Author Topic: Dealing with congestion  (Read 6199 times)

Dealing with congestion
« on: January 27, 2019, 09:24:35 am »
I received a survey this week from our local candidate hoping to become the next conservative mp. We currently have a labour mp but that only changed in the last general election (I didn't vote for either party).

The survey was all about congestion and what did I think about improving parking, fixing potholes, bus and train services in and out of the town, the building of a new bypass, what would make a difference locally to me and my journeys etc.

No where, not once was there any mention of cycling and walking provision or improving the air quality by reducing traffic. It was entirely about 'me and my car'.

At every opportunity I added comments about poor cycle lanes and highlighted not everyone has to drive somewhere.

You never know he might actually read it......
Duct tape is magic and should be worshipped

diapsaon0

  • Advena ego sum in terra
Re: Dealing with congestion
« Reply #1 on: January 27, 2019, 05:07:13 pm »
You'll be lucky!
Advena ego sum in Terra

Re: Dealing with congestion
« Reply #2 on: January 27, 2019, 05:34:43 pm »
Make driving short distances as inconvenient as possible whilst improving cycling and walking provision will clear congestion no end.

ian

  • fatuously disingenuous
    • The Suburban Survival Guide
Re: Dealing with congestion
« Reply #3 on: January 27, 2019, 05:37:11 pm »
Sadly, people do drive everywhere and those of us that don't are in a very small minority.

Reading about two shops closing in our local town centre, the usual about 'there's no parking' came up, which is always bizarre, because there's lots of parking and its even free, but yes, you would have to walk maybe two entire minutes. There is actual parking on both sides of the high street, of course, but that's all the space there is. If your business is dependent on somehow abrogating the physical laws of the universe and manipulating time and space to allow several cars to park simultaneous in the same place, well, I admire your optimism. I'm not sure, to be honest, that people get up in the morning and decide to drive to the local town centre just to buy a sausage roll either.

The irony, of course, is that car-culture is one of the key things killing local high streets. I think it says something that people just don't get that, there's a certain blindness.
!nataS pihsroW

Re: Dealing with congestion
« Reply #4 on: January 27, 2019, 06:51:38 pm »
Rely on parliament  , not me  . I use  sinex.  O:-)O:-) ;)
In my ideal world only emergency services and suppliers for shops would be able to use motorised transport. Disabled people would have electric mobility available.  Even if we had a rule of one car per family congestion would largely disappear.
One can dream  :)
the slower you go the more you see

Re: Dealing with congestion
« Reply #5 on: January 27, 2019, 07:16:34 pm »
Wouldn't even need to be that radical. Simply ban (overnight) parking on the road. If you want a car, you need to either own or rent enough land to keep it on.
It is what it is. It's not what it's not, so it must be what it is.

Re: Dealing with congestion
« Reply #6 on: January 27, 2019, 07:22:38 pm »
In my ideal world only emergency services and suppliers for shops would be able to use motorised transport. Disabled people would have electric mobility available. 
There's a massive supply chain in the manufacturing and maintaing of motor vehicles who'd end up
unemployed. There'd also be thousands of people in rural areas who'd also be disadvantaged
in your world.

Re: Dealing with congestion
« Reply #7 on: January 27, 2019, 07:39:09 pm »
Many people would be freed from the burden of work, you mean.

We are talking about an *ideal* world.

Re: Dealing with congestion
« Reply #8 on: January 27, 2019, 08:16:28 pm »
Wouldn't even need to be that radical. Simply ban (overnight) parking on the road. If you want a car, you need to either own or rent enough land to keep it on.
Although I'm not sure I'd support this (my son parks on the road outside our house for a start), I was fascinated by the reference in "Roads Were Not Made for Cars" to the early debates about street parking. Highways are, in law, as I understand it, for the passage to and forth of the public (or words to that effect). Use of vehicles is no more than a reasonable way of achieving that - it's the public, not the vehicles, that the roads are for. So, parking those vehicles is outside the intended purpose of roads, and owners of horses and carts were expected to meet Ben T's requirement above.

In the age of the motor vehicle, enforcing this quickly became impracticable, and had questionable public support.

hellymedic

  • Just do it!
Re: Dealing with congestion
« Reply #9 on: January 27, 2019, 08:29:07 pm »
The legal requirement for parked cars to be lit when parked on the road reduced the desire to store parked cars there. On street parking really took off after this was lifted.

Re: Dealing with congestion
« Reply #10 on: January 27, 2019, 10:05:32 pm »
In Japan you must have off-street parking for a full-size car (not mini-cars), and it is illegal to park in the road anywhere, anytime. Too late to introduce that retrospectively here I fear, and it hasn't prevented congestion in Japan. But bikes are used extensively for utility purposes, and urban areas are well-served by rail. Rural lines are closing, partly due to depopulation leaving just the elderly.

Re: Dealing with congestion
« Reply #11 on: January 28, 2019, 05:50:54 am »
Many people would be freed from the burden of work, you mean.
....and have to rely on unemployment benefit. How will that be funded in an ideal world.
Oh, I know, money trees. :-D

Jaded

  • The Codfather
  • Formerly known as Jaded
Re: Dealing with congestion
« Reply #12 on: January 28, 2019, 07:44:49 am »
Without cars we’d have fewer people anyway.
If you don't like your democracy, vote against it.

Re: Dealing with congestion
« Reply #13 on: January 28, 2019, 08:32:08 am »
In Japan you must have off-street parking for a full-size car (not mini-cars), and it is illegal to park in the road anywhere, anytime.

I like the 'Parking Towers' every few blocks.

ian

  • fatuously disingenuous
    • The Suburban Survival Guide
Re: Dealing with congestion
« Reply #14 on: January 28, 2019, 10:41:08 am »
Managing on-street parking would certainly help mitigate the current predicament (not to mention make the urban environment far better and more appealing – which makes it more likely people will walk and cycle). At a minimum, all vehicles should be safely parked on the road. There should be zero tolerance for pavement (and other forms of already illegal) parking. It's not just annoying, it's dangerous. If we let people park wherever they want, they'll just keep acquiring more cars, and they won't be small cars, because excessive parking optimism seems to be an actual pathology that many drivers suffer. If you have difficulty parking your current car, why not buy a bigger one. Then write to the council to complain about the parking situation.

Frankly, the entire industry based around cars is a con that just sucks money out of people and governments. It's tax money that pays for roads and the costs of the sprawl they facilitate (which is orders of magnitude higher than direct costs), for the massive healthcare needs (direct medical interventions each year, plus the impact of air and noise pollution etc.), and direct corporate welfare to the car manufacturers. Not to mention, that new cars are now literally debt-vehicles for a growing financial sector. And of course, the costs are paid primarily by us – a society structured so we have to have multi-car households so we can hold jobs that enable us to maintain multiple cars. And the corollaries roll downhill from there. It's not the people sitting in the cars that benefit from any this. They don't even get the joys of an open road that the adverts promised. They get a queue for the Tesco carpark and a rapidly expanding gut.

Cars aren't evil – we have one – but a society entirely based around motor vehicles is a sickly one.
!nataS pihsroW

mattc

  • n.b. have grown beard since photo taken
    • Didcot Audaxes
Re: Dealing with congestion
« Reply #15 on: January 28, 2019, 01:14:48 pm »
Many people would be freed from the burden of work, you mean.
....and have to rely on unemployment benefit. How will that be funded in an ideal world.
Oh, I know, money trees. :-D
You could start a war - they're good for jobs (and unemployment figures).
Has never ridden RAAM
---------
No.11  Because of the great host of those who dislike the least appearance of "swank " when they travel the roads and lanes. - From Kuklos' 39 Articles

Re: Dealing with congestion
« Reply #16 on: January 28, 2019, 01:22:03 pm »
I have three cars. My father owns four - of those seven cars four of them were built before 1980 and two others are the same (sort of) manufacturer which is now defunct. All of the cars are parked off the public road and most of them do <2500 miles per year.

I'm a petrol head, motorsport enthusiast and competitor and I'm completely and utterly sick of the motor industry for the reasons Ian highlights and the misery that comes with every day driving.

Driving, even 23 years ago when I passed my test was fun, I enjoyed going places in Mums car and then the joy and freedom that came with saving up and buying my first actual car (which replaced the 1978 MGB I never drove). Insurance was relatively expensive, tax was quite expensive and petrol wasn't cheap but I would get in my car just for he fun of driving it. I went to university and studied a Motor Engineering degree where I met a bunch of like minded people who introduced me to the muddy world of Rallying, a sport I still occasionally compete in.

All this time I've also ridden bikes and the more often I do it the more I realise how pointless driving is. I am conflicted because of the reasons above but I actually hate it. I want congestion eased to make driving fun again, for those that want to drive, not those that the motor industry and the governments they fund tell them it's the only option they have.

And before you ask an electric car is on my wish list but my main car is only at 135,000 miles so why should I change it :)
Duct tape is magic and should be worshipped

ian

  • fatuously disingenuous
    • The Suburban Survival Guide
Re: Dealing with congestion
« Reply #17 on: January 28, 2019, 01:40:55 pm »
Our car does <1000 miles a year (much to the amusement of the garage that does the MOT). It's there if we need it, but we don't rely on it, and it wouldn't significantly impact on our lives if we didn't have it. It's quite liberating not to be dependent on two cars, most of the people we know are effectively wedded to their cars, and everything they do involves a default car journey, worries about parking etc. If they enjoy the 'freedom' of car ownership, they don't show it. That and the expense, because what car you drive is apparently most people's measure of status.

When we last moved we did consider moving further afield, but it was the reliance on cars that put us off.

I learned to drive in the US, where there really isn't an option not to drive unless you're in NYC. While it was fun at first, after a while it got tedious that every single task involved in picking up your car keys, but of course that's the expectation if you're living in North America.
!nataS pihsroW

Re: Dealing with congestion
« Reply #18 on: January 28, 2019, 01:49:23 pm »
That and the expense, because what car you drive is apparently most people's measure of status.


My brother-in-law gets visibly agitated by the sight of my 12 year old, rarely clean, smokey old estate. He hates 'bloody cyclists' at the best of times, but that I would rather spend my money on them instead of upgrading my motor is the source of great confusion/frustration for him as evidenced by him remarking on it every time I see him.

As a matter of principle, I am now committed to running this one into the ground, if only to annoy him.

Re: Dealing with congestion
« Reply #19 on: January 28, 2019, 01:52:54 pm »
That and the expense, because what car you drive is apparently most people's measure of status.

Which, considering most cars are purchased on credit or lease schemes is even more stupid.
Duct tape is magic and should be worshipped

arabella

  • no se porque yo no lo se
Re: Dealing with congestion
« Reply #20 on: January 28, 2019, 01:55:50 pm »
I've yet to elicit a sensible response to the question as to why folks pay £x/month for a car to sit in a traffic jam, rather than progressing past it on a push bike.
I just hire a car/van when required.  Cheaper than having a car full time by my calcs.
Our road is lovely when empty of nose-to-tail with parked cars (on the pavement, so I walk in the road, which isn't popular with said motorists ...)
In the dark, all views are the same.

Re: Dealing with congestion
« Reply #21 on: January 28, 2019, 01:59:01 pm »
....and have to rely on unemployment benefit. How will that be funded in an ideal world.
Oh, I know, money trees. :-D
Who needs money when the robots provide for our every need?

ian

  • fatuously disingenuous
    • The Suburban Survival Guide
Re: Dealing with congestion
« Reply #22 on: January 28, 2019, 02:33:01 pm »
That and the expense, because what car you drive is apparently most people's measure of status.

Which, considering most cars are purchased on credit or lease schemes is even more stupid.

Yes, it's a growing issue, basically, new cars are now often (mostly?) just another excuse for generating debt for the finance industry to sell derivatives off the back of. That worked out so well for mortgages, too.

I can appreciate that some people like and are interested in cars, but I do wonder about the average person just worried that other people may think of them based on the car they drive. I know people who I'm quite sure earning far less than my wife and I do, have a couple of kids, a large mortgage, and still manage to produce a pair of expensive cars on the driveway. I guess they have a lot more appetite for debt than we do. We run a 12-year-old Ford Ka, bought new and thus far only needed a new battery and set of replacement tires with the last MOT – once something expensive breaks, we'll probably buy whatever the cheapest electric car is at the time. Though I'm hoping for a few more years. Our last car was a VW Golf that we sold at the grand age of 18 to someone who wanted something to learn in (we were hardly using it, it tended to dramatically overheat in stop-start traffic, and parking where we lived in Shepherd's Bush wasn't worth the effort).
!nataS pihsroW

Re: Dealing with congestion
« Reply #23 on: January 28, 2019, 09:01:37 pm »
I'm 30, never learned to drive, never needed too, still don't.

If you live in a city there's no point in owning/running a car yet everyone I work with is paying off massive loans so they can have a nice new shiny toy.

I work with a 24 year old who has a nice looking Audi. His dad bought a nicer model Audi and he won't shut up about how he needs a newer/flasher car because he's embarrassed that his dads got a nicer one. I don't understand how he affords the insurance let alone the finance...

Re: Dealing with congestion
« Reply #24 on: January 28, 2019, 09:19:49 pm »
There is a lot to recommend the low cost life style.  The lower your outgoings, the more relaxed you can be about the job you do.  Too much debt and you need a suitably stressful job just to service it.