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DIY traffic calming in Beech Croft Road, Oxford

9 Jul

Here is an encouraging story about what can be achieved by a community that works together to make changes in their street.

DIY traffic calming

Here is a report on the BBC about it.

And bizarre a visit by Richard Hammond of Top Gear in the mix. I am told that Richard Hammond had no idea what was in store for him and that the residents had no idea who the presenter was going to be.

You can read more about the project on their blog, on the associated ‘road witch’ blog and also in a report by Oxford city Council. The project was the first of a number of schemes supported by the Sustrans DIY Streets project.

Incidentally… here is a great story with loads of pictures about the terrible sate the street was in for pedestrians some time back. (added following comment below – thanks).

Beech Croft Road some time earlier

Age Scotland

15 Jun

There is a great new blog post on the Age Scotland blog asking ‘why isn’t pavement parking illegal?‘. A fair and direct question that deserves an answer! I have always believed that if we will only succeed in reclaiming our pavements when both the young and the old stand up together and ask for them back loudly and clearly! Here is a short video from Age Scotland pointing out the inconvenience pavement parking causes to people in mobility buggies.

I am pleased to see that the RNIB are also on the case. Here is a partially-signed RNIB campaigner in Cirencester explaining the campaign he is running.

On the subject of youtube, this is a great way of spreading the message. Here are a few more examples of how to use video to get the message across.

Of course, the issue is not a new one. Here is a public information film on the subject which must date from the 1970s.

Parking Douche!

30 May

Check out Parking Douche and watch their video here which explains how it all works:

Pavement parking sorted :)

28 Dec

Well here’s an approach to pavement parking that will definitely get the attention of the police :)

 

Rembering the dead on London’s roads

12 Nov

Thank you to the hundreds of cyclists who took part in the Tour du danger today to highlight a number of London’s most dangerous junctions and put pressure on the Mayor and on TfL to do some serious work on them.

Here are some maps showing where people are have been getting killed and injured in recent years. The first one shows deaths and injuries from traffic crashes between 2000 and 2010, the second for 2010 only and the next one for 2009 and the final one for 2000. Areas of blue indicate were pedestrians are getting injured and killed, red shows the high risk areas for cyclists. Purple is for motorcyclists and tan/green for vehicle occupants. Click on the images to see them full size.

Road casualties in Central London 2000-2010

Road casualties in Central London 2010

Road casualties in Central London 2009

Road Casualties in Central London 2000

These maps appear to show that fatalities amongst vehicle occupants has fallen from 17 in 2000 to one in 2009 and then zero in 2010. For cyclists the trend is apparently going the other way (up from four in 2000 to eight in 2009 and also in 2010). Motorcyclist fatalities are up from 0 in 2000 to 6 in 2010, pedestrians falling significantly. Do however be aware that this map only shows one fatality blob for crashes with multiple fatalities (which may include multiple modes). I will do some more work on this in the coming week and the figures may then need to be adjusted upwards.

Based on Stats19 road casualty data. See ‘Reported Road Casualties Great Britain‘ for more details.

Ig nobel peace award to car crushing mayor!

30 Sep

Arturas Zuokas, the mayor of Vilnius, Lithuania has been awarded an Ig Nobel peace prize for demonstrating how the problem of illegally parked luxury cars can be solved by destroying them with a military tank.

Ig Nobel Peace prize 2011

For those who missed it, here is the stunt that led to the award.

Is this just a bit of fun? Personally I think it is another signal that people all around the worlds are getting impatient with the private car. Attitudes are changing. I am reminded that Ken Livingston was given an award for ‘policy innovation’ by Scientific American in 2003 after he introduced the congestion charge to London.

Anyone who thinks the private car is secure in out cities should take notice of what William Clay Ford, great-grandson of Henry Ford and the current executive chairman of the Ford Motor Company is thinking. In 2000 at a Greenpeace business conference in London he said that “The day will come when the notion of car ownership becomes antiquated. If you live in a city, you don’t need to own a car” and went on to explain how Ford would reposition itself as a ‘purveyor of mobility’ and would own the vehicles and make them available to people when they need access to them. Ford, good to their word recently went into partnership with Zipcar offering cars on American university campuses for hire by the hour.

Inspiration from Park(ing) day 2011

17 Sep

Inspiration from around on world from Park(ing) day 2011 which took place yesterday when people all over the world reclaim parking meters for social and convivial purposes. Here are a few photos and a great piece of artwork from the people who created the event a few years ago. Great to see a neat little park hitting London’s streets with help from ibuyeco and the Woodland Trust.

Parking day hits London's streets (copyright image)

Parking day 2011 - barber's shop

Enjoy the day! (copyright image)

Save the day - Rebar

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