Wednesday, May 26, 2010

The Future Is Now

Thanks to Bike Denton for sending me this study on congestion and road narrowing vs. capacity expansion. The thing to take from all of it is that congestion is inevitable. Commerce needs it and frankly, people need it as well. We organize our lives, cities, and economies around predictable convergence points, areas where "traffic" will be the highest. The question then becomes, how do we want that to look, to operate, and then it also becomes what can we afford long-term.

Which reminded me of the movie the Time Machine. A rather droll remake with of all the typical silly futuristic trappings like living on the moon and goofy outfits to let dummies know, "yes, this is set in the future." In a world where we so often mistake highways and cars as progress (towards what goal, I don't know) the filmmakers one interesting visualization was their take on NYC in 2030 where all of the street traffic is by bike or foot. Some stills:

It looks like rush hour. Let's take a look at the rush hour and parking facilities for various forms of dominant transportation:

Pedestrian rush hour:


Pedestrian parking:

Bicycle rush hour:

Bicycle parking:

Automobile rush hour:

Automobile parking:

Let's leave the last word to the movie: