NBC Video: We’re Shackled By The Automotive Industry. And It’s Legal.

Watch the first 2 minutes…the automotive industry owns us. It’s literally written into law.  Keep watching…Can we get free from cars?

Public policy worships the automobile — and we pay the price

In America, driving often isn’t a choice but a necessity. Gregory Shill, a law professor at the University of Iowa, joined THINK to discuss how the law subsidizes driving at everyone’s expense.



Drivers Are Responsible On Halloween

APCSC would like to see driving restricted, or at the very least speeds strictly enforced on days like July 4th and Halloween. People walking, and especially kids walking are unpredictable and vulnerable when costumes, candy or fireworks are involved. Cars have no place in these events. Light sticks and flashlights are great, but the responsibility for injuries and deaths falls upon drivers of motor vehicles.

“Using National Highway Traffic Safety Administration data, the researchers compared pedestrian deaths on Halloween nights with deaths on two evenings the week before and the week after. They found car-pedestrian accidents kill four more people on average on Halloween than on other days.”


Trick-or-treaters beware: Halloween can be deadly for pedestrians and children face the greatest danger. New research found a 43 percent higher risk of pedestrian deaths on Halloween night than on other nights near that date.

Read: https://www.cbsnews.com/news/halloween-can-be-deadly-for-pedestrians/



Why Do Scooter Riders Ride on Sidewalks?

Since the 1920s we’ve been conditioned to believe that roads are designed for cars (they weren’t). Traffic congestion and vehicular fatalities, plus the effects on health and climate has shown city leaders all over the world the need to modify/eliminate the use of motor vehicles, and build better infrastructure for bikes, walking and other modes of transit.

Enter scooters. We know that there’s a need for alternatives to driving, and scooter share is being introduced successfully as legitimate micro-mobility.  Although the rules in most cities require them to be ridden on the street, why are scooter riders on sidewalks?

Would you let your 10-year-old ride a bike or a scooter on a street with vehicular traffic moving at 25mph, 35mph, 45mph?  We need to design streets that are are safe for an 8-year-old to an 80-year-old. Let’s use that standard. Painted bike lanes are a start, but paint doesn’t protect.  Until we have protected bike/scooter lanes everywhere (and we will!) we need to continue to work on reducing/eliminating the need to drive in our city by providing as many alternative transportation options as possible #toomanycars, and meanwhile seriously slow vehicle speeds! #slowthecars.

Most scooter riders using the sidewalk are afraid of cars, new survey shows

“As Salt Lake City officials threaten to crack down on dockless e-scooter companies that don’t do enough to reduce the number of users riding on sidewalks, new data suggests solutions to the problem go beyond education efforts.

A survey conducted by Lime, one of four e-scooter companies currently operating within the city, found that the primary reason users say they’re not on the streets isn’t because they don’t know the rules but because they fear for their safety riding next to fast-moving cars.”


One Thing We Can Do: Drive Less

Climate Action Doesn’t Have To Be Difficult.

Greta Thunberg is a climate change activist and a model for all of us, but we don’t all need to sail across the ocean in a solar powered racing yacht to make a difference.

One Thing We Can All Do Is Drive 10% Less. This “would be roughly 110 million metric tons of carbon dioxide, or the same as taking about 28 coal-fired power plants offline for a year.”

“Over one-third of all car trips are less than two miles, so walking, biking or taking public transport…” As a 1.4 mile square city, we can do this in Asbury Park!

By Tik Root and Aug. 28, 2019

“We’re not talking about getting rid of your car, just using it a little bit less. It turns out that even driving just 10 percent less — if everyone did it — would have a big impact on greenhouse gas emissions.

That’s because Americans drive trillions of miles every year, helping to make transportation the biggest contributor to United States greenhouse gas emissions.

In 2017, light-duty vehicles in the United States (including cars, S.U.V.s, pickups and most of the vehicles used for everyday life) produced 1,098 million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalents. That’s about one-fifth of the country’s total emissions footprint.”

Read more…


SUVs Are Killing Us

The auto industry is scared. Manufacturers are ceasing production of small and mid-sized cars because people aren’t buying them.  The reasons are varied, but many consumers cite climate and environmental concerns, traffic congestion, and parking, plus more options in mass transit and other modes of mobility.  This is true in the US, as well as Germany, and the UK. The truth is the big push in selling big vehicles is all about money. The industry feels the pinch of lower “product profitability” from cars, and the margins are much higher for SUVs, crossovers and trucks.  So the spin in advertising is that larger vehicles are preferable for safety reasons (oh yeah, and they’re so tough, and cool, and rugged – you get the picture)… but it’s a LIE.

Drivers in families with children have been brainwashed into the belief that they’re safer if they’re in a bigger vehicle, but “studies show they lull drivers into a false sense of security, encouraging them to take greater risks. Their height makes them twice as likely to roll in crashes and twice as likely to kill pedestrians…”

The question as to whether to ban large vehicles from cities is being batted about on social media – the debate is centered on tradespeople who “need” them. That’s another story.

‘A deadly problem’: should we ban SUVs from our cities?



The US Was Once A World Leader In Bike Lanes – Can We do It Again?

Read the surprising history (and see amazing photos!) about when the US was a world leader in bike lanes.  In the years before cars took over bike super-highways, cycle paths, and sidepaths enabled people to reach destinations in Rochester, Chicago, Minneapolis, New York (in particular, Coney Island), New Jersey, and Los Angeles.

Now cities all over the US like Asbury Park, are acknowledging the need to reduce/eliminate the use of automobiles, and rebuilding infrastructure for bikes and other micro-mobility.

In 1900, Los Angeles had a bike highway — and the US was a world leader in bike lanes

Los Angeles’ partially-completed California Cycleway, in 1900.
 (Pasadena Museum of History)

“The success of the Coney Island Cycle Path spurred cyclists in Upstate New York to push for local governments to build similar bike-specific routes that would run alongside roads, funded by tolls.

The idea was that by building these relatively smooth, sometimes paved paths — often called “sidepaths” — next to rutted country roads, cyclists would demonstrate the benefits of road investment to teamsters and farmers, who’d then support the campaign for paved roads in general.

These routes were distinct from sidewalks and were intended specifically to segregate bikes from horse and carriage traffic with a few feet of grass or other buffer. More than anything, they resemble today’s protected bike lanes, which are set off from roads with bollards, parked cars, or other physical barriers.”

Read about it!



NYTimes Opinion: Cars Are Death Machines

Is it the cars themselves that are killing machines, or is it the drivers/owners of the cars, and the culture the industry has created – which Americans are devoted to – contributing the most to deaths of so many people? 40,000 motor vehicle deaths last year, and more pedestrians and bicyclists than ever.  “Here’s the thing: Statistics clearly don’t seem to persuade anyone of the magnitude of this problem. Not policy makers or automakers, technologists or drivers.”

Cars Are Death Machines.
Self-Driving Tech
Won’t Change That.


Fuel Efficient And Electric Cars Are Not Enough

We must stop using fossil fuels to power electric cars, and we must all make a huge effort to drive less. Vehicle Miles Traveled (VMT) are a significant contributor to greenhouse gasses.  The problem with switching to electric cars is: “If Americans drive their electric cars anywhere near as much as they do with their current gas-guzzlers, it would cancel out the carbon reduction brought on by electrification.”

We can’t meet our climate goals with EVs and improved efficiency alone

“…electric vehicles are only as clean as the fuels used to power the grid. Electric vehicles will be charged by fossil fuels until renewables are slowly added to the electric grid. In Hawaii, the data showed that increased emissions from EV charging would have to be offset by further reductions in VMT.”

Read about it:


Walking And Bicycling Can Co-Exist And Benefit Cities

“The best trick the auto industry has pulled has been convincing the American public that walking and cycling cannot coexist.” Modacity

We’ve all heard it, and maybe expressed it ourselves: “those bike riders are dangerous on sidewalks, ride the wrong way on the street, and scare/endanger people walking…” there’s a sense of fear, antagonism, and chaos among citizens in American cities.

This is among the other ways the automotive industry has brainwashed the American public – from advertising to language.

Yes, we know.  This graphic advice comes from The Netherlands. Anti-bike lane folks in cities in the US persist in saying  “We’re not Amsterdam”, (Holland), Copenhagen (Denmark), Utrecht, or The Hague.  These cities seem to have no resemblance to American cities, but they have all gone through periods of time in which cars dominated, just as they do now in the US, and people stepped up.  Residents of Copenhagen fought back in the 70s.

Here are 10 ways that bikeability can boost walkability in American cities – and boost the health and economy of our cities too.

Far too often, people on foot and bike are pitted against each other, when they should be natural allies pushing for more equitable allocation of road space. Our #Walk21Rotterdam poster: “Ten Ways Improving Bikeability Can Boost Your City’s Walkability”.



Scooters Make Parking Easier in Asbury Park

Over 35,000 people attended the huge Sea.Hear.Now music festival. There was no parking allowed anywhere near the venue, and visitors found ways to get there, parking off site (way off site!), riding thousands of bikes, scooters, jitneys, walking, or using car-share.

The problem in cities all over the US isn’t lack of parking, it’s #toomanycars. Micromobility can solve the problem, in addition to banning cars from city centers entirely, making cities safer/saving lives, and improving business, by creating a people centered environment.

From Alexandria, VA to Barcelona and beyond, the newest microbility option is scooters. Improved infrastructure on streets for bikes and scooters is making Asbury Park a world-class, people-centric city.

Here’s why it’s now easier to find parking in Asbury

Steve Strunsky | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

Parking areas for the orange e-scooters in Asbury Park are typically located on sidewalks or other areas off the street in order not to take up increasingly hard-to-find parking spaces for cars.

In a survey of scooter riders, 33% said they would have used their car if not for the program, which is how officials arrived at the estimate for car-trips avoided. And 31% said they had not ridden a bicycle in at least a year, meaning the scooter program is not displacing bike use, at least not among many riders.

While the booming waterfront is Asbury’s most congested and parking-starved area, Manzella noted that e-scooters are intended for, and used by, people throughout the city. That includes the west side, where real estate development, tourism and other economic activity has lagged far behind the city’s waterfront and downtown restaurant district.

Read more…