Friday, July 31, 2009

We are growing

The fare-free movement is growing. We have two new blogs now:

Fare-Free Philly for Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA
Fare-Free New Zealand for all of New Zealand.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Sri Lanka plan to expand public transport

..."If 10 percent of passengers were transferred to public transport, 200 million dollars will be saved per year," Kumarage told a forum on public passenger transport ahead of a summit of south Asian leaders in Colombo...
....Traffic congestion is constantly increasing as more and more people buy vehicles...
...A public passenger transport system which is comfortable and competitive will reduce the daily use of private vehicles and eventually reduce environmental pollution....
...In the early years, its tram cars and railroads were on par with the best found elsewhere with the Ceylon Transport Board one of the world's largest state-owned bus services at the time.
"We are attempting to put right something that has been neglected probably for well over 30-40 years, giving public passenger transport its due place in the economy," Kumarage told reporters.... LankaBusinessOnline

Monday, July 27, 2009

Dramatic ridership increase with free transit in French towns

En Castres, a raíz de la entrada en vigor de la gratuidad, el número de personas que utilizaron el autobús para sus desplazamientos aumentó un 76%, mientras en la vecina población de Mazamet, el aumento fue espectacular y alcanzó un 186% más de pasajeros.La iniciativa fue idea del alcalde de Castres que es a su vez el responsable de transportes de la comunidad Castres-Mazamet.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Live free or drive

A small group of Nigerian guerrillas are costing the oil market 1 million barrels a day. The fossil-fuel industry and the national governments and armies they control cannot protect their sprawling infrastructure. Pipelines, shipping routes, pumping stations, are too spread out, too exposed. Consequently they MUST seek totalitarian control of large regions of Africa, the Middle East, and the Caspian region. Failing that they are settling for chaos to at least keep rivals at bay.
For peace-loving earthlings, wringing our hands over the trampling of human rights, as long we keep driving cars, things are going to get worse. We can protest all we want, but as long as we tolerate the private auto we continue to spread terror and forge our own chains.

We have a simple choice: live free or drive.

[reference: xinhuanet]

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

German auto subsidy documented

...Every year local governments in Germany are estimated to spend some €15 billion on their car traffic. Only between 15% and 45% of these costs are recoveredby, for example, parking fees and contributions from regional and national government. The remainder is the equivalent of € 100 – € 150 for every citizen paid from the local authority budget. Results from other European cities indicate comparable subsidies. In the Austrian City of Graz, the net spending for car transport is double the amount contributed to their public transport system.... 2005 I.C.L.E.I

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Carfree Town to be built in Kentucky

I will build a carfreetown in the golden triangle of Kentucky.

The town will have 3 major tenets.

  • It will be car free. People who cannot drive will be first class citizens.
  • It will be affordable. It won't be cost prohibitive for people who could benefit the most from a carfreetown.
  • Law & order will rule the day. People with special needs and the elderly are vulnerable populations. Crime will not be an issue in Carfreetown. Carfreetown will enable both of these groups to fully unleash their contributions to society.

The town will resemble European towns with commercial enterprises on the lower floors and residences on the upper floors. Public transportation routes will be incorporated into the town's design. While commercial (services, banking), retail and restaurant enterprises will be major components of the town, an important feature will be the manufacturing plants that will be on the outskirts of town. Also, agriculture and agricultural tourism will be important to many residents of the town and will be strongly supported.

The town will offer a high quality of life for ALL its residents.

Chris Noll, Founder, Carfreetown

Friday, July 17, 2009

Chicago - ease traffic - make CTA fare-free

We have been reminded by "Are you paying too much on the CTA? Fare changes muddy an already complex menu of options for area commuters" (Page 1, July 6) of how complicated and otherwise troublesome the Chicago Transit Authority fare structure is. We can be encouraged by this article to wonder what would happen if CTA service should be made available to everyone without charge. More of us would be encouraged to use public transportation, thus easing both automobile traffic and urban pollution. Some of the expenses of routine operation of the system would be reduced if fares did not have to be dealt with. How the community would finance such a civilized and civilizing public service, like the sidewalks, public schools and streetlights, that it routinely provides could be worked out properly by sensible citizens. Chicago, by such an innovation, could become celebrated worldwide for promoting thereby a lively sense of community among its inhabitants. - letters
-- George Anastaplo, professor of law, Loyola
University of Chicago

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Pipelineistan - Chaos and pain until ...

The great powers will fight over Pipelineistan until the oil and gas run out, or we stop wasting energy and control growth. Right now, the U.S. has the largest military commitment and is losing badly. You know what this means, more nuclear blackmail for nations, and endless terrorizing of the local people. Pipelines and related oil and gas infrastructure are particularly hard to secure, consequently total control of the population is necessary.
So, what to do? Join your local transit advocacy group. Start free public transit in your town. It is being done in cities and towns of all sizes now. Don't waste your time petitioning national governments, they are owned by the fossil-fuel industry. When free transit spreads from town to town, city to city, we can gradually reduce the wasteful autosprawl system.

-- more info on Pipelines: Pepe Escobar, Asia Times
-- also FPT Website
-- also CommonDreams

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Here's an idea: Let Wall Street manage the biosphere.


Carbon cap-and-trade is complicated... kind of like credit default swaps, and structured investment vehicles. It has been tried for years in the EU and there is a voluntary-cap exchange in the US. Guess what? NO PROGRESS. Twenty years from now we will be bailing out Goldman Sachs again when the carbon-market bubble bursts. Save this post and check back.

If you want to mitigate carbon dioxide emissions, do the following: join the movement for free public transit. Don't wait for national governments, the fossil-fuel industry has made sure to control them. But they can't control every municipality. Your town can implement free public transit for 60 basis points of tax. The benefits are immediate and you will get that money back many times over.

Listen to Elizabeth Warren on PublicRadio

see also Michael K. Dorsey in the LATimes

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Cars bite the hand, traffic chokes Saudi Arabia

...There is no doubt that there is a beneficiary (or beneficiaries) of the disappearance of the urban mass transit, and there are those affected by it. I consider that the disappearance of the collective means of transport and a crime against our cities crowded with cars and strangulated, the number of cars has become more than a small number of people, this is in addition to causing severe congestion and traffic jams, and the number of accidents and traffic violations, and result in lack of people to create and increase Aspethm and nerve disorder In addition to increasing the proportion of air pollution, corruption and greater neurological and respiratory diseases in cities... alwatan via google translate

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Hohhot, Inner Mongolia - plan for free buses.

Rumors abound in Hohhot, Inner Mongolia that the government is considering making some or all of the nearly 100 bus lines fare-free. Incredibly, one of the arguments against is that the buses will become crowded. We keep hearing this. It just shows how bankrupt and brainless is the anti-public transit argument.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Hasselt - 12 years of free transport bliss

Until 30 June 1997, there was an average of 1,000 bus passengers a day in Hasselt. Today, the average is 12,600 passengers a day. There are now 46 city buses on nine lines, including a boulevard shuttle and a city centre shuttle. Two nightlines run at night. Altogether, these city buses cover 2,258,638 km in a year. All this benefits mobility in Hasselt. However, there is also a social benefit. Visits to hospitals have increased significantly. Free public transport is here to stay in Hasselt. UrbanRemark

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Cars killing NYC commerce

on a weekday, the average car driven into Manhattan south of 60th Street causes a total of 3.26 hours of delays to everybody else.

see also Planetizen

Monday, July 6, 2009

Free buses bring Chapel Hill livability award

Triangle Business Journal - ...The plan worked. Ridership on Chapel Hill transit has more than doubled since fares were eliminated – going from 3 million in 2002 to a projected 7 million this year....