The Big 'Let's sell our cars and take buses/ebikes instead' thread (warning: probably very dull)

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  • rjsterry
    rjsterry Posts: 27,595
    Stevo_666 said:

    rjsterry said:

    Stevo_666 said:

    Pross said:

    Stevo_666 said:

    Pross said:

    Stevo_666 said:

    Not sure how happy the coffee shop owner is with that, especially if that becomes a common problem.

    So are you agreeing that too many cars are making things bad for business? If a place only has scope for a finite amount of parking and all those spaces are always full what is the solution other than trying to attract business from people not arriving by car?
    No, quite the opposite. They are losing customers because of inadequate parking facilities. Pretty obvious reallly.
    But if they can't fit any more parking into a place that is constrained (for the reasons Brian explained) what are they supposed to do? In the case cited, there was parking but some entitled person didn't want to have to pay to use it despite having spent money on fuel driving somewhere purely to get a cup of coffee. It's like the people I see who complain they drove to walk up Pen-y-Fan but couldn't find anywhere to park because it was too busy. I think the term is fuckwits.
    Another car park not too far away? Don't care that much as I'll never go there.
    It's surrounded on all sides by two rivers and a motorway. There's no unused land. You'd probably call it overcrowded 😁

    Closest place you could conceivably build a car park is about a 25 minute walk away.
    If there as many car parks as FA says, then it sounds like there's no actual shortage of parking if people are prepared to park and walk a bit. That's what I do round my neck of the woods, even though there is plenty of parking for the car using majority :smile:
    You can just look it up on Google Maps if you don't believe me.
    1985 Mercian King of Mercia - work in progress (Hah! Who am I kidding?)
    Pinnacle Monzonite

    Part of the anti-growth coalition
  • briantrumpet
    briantrumpet Posts: 17,828
    Enough about the specifics of Topsham, which I humbly venture to suggest I might know a little better than others on here. I just found the quoted comment as illustrative of the closed mindset that planners and councils are up against: even when a locality's problems are well known, even when they've come up with solutions to try to make the most of the limited spaces available by increasing turnover, even when they have installed and promoted several other frequent/easy ways of getting here, *some* car drivers still manage to moan about how they are being penalised.

    It might surprise you, but I have little sympathy. Actually, it might induce just a teensy weensy bit of schadenfreude. Not least as they'll just continue looking for that elusive parking place, moaning about parking charges, or sitting in yet another traffic jam. They just aren't interested in solving the problem they're prolonging and exacerbating.
  • First.Aspect
    First.Aspect Posts: 14,615
    Google doesn't say anything about the size of the car parks. I therefore conclude that there are between 7 and an infinite number of parking spaces available.

    There does seem to be a station, though, which suggests, on the face of it, that it is a location easier to reach than - for example - Machu Picchu.
  • briantrumpet
    briantrumpet Posts: 17,828

    Hmm, interesting. The Ardèche overturned the previous national 80km/h restriction (brought in to try to reduce road KSI's) in September 2022, and that's being cited as a possible reason for the rise of 73% (from 15 fatalities in 2022 up to 26 in 2023). The Drôme has stuck with 80km/h, so it'll be interesting to compare their figures, given the similarities otherwise of the two départements.



  • rick_chasey
    rick_chasey Posts: 72,517

    I mean, if we assume the same level of accidents, it would be bending physics for there not to be more deadly accidents if they were all travelling faster?!

  • Pross
    Pross Posts: 40,435

    It's not as simple as that, even if you had identical collisions in identical vehicles the outcome wouldn't always be the same and in reality no two collisions are going to be identical. If you hit something like a large tree you're much more likely to get killed or seriously injured and even hitting the same tree at different angles can produce completely different results. One year of data doesn't really show anything, especially with such relatively low rates. One collision involving a full car could have led to a 33% increase on the previous years figures. There's a high chance that increased speed has played a part but you'd need a few years to be certain. I wonder what the figures were like for the years before the speed limit was reduced (although even that doesn't give much help as they didn't stay at the lower level long enough).

  • briantrumpet
    briantrumpet Posts: 17,828


    It will be interesting to see the nationwide data for 2023, given that each département has the freedom to choose 80 or 90km/h: that'll be a more robust test.

  • rick_chasey
    rick_chasey Posts: 72,517

    Sure but your kinetic energy is Energy = 1/2mV² so that is *a lot* more energy which needs to go somewhere.

  • Pross
    Pross Posts: 40,435

    Of course and speed is the most important element in the severity of a collision (and the main one obviously if all other things are equal). Just pointing out that there is insufficient data there to suggest that the speed limit being put back up was the main factor in the rate of KSIs. Two collisions going off the road and down a mountain or into a wall instead of into some light vegetation or a nice wide road could account for the increase. In my home county 6 people were killed in collisions in 2016, in 1995 10 people died in a single coach crash in the county.

  • Stevo_666
    Stevo_666 Posts: 58,385

    You also need to take into account the general standard of French driving...

    "I spent most of my money on birds, booze and fast cars: the rest of it I just squandered." [George Best]
  • Pross
    Pross Posts: 40,435

    Not really as the road is still in France no matter what the speed limit.

  • First.Aspect
    First.Aspect Posts: 14,615

    The main factors are traffic volume and speed, I would say.

    Unless they've started speed testing driverless Tesla's on that stretch of road, that is.

  • briantrumpet
    briantrumpet Posts: 17,828

    The reason I'm interested in France in particular is that I'm not aware of another country that has reduced national speed limits in an effort to reduce KSIs then has permitted individual areas to raise them back to the previous level twelve months later with little lese changing (it's not like there's a significant generational or climatic shift in that time). It should provide enough data to give some meaningful insights into how changing upper speed limits can affect KSIs, if at all.

    FWIW, I do think it's changed driving habits on 'fun' main roads to a degree, at least in the Drôme, and a good proportion of drivers do stick roughly to or below 80km/h. Considering that many of the hairy roads with a 80 limit don't have armco at all, I'm actually surprised that more people don't end up deaded in ravines.

  • davebradswmb
    davebradswmb Posts: 461

    It is an absolute truth that increasing the speed at which crashes occur will increase the number of fatalities, the question is by how much? and the deciding at what point it becomes too much. There is not enough data from the Ardeche figures on their own to be able to draw statistically robust conclusions.

    I am totally in favour of the reduction in urban speed limits to 20 mph as introduced in Wales, there is real statistical data that shows a very significant reduction in deaths and serious injuries, and there will be little real impact on journey times except during those times when there are few vehicles on the road. However someone might argue that reducing to 15 mph will improve outcomes further, and that would be true, but the impact of that change would be much smaller. How do you ever decide at what point the benefits of reducing speeds are no longer justified? One extra death doesn't seem very significant until it's your child that's killed.

  • First.Aspect
    First.Aspect Posts: 14,615

    Yes, I think the missing information is how much average speeds have actually changed. Was anyone taking any notice to begin with, are people driving faster now.

    The analogy to the 20mph zones is a good one, because there was a measurable speed reduction in the trial areas.

  • briantrumpet
    briantrumpet Posts: 17,828

    You've got to hand it to the Telegraph, using a headline that is entirely unsubstantiated by the the article below it. Not one shred of evidence that the 20mph limit causes slow average speeds in London.

    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2024/01/10/sadiq-khans-20mph-limit-makes-london-slowest-city-analysis/

  • pblakeney
    pblakeney Posts: 25,706

    They wish they could do 20 mph! 🤣 Average speeds.

    • 8.7 mph to 7.1 mph in central London
    • 12.5 mph to 11.6 mph in inner London
    • 20.3 mph to 19.3 mph in outer London


    The above may be fact, or fiction, I may be serious, I may be jesting.
    I am not sure. You have no chance.
    Veronese68 wrote:
    PB is the most sensible person on here.
  • Pross
    Pross Posts: 40,435

    When I was in London last month I really struggled to understand why anyone was driving in the centre (talking Oxford Street / SOHO / West End area). Even the speeds above seem optimistic in that area.

  • briantrumpet
    briantrumpet Posts: 17,828


    Do people ever do surveys of drivers in such places? It would be really interesting to understand the reasoning of people sat in stationary traffic in places where there are good alternatives that are faster. I suspect a lot of it is still the mindset that once one has a car, any alternative is dismissed as inferior.

  • Stevo_666
    Stevo_666 Posts: 58,385

    20 is more of a target than a limit in central London.

    "I spent most of my money on birds, booze and fast cars: the rest of it I just squandered." [George Best]
  • TheBigBean
    TheBigBean Posts: 20,552

    Not many people do drive. Most cars are private hire cars.

  • rick_chasey
    rick_chasey Posts: 72,517

    Can't comment on London as I only use public transport but when on business in Paris, I will always jump in a cab as I need that running between meetings to catch up on emails and take calls etc and that is just not practical on the underground.

  • Pross
    Pross Posts: 40,435

    The majority were but there were a significant number that weren't (or at least weren't showing a licence plate) including the one guy getting irate when dozens of pedestrians continued crossing the road in front of him after the lights had changed. A lot were high end cars that presumably just wanted people to see them.

  • rjsterry
    rjsterry Posts: 27,595

    Before anyone feels too bad about UK public transport. This guy tried to walk to the station...



    1985 Mercian King of Mercia - work in progress (Hah! Who am I kidding?)
    Pinnacle Monzonite

    Part of the anti-growth coalition
  • Pross
    Pross Posts: 40,435
    edited January 10

    Looking on Google Maps that's actually a fail on their walking route and you can actually walk the same route as it gives for a car journey (basically turning north at the point where the time marker is). It's a pretty classic example of the 'car is king' attitude in the US though, I remember asking for directions to walk somewhere when I went to LA in 1994 and being asked why I wasn't driving. There's an image on Streetview of a guy in a wheelchair trying to cross the intersection around the I96 symbol, there's a pavement to just before that point which seems to end leaving pedestrians with nowehere to go (there is an on carriageway cycle lane though which is pretty radical for Florida!).

    Edit - the guy in a wheelchair might actually be a homeless person, he's in a wheelchair on the November 2020 shot from one road and seems to be out of it in December 2021 on the other road but sat in roughly the same spot.

  • Stevo_666
    Stevo_666 Posts: 58,385
    "I spent most of my money on birds, booze and fast cars: the rest of it I just squandered." [George Best]
  • rjsterry
    rjsterry Posts: 27,595

    Bang up to date photo there.

    1985 Mercian King of Mercia - work in progress (Hah! Who am I kidding?)
    Pinnacle Monzonite

    Part of the anti-growth coalition
  • Pross
    Pross Posts: 40,435

    I smell a company using this as an excuse to cut a section that is losing them money. Besides, I thought we were previously being told no-one would obey the limits so it shouldn’t be making a difference to bus times.

  • Stevo_666
    Stevo_666 Posts: 58,385
    "I spent most of my money on birds, booze and fast cars: the rest of it I just squandered." [George Best]