Planetizen Managing Editor James Brasuell tries to predict the big ideas and trends that will dominate the discussion about the future of land use, planning, and development in the first year of the new decade.
Cars and vehicle emissions are undoubtedly central to the climate change problem. The solution, however, might not be cleaner vehicles but rather a drastic change in our relationship to automobiles and driving.
The U.S. Department of Transportation this week announced $900 million in BUILD grant funding for transportation projects around the country, supporting a similar focus on rural and highway projects as in previous rounds of spending.
A new task force formed in Portland, Oregon will consider ways to make automobile use more expensive, including parking pricing, area and time-based fees, fleet charges, road user charges, cordons, and freeway pricing.
Advocates in New York City, San Francisco, and Seattle are pushing for more transit and pedestrian priority, and less car-centric streets, as a wave of high-profile projects capture national attention.
Clearly, the American love affair with the automobile is far from over, despite lessons from the recession, dire environmental warnings, plummeting traffic safety, or the wishful thinking of tech companies.