Energy Cities proposition 31 - Plan modal shift to sustainable transport

Urban planning as a way of reducing energy use

2014

Energy Cities l’association européenne des autorités locales en transition énergétique

Energy Cities is a network of more than 1,000 cities in 30 different countries. Convinced that energy transition is more than a question of renewable energy or advanced technologies, Energy Cities proposes to use resources in a reasoned way, to strengthen local participation and to improve the quality of life in a democratic Europe. In 2014, the network presents 30 proposals for the Energy Transition of Territories.

They are a source of inspiration to think and act differently. To finally turn the page on unsustainable practices that lead us into energy, climate and perhaps economic and social dead ends.

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Energy Cities proposition 31 - Plan modal shift to sustainable transport

The problem at hand

The transition towards a more energy-efficient world is also, and above all, a matter for the transport sector. Reducing energy use in this sector is much more complicated that in buildings. Changing the way we travel means changing our habits and involves more than just having one’s flat insulated.

Reducing energy use in the transport sector also involves reorganising city space so as to give public space back to the inhabitants.

The local authority has, therefore, an indispensable role to play in changing the current situation. The car culture has reached its climax. The most attractive cities are those who privilege walking, cycling and public transport. Achieving 50% of journeys by bikes or public transport takes time. It also requires some planning as well as a long-term, strictly applied strategy.

Proposal

An urban and peri-urban mobility plan is a diagnosis of the current situation: origins, destinations and journey purpose; modes of transport used; energy used for transportation.

More importantly, this is about the objectives we want to reach (quieter city, public space given back to the inhabitants, cycling and pedestrian path networks, improved or transformed public transport) and the time allowed for reaching them. Figure-based targets in terms of modal distribution and energy use have to be defined.

Conditions for success

  • Creating cohesion between decision-makers and urban planners, public and private transport operators and user (cyclists, pedestrians, etc.) associations.

  • Having a trained and motivated technical team.

  • Working as a team from the beginning of the process and throughout all its phases.

  • Keeping the population informed of the objectives, seeking its consent and, if possible, its desire.

  • Keeping steadfast despite the obstacles to change.

Références

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