Towards Carfree Cities

I spent last week in Portland covering the Towards Carfree Cities conference for the Bay Guardian. Click here for links to my daily reports.

There’s no need to repeat here what I’ve been saying there, except to emphasize the importance of this growing movement. Simply put, U.S. cities mathematically can’t continue growing as they have. There isn’t enough space to handle the expected population increase without a far higher percentage of people going carfree, and that means committing now to creating the infrastructure for more transit users, pedestrians, and bicyclists.

I’m committed to helping the carfree movement get the word out, convinced that once the people and their elected leaders understand the situation we’re facing, the transformation of our cities in inevitable. But we can either start doing it now and create the deliberate, orderly transition that cities around the world have undergone, or we can cling to our fantasies of easy automobility and experience a more chaotic shift. As a progressive, I’d prefer the former.