Wow, it’s the end of March already. Here are a few of the smaller items that caught our attention over the last week.
We need better trucks
Newsroom reported on a Ministry of Transport report showing just how dirty our current truck fleet is.
A heavy diesel truck costs society $1 in health and productivity losses due to air pollution for every kilometre it drives, Marc Daalder reports
A report quietly released by the Ministry of Transport in July shows tighter regulation of vehicle imports for air pollution could save society billions of dollars over the next three decades.
If New Zealand implemented a requirement that new vehicle imports meet Euro 6/VI air pollution standards, the costs would run to between $22 million and $236m but the benefits would be between $1.1b and $8.3b.
As it stands, less than one in five new vehicles entering the fleet meets the Euro 6/VI standard and they make up just 3 percent of the overall fleet. Baseline projections indicate Euro 6/VI will continue to make up a minority of new imports until 2028 or later.
It’s not the bike lanes fault
It seems it’s not only drivers along Upper Harbour Dr (UHD) that have trouble with barriers. Jalopnik ran this article after incident to UHD in Vancouver.
In the case of cyclists and pedestrians, sure, it’s possible to construct a hypothetical scenario where they might get hit while doing something that makes it entirely their fault. But not bike lane barriers and traffic calming measures. They’re just sitting there. Not moving. Completely stationary. Asking drivers to avoid hitting them is like asking drivers to avoid hitting buildings. It’s nothing more than a basic requirement for being allowed to drive on public roads.
If that’s too much to ask, then maybe it’s time for the state to take your driver’s license away. Oh, you live in a suburban hellscape and can’t get around without a car? Too bad. Stay home and have your groceries delivered until you can prove to society that you can be trusted behind the wheel again. Or take the bus. Sorry if you think you’re too good for public transportation. You’re clearly not good enough at driving to have a license, so suck it up, buttercup. That barrier you hit could have been someone’s child.
Hey @CityofVancouver this is second incident I’ve seen caused by these useless ‘slow street’ barricades installed last month. They don’t slow down traffic; they cause crashes and traffic chaos. pic.twitter.com/A4xZOwMCGi
— Jill Bennett (@jillreports) March 23, 2023
Images of the space dedicated to parking.
You ever see those color-coded maps of how much downtown land is devoted to car storage? @Parking_Reform has put them all in one place, and ranked 50+ U.S. cities by their parking land use https://t.co/crGNnvRnRz pic.twitter.com/jpmX6JKrdi
— Henry Grabar (@henrygrabar) March 23, 2023
— Sarah Habershon (@eye_am_the_i) March 24, 2023
Who doesn’t love a bit of CRL footage
And a timelapse from the Maungawhau tunnel portal
We need more women involved in designing our cities
It’s long been established that our cities would be much better if women had a greater say in how they were designed. Here’s the latest on it.
Our new study, published over the weekend, found that women experience gendered barriers to riding a bike compared with men. This includes a lack of supportive infrastructure, such as bike paths or protected lanes, to make them feel safer in traffic.
We found involving women in decisions about implementing new bike infrastructure, as well as expanding the use of e-bikes through financial incentives, are key to getting more women on the road.
Women take different kinds of trips and ride different bikes from men. Women also have different preferences for biking infrastructure that makes them feel safe and comfortable.
And yet, when it comes to creating spaces for people to bikes in cities, women do not have a clear seat at the table.
Kiwis like the Clean Car Discount
Despite the attempted culture war over it a few years ago, it seems most Kiwis support the government’s Clean Car Discount scheme. Newsroom reports:
The Government’s Clean Car policies are broadly popular, a new survey of 1000 adults commissioned by EV industry group Drive Electric suggests.
More people support than oppose the Clean Car Discount (also known as the feebate scheme or derogatively as the “ute tax”), including voters from all Parliamentary parties other than ACT. The Clean Car Standard, which requires vehicle importers to reduce the average emissions of their imports or pay a fine, was supported across the board.
Despite this support, I wonder if it would have survived the recent policy purge by the government if it was still in the implementation phase when rather than being already established.
London are creating a network of frequent express buses linking up many of the outer suburbs. This does sound a little bit similar to the bus improvements to the Northwest, which while not perfect, is something that should be rolled out to other corridors too, before more dedicated infrastructure can be built.
— Jesse Feld (@JesseRSFeld) March 29, 2023
Is NZ going tunnel crazy?
If you think that another Waitemata Harbour Crossing at an estimated $15-25 billion wasn’t expensive enough, Stuff asked if we should tunnel under the Cook Straight and it seems many people agree, with (at the time of writing this) 68% in support from over 11k votes.
A few final Tweets
— reGlasgow (@reglasgow_web) March 25, 2023
NY's trains and buses carry more than twice as many people as all the U.S. airlines — combined! pic.twitter.com/i2Dp7U5dxw
— Philip Mark Plotch (@profplotch) March 28, 2023
Lastly, enjoy a great little video feature about an e-bike trial run in partnership with a marae in Wainuiomata. The personal stories are a joy, and make a pretty great case for rolling out bike libraries and subsidies anywhere we can.
Have a great weekend.