Why is it that so few cities around the world show leadership in opposing rampant motoring? London, UK has a congestion fee. Toronto now taxes private motor vehicles (PDF. Yet these are few and far between.
In my neck of the woods, we have a draft 2009 budget with:
- cycling plan cut from $5m to $600,000
- $7m in cuts to public transit operating funds
- removed airport link from LRT phase I implementation
- $100m budget for new/wider roads
Hmm, seems a wee bit car-centric to me. In June 2008 city council decided to accelerate implementation of the cycling plan - what happened to that? What happened to our goal of getting 30% of commuters to use transit? Meanwhile we have city councillors telling the media "not everyone uses transit, so why should we all pay for it on our tax bills?" Ok, I want a refund on my tax bill - I use a smaller share of the road that my neighbours!
So, kids, here is the question - what does it take to get your/my city to see car use as the problem, and actually do something about it?