Stephen Rees's blog

Thoughts about the relationships between transport and the urban area it serves

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Life :: thetyee.ca

This is one of those ideas that has to get going sometime. I can still recall reading the research, conducted many years ago in suburban London, by someone who noticed that most of the cars parked on his street never moved. Car ownership vastly exceeds car use, and most cars spend most of their time parked. But then car ownership has a lot more to it than just acquiring the convenience of mobility. Cars are like our houses. They denote status. They are possessions that we use to identify ourselves and our values. And I am not just talking about the sort of people who customise their cars – or those who spend far more than the car is worth is keeping it not only running but in far better condition than when they bought it.

And the interior of the car says a lot about us too. As so many thieves have learned, possessions spend a lot of time in cars too.

Car sharing is a great idea from a transportation perspective. And so was the idea that people should be able to stop and pick up people waiting at bus stops so they can utilise some of the empty seats that drive past the long queues. But then reality kicks in. You want to use my car? You want me to get into your car? Once you can come up with the safety and security assurances, then both ideas can take off. But they are no small hurdles to overcome

Written by Stephen Rees

December 21, 2006 at 10:15 am

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