Slower speeds are a key to safer cities and better air

   May 2017, World Resources Institute Crowded streets in Bangkok. Photo by Bernard Spragg/Flickr This week is UN Global Road Safety Week, focused on the theme “Slow Down, Save Lives.” WRI works to make cities around the world safer and more sustainable by implementing street design and regulations that reduce vehicle speeds while supporting walking and cycling. There is a growing …

Analyzing Bike Collisions Doesn’t Tell the Whole Story – you need near misses too

By Kelsey Thomas, Next City, 9 May 2017 City planners often decide which intersections and roads get safety improvements based on analysis of crash data, but according to a new study, that method may be missing something. A look at “near-miss incidents” by Houston-based Kinder Institute for Urban Research reveals that some streets in critical need of improvement could be …

Drivers with smartphones are using them during 88% of the trips they make

By James Ayre, Clean Technica, 24 April 2017 Auto drivers that own smartphones use them during around 88% of the trips they take, going by data collected by the firm Zendrive. Zendrive uses the sensors found in smartphones to analyze driving behavior — so, while the findings are probably broadly true, there are caveats that go with them. Roughly 77% of …

Taking a “Vision Zero” approach to reducing fatalities for those walking and bicycling — speed reduction is key

BY DANIEL C. VOCK | FEBRUARY 2017 |  Originally published in Governing Magazine (David Kidd) Shirley Gonzales made no secret of her views on transportation when she ran for the San Antonio City Council in 2013. She laid them out in her answer to a questionnaire: “pedestrians first, followed by cycling, public transportation and private automobiles, in that order.” Gonzales promoted …

Suburbs increasingly view their auto-centric sprawl as a health hazard

By Katherine Shaver December 28, 2016, from the Washington Post Planners in Prince George’s County have talked for years about reshaping communities to help residents fetch a gallon of milk via a walk or bicycle ride, rather than add to stifling traffic congestion by having to drive. But planners say they’re increasingly treating the Maryland county’s low-density, auto-dependent design as …

Activists building DIY bikelanes and improving safety

Meet the shadowy group that’s arguably outpacing San Francisco when it comes to protected bike lanes.  By JOHN METCALFE cross-posted from City Lab, Dec 23, 2016SFMTrA When it comes to bike lanes in San Francisco, there’s SFMTA—the official transit agency—and then there’s the thorn in its side known as SMFTrA. Their names may look the same at first glance, but don’t be …

Heat has demonstrable effects on performance and productivity

Excerpted from Nick Kristoff, NYTimes A new working paper by Jisung Park, a Ph.D. student in economics at Harvard, compared the performances of New York City students on 4.6 million exams with the day’s temperature. He found that students taking a New York State Regents exam on a 90-degree day have a 12 percent greater chance of failing than when …

What is the cost of half of refugee children not being in school, when 90%+ were attending before climate, drought, famine and other disruptions in their countries?

New York Times, 16 Sept 2016 The report said only 50 percent of refugee children have access to primary education, compared with a global average of more than 90 percent. As children grow older the gap widens — 22 percent of refugee adolescents attend secondary school, compared with the global average of 84 percent. One percent of refugees attend college, …

“Driving a car will be illegal by 2030”

Cross-posted from Wired Magazine Our economy will be severely impacted as millions of truck/lorry drivers, cabbies and delivery people are put out of work. In this era of endless innovation, humanity’s century-long relationship with the automobile is about to be permanently disrupted. The reason has nothing to do with millennials, Uber or improvements in mass transport. Driving should and will …