
Book cover of Unsprawl

Unsprawl: Remixing Spaces as Places

Explore visionary, controversial and ultimately successful strategies for building people-centered places.
Starting at $12.95

City Coasters

Hand-drawn engraved maps of your favorite neighborhoods are divided up across 4 coasters making each one unique.