City Meanwhile, In Paris…
posted by February 26 at 11:48 AMon
The mayor of Paris, Bertrand Delanoe, recently announced a plan to reduce traffic in France’s capital city by 40 percent in the next 13 years. The proposal includes extending a streetcar to the northwest corner of the city; giving priority to buses and bicyclists on city streets; new commuter rail lines to several suburbs; making the banks of the Seine (as well as other streets throughout the city) pedestrian-only; cutting speed limits; converting traffic lanes into bus-only express lanes; and providing free transit passes to the poor.
Paris’s town council adopted the plan, which is aimed at reducing the city’s greenhouse gas emissions by 60 percent , despite opposition from right-wing opponents.
Of course, Seattle isn’t Paris. (They have socialists and greens on their town council, for one thing.) But those who say it’s “impossible to reduce car capacity” should take note of the much more radical steps cities around the world are taking right now. Meanwhile, we’re taking steps toward building another elevated freeway that would actually increase car capacity on our waterfront.