Category Archives: Transportation

Why the BeltLine is so important to Atlantans

The still far-from-complete Atlanta BeltLine is one of the most discussed pieces of non-automotive infrastructure in the country. Two books have been written about its creation1. A huge number of newspaper stories have also been devoted to it. Furthermore, hundreds … Continue reading

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Harbin and Vladivostok

I was in Harbin and Vladivostok last week. These two cities may be in different countries, but they are only 500 km apart and have a common late-19th-century origin as Russian railroad towns. Harbin was the administrative center of the … Continue reading

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The Promenade Fleuve-Montagne in Montréal

When I was in Montréal a week ago, I made a point of visiting the new Promenade Fleuve-Montagne. The Promenade is a 3.8 km walkway between the old port on the Saint Lawrence (the “fleuve”) and the base of Mount … Continue reading

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New York’s pedestrian infrastructure gets even better

The New York area famously accounts for something like 40% of all U.S. transit trips1. New York may do even better when it comes to pedestrian trips, but these are a great deal harder to measure. New York’s walkscore (89.2) ranks first, but … Continue reading

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Some notes on the transportation geography of San José, Costa Rica

Costa Rica is in many ways one of the world’s most admirable countries. It gave up its army in 1949 and has been a democracy ever since, holding freely contested elections every four years. No other Latin American country has … Continue reading

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The Madrid Río project

I visited the parklands created by the Madrid Río project1 a couple of weeks ago. The area had still been under construction in 2010 when I was last in Madrid. The Madrid Río project is of course one of the world’s most famous … Continue reading

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Detroit’s new QLine streetcar

Most of the new, short, slow, and infrequently-running streetcar lines built in the United States in the last few years appear to have been constructed at least to some extent for reasons having little to do with any possible role as transportation facilities. Many seem … Continue reading

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Phoenix urbanizes itself

Among all of what today are the largest cities of the United States, Phoenix was very nearly the smallest in the middle of the 20th century1. In 1950 it had only 106,818 people—it was smaller than New Bedford!—and its metropolitan … Continue reading

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Waiting for traffic lights to change on the new Expo Line

When I was in Los Angeles three weeks ago, I naturally rode the new Expo Line between Santa Monica and downtown a couple of times. I can confirm that the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority has a hit on its … Continue reading

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Being a pedestrian in central Kuala Lumpur

I spent a few days in Kuala Lumpur last week. While travelling I was reading a terrific book, Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya : negotiating urban space in Malaysia1, by Ross King, a professorial fellow at Melbourne University. I had been in KL … Continue reading

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