Los Angeles magazine: “How to get food, ritual display, territorial dominance—all these things are part of parking, and we’ve assigned it to the most primitive part of the brain that makes snap fight-or-flight decisions. Our mental capacities just bottom out when we talk about parking.”
Green Left Weekly: “There is no such thing as a green car… Unsustainable would barely describe the car’s environmental failure if the rest of the world were to adopt US patterns of car ownership and driving behaviour. So why is the car such a protected species, culturally celebrated and immune from radical policy review? Because, the authors say, the car is integral to the capitalist economy and thus any criticism of the car is taboo. Since 1925, the automotive industry has been the leading sector of the US economy, and, of the world’s 10 largest corporations, three are car manufacturers and six are oil companies.”
NYTimes: “Around Löwenplatz, one of Zurich’s busiest squares, cars are now banned on many blocks. Where permitted, their speed is limited to a snail’s pace so that crosswalks and crossing signs can be removed entirely, giving people on foot the right to cross anywhere they like at any time.”
As he stood watching a few cars inch through a mass of bicycles and pedestrians, the city’s chief traffic planner, Andy Fellmann, smiled. “Driving is a stop-and-go experience,” he said. “That’s what we like! Our goal is to reconquer public space for pedestrians, not to make it easy for drivers.”
INFRASTRUCTURIST: “They’re the holy grail of transportation engineering: streets and highways specifically designed to encourage automobilists to drive less quickly, reducing the rates of passenger fatalities and generally encouraging a safer urban environment. And now it appears they just might work: New research from the University of Connecticut suggests that minor reductions in vehicle speed are possible through changes in the street environment.
Streetsblog: “Even when the price of parking is free, it’s far from free.” The resulting congestion impedes the effectiveness of transit. Traffic volumes and double-parking make bicycling less pleasant and more dangerous. Walkable environments give way to curb cuts, dead walls, and land-devouring parking facilities that spread destinations farther apart.
Slate Magazine: “Meanwhile, back in Portland, as bicycle parking gets more respect, another bastion of the automobile landscape is getting a makeover: access, and perhaps even special lanes, for bicycles at the drive-throughs of fast-food joints.”
Worldchanging: “When does a Prius have the same environmental impact as a Hummer? The 95 percent of the time it’s parked. Most people don’t spend time thinking about parking spaces unless they’re looking for one. But these 9′ by 18′ rectangles of urban real estate have a vast impact on North American communities. They affect the economy, land use patterns, the design of cities and even individual lifestyles.”