One thing we have learnt this week – car free days

1024px-CAR_FREE_HIGHWAY_ON_SUNDAY_FILLED_WITH_BIKERS_IN_TOKYOCar free days are getting more and more popular all over the world.   Paris even held one in 2016.  Edinburgh held one yesterday.  I was at work having got there on my normal car method of cycling so took no part in it.  As in other car free days the city centre was closed to cars.  There were stalls, events and some kind of march involving children.  The event was part of the cities transformation plan.

The aim of yesterday was to make a point about air quality and the quality of life.  These are both affected by cars and road traffic in city centres.  The problem is that cars are the main source of NOX and particulates.  Whilst electric cars are part of the solution, solving the NOX aspect they create only a 50% reduction in particulates.   This is due 50% coming from tyres, dust on the road and brakes etc.

But the quality of life is so much better if people cycle, walk and use public transport.  There are indications that levels of cycling have stopped increasing.  Whether the council really has the political courage to do something radical in the city centre to reduce road traffic is open to question as is what is the best way to go about it?

 

Neil

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