While American cities tend to bend over backwards to accommodate vehicle traffic, cities in Europe are going the opposite direction, making planning changes that make it prohibitively annoying and expensive (if not downright illegal) to drive cars in the inner city.
NYT environment reporter Elizabeth Rosenthal discusses the traffic-tormenting situation in Europe:
Cities including Vienna to Munich and Copenhagen have closed vast swaths of streets to car traffic. Barcelona and Paris have had car lanes eroded by popular bike-sharing programs. Drivers in London and Stockholm pay hefty congestion charges just for entering the heart of the city. And over the past two years, dozens of German cities have joined a national network of “environmental zones” where only cars with low carbon dioxide emissions may enter.
What a novel idea. Making cities more livable for people, not cars. Imagine that.
Read Rosenthal’s article here.
Photo: Pedestrians and cyclists wait for a green light in downtown Zurich. (Christoph Bangert / NYT)