Tuesday, 22 September 2015

Car Free Day Tuesday 22nd September >>> and 'freedom'

Today is 'car-free day':
World Carfree Network - World Carfree Day (WCD)
India’s Business Hub Experiments with Car Free Day

When it comes to the school run, it's difficult to not use the car:
Futures Forum: Kids and cars >>> the Walking School Bus >>>>> "improving road safety around the school"

Car-free Day has been promoted by the County Council:
Devon Car Free Day

And the notion is getting big in London:
Camden Council: What is Car Free Day?
Boris Johnson wants car-free Sundays for London amid warning of congestion - Home News - UK - The Independent

It's all about 'sustainability':
Futures Forum: Communities Living Sustainably in Dorset: Sept newsletter
Sustainable transport - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The current thinking is that we need fewer cars - and fewer pollution/carbon-generating cars:
Futures Forum: What to do about car emissions: from Paris to London...
Futures Forum: What to do about car emissions: from Paris to London ... yet again...

However, simply producing fewer petrol-driven cars won't necessarily make a difference - and this has created quite a debate.

There is the embodied carbon in the car:
Manufacturing a car creates as much carbon as driving it | Environment | The Guardian
Futures Forum: What to do about car emissions ... and embodied carbon ...

There is the issue of how the electric alternative will help:
Are electric cars bad for the environment? | Leo Hickman | Environment | The Guardian
The ‘electric cars aren’t green’ myth debunked | shrinkthatfootprint.com
Cleantech and EV Myths Debunked | The Energy Collective

However, the debate goes much wider.

To what extent is the car about 'freedom'?
Freedom and the Car | Foundation for Economic Education
Is the Car a Menace or a Miracle? | Foundation for Economic Education

It certainly is a potent symbol:
Annapolis Freedom Fest and Car Show Oct. 9-10 - Wayne County Journal-Banner Online: News
Choice, Control, Freedom and Car Ownership - Anthropology in Practice - Scientific American Blog Network

However, this symbolism seems to be on the wane:
Cars losing their status in Germany - IOL Motoring Industry News | IOL.co.za
Why the Car Is No Longer a Symbol of Freedom and Adventure in the West | Streetsblog Denver

If we go back a century, the mystique of the car largely started with Henry Ford:
Henry Ford and the Triumph of the Auto Industry | Foundation for Economic Education

To what extent, however, did the spread of the motorcar depend on subsidized infrastructure?
Futures Forum: Decentralized Manufacturing
Futures Forum: We are all truck-drivers now ... The free movement of goods, increased carbon emissions and the destruction of manufacturing industry
Futures Forum: Subsidies and social engineering: or why we build roads.

In other words, its about localism:
Center for a Stateless Society » Resilient Communities and Local Economies

How far do we now need to travel from our homes to our work? 
Futures Forum: For community and against sprawl ..... 'Strong Towns' and 'the end of the suburbs'
Futures Forum: The End of Suburbia: ten years on

Did General Motors really give us more choice?
The Degradation of Work Revisited: More of the Same: The Rise of Sloanism and Flexible Mass Production


Chevrolet 1955 Motoramic New Car Advertisement / General Motors Infomercials No. 7 of 10 - YouTube
Futures Forum: Planned Obsolescence: and The Men Who Made Us Spend
BBC Two - The Men Who Made Us Spend

To what extent, though, does not having a car set us free?
Car-Free Tourism | Visit Scotland’s most popular tourism attractions without a car
Leave the car at home and have a car free day out - Slievemoyle Cottages

To finish:

The car-free movement is a broad, informal, emergent network of individuals and organizations including social activists, urban planners and others brought together by a shared belief that large and/or high-speed motorized vehicles (cars, trucks, tractor units, motorcycles, ...)[1] are too dominant in most modern cities. 
The goal of the movement is to create places where motorized vehicle use is greatly reduced or eliminated, to convert road and parking space to other public uses and to rebuild compact urban environments where most destinations are within easy reach by walking, cycling or public transport.[2]
1 Context
2 Urban design
3 Advocacy groups
4 Activism groups
5 Official events
6 Carfree development
6.1 Definitions and types
6.2 Vauban
6.3 Limited access type
6.4 Pedestrianised centres
6.5 Benefits and problems of carfree developments
7 Other examples
8 See also
9 References
10 Further reading
11 External links

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