Stephen Rees's blog

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

How many people move per hour …

with 2 comments

This graphic was posted to twitter this morning by Brent Toderian. It comes from Dale Bracewell the Manager of Transportation Planning at the City of Vancouver.

Screen Shot 2017-09-29 at 9.11.46 AM

Most people still think that widening streets and adding lanes for more cars will somehow help congestion. In fact that simply induces more traffic and makes matters worse. If more people chose to use bikes and walking for short trips – which are in fact the majority of trips in the city – there would be less traffic. What we need to concentrate on is the number of people being moved, not the number of vehicles. Using  cars with a capacity of five or more people to move just one or two people is clearly a waste of space – not just the 3 metre lane width on streets but the parking spaces needed to accommodate cars when they are not being used – which is most of the time. There are far better uses for urban land than storing vehicles.

Clearly even if we cannot afford lots more skytrain lines, we could be moving lots more people if we had bus lanes in the City of Vancouver. There are not many at present, and most are peak hour, peak direction. The City cannot do very much by itself to increase transit supply but it could do a great deal to make the bus network much better. Exclusive bus only lanes and traffic light priority would straightforward to implement – but the noisy pro-car lobby would have to overridden.

Written by Stephen Rees

September 29, 2017 at 9:37 am

Posted in Transportation

2 Responses

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  1. A couple of comment

    1/ “The City cannot do very much by itself to increase transit supply”

    Yes it can. Exclusive bus only lanes…and any tool speeding up bus service increase transit supply at constant bus hour.

    2/ “Exclusive bus only lanes …but the noisy pro-car lobby would have to overridden”

    if it was only that!

    Unfortunately, in Vancouver, many lobbies with the blessing of City Call are working against transit:

    When either Viva,or Carfreeday Vancouver raison d’etre seem to be to disrupt bus service, tomorrow, sunday Oct 1st, the whole Paris will be “car free”…without hindering bus service (quite the opposite in fact!).

    Then come the bike advocates which will explain a better proposal than the below for Commercial should have a parking lane instead of a bus lane:

    The problem vancouver is suffering is not so much a “noisy pro-car lobby”, but the lack of cooperation between different groups proposing alternative to the car, with many of them targeting the most vulnerable, instead of facing the car lobby (the fact that HUB was advocating against a bike lane on arbutus because it could have impeded cars, to justify a bike lane bisecting kits park was also tale telling)


    September 30, 2017 at 12:09 pm

  2. HUB (@wearehub) just tweeted (2 Oct 2017 1:54pm) “Hey @TransLink, #ILoveTransit because it helps us get where we’re going faster! #biketotransit”

    Stephen Rees

    October 2, 2017 at 2:00 pm

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