Transportation for livable cities

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Center for Urban Policy Research (CUPR Press), 1999 - Political Science - 352 pages
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The era of projects aimed at maximiing vehicular travel is being replaced by the broader goal of achieving livable cities: economically efficient, socially sound, and environmentally sustainable. This book explores the complex relationship between transportation and the character of cities and met­ropolitan regions.

Vukan R. Vuchic, UPS Foundation Professor of Trans­portation Engineering at the University of Pennsylvania, applies his extensive experi­ence in urban transportation systems and policies to present a systematic review of trans­portation modes. He discusses the consequences of excessive automobile dependence and shows that the most livable cities worldwide have intermodal systems that balance highway and public transit modes while providing for pedestrians, bicyclists, and paratransit.

Vuchic integrates theoretical analyses of transportation systems with recommendations for their practical application. He describes measures that can be considered in improving the urban environment: transit incentives and automobile disincentives, congestion pricing, HOV lanes, and auto-restricted ones. The complex, often misunderstood, and political issues surrounding costs, charges, and subsidies— direct and hidden—inherent in alternative transportation systems are discussed and illustrated graphically. Photographs from cities around the world depict visually the compelling case that the author makes for less reliance on private auto­mobile travel and greater consideration of other modes.

This book defines the policies necessary for achieving livable cities for future generations: the effective implemen­tation of integrated intermodal transportation systems. Students, city and transportation planners, metropolitan plan­ning organiations, and policymakers at all levels will find the recommendations in this book important and relevant.

What makes a city eminently livable? Americans return from travel abroad charmed by the pedestrian boulevards of cities like Brussels, Copenhagen, and Munich. City strollers there linger and en joy the pedestrian-only streets and plaas that characterie these special places. In many European cities, excellent networks of public transportation make it unnecessary for residents to own, or visitors to rent, a car.

Vukan R. Vuchic, who holds an endowed chair in transportation engineering at the University of Pennsylvania, maintains that U.S. cities should strive to attain the design and transportation planning achievements of other cities in North America, Europe, and Australia. Underutilied mass transit and the reliance on private automobiles in cities are cause-and-effect forces that negatively affect the "livability" of the urban environment. Making our cities pedestrian-, bicycle-, and paratransit-friendly, Vuchic believes, is a goal that the United States can achieve with integrated planning. Should automobile use in cities be restricted to a constrained space, or should the city adapt to vehicular traffic? The optimum goal, Professor Vuchic stresses, is a middle-of-the-road approach that achieves balanced development: a complex marriage of economies of aggregation and the creation of livable cities. Although no single method of transportation can satisfy the diverse needs of a metropolitan area, he maintains, pedestrian modes of mobility and private car use, together with public transit, form a workable plan for cities' diverse densities and human character.

Based on years of observing the urban condition here and abroad, Vuchic discusses measures that can be considered in improving the urban environment: transit incentives and automobile disincentives, congestion pricing, and HOV lanes, for example. Students, city and transportation planners, and policymakers will find the recommendations in this book important and relevant.

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Contents

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Transport Planning
David Banister
No preview available - 2002
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About the author (1999)

Vukan R. Vuchic is UPS Foundation Professor of Transportation Engineering and professor of city and regional planning at the University of Pennsylvania. He has served as a consultant to scores of companies, public agencies, and city governments around the world: Belgrade in his native Yugoslavia; Edmonton and Toronto, Canada; Lima, Peru; Rome, Italy; and in the United States for the cities of New York and Philadelphia, among others. His other books include Urban Transit Operations, Planning and Economics and Urban Transit Systems and Technology.

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