Will cities eventually leave cars behind? Recently people experienced the longest traffic jam in history, in China, reputed to be 62 miles long and lasting 12 days. It was caused by trucks hauling coal to Beijing. Soon Beijing is expected to have 7 million cars. Is this the preferred future?
Other cities are asking whether cars could or should be limited – it’s not a new idea but gaining traction in just the last couple of years. A recent example is Charlotte where the struggle is on between building more roads, and shifting to a more walkable and compact urban form.
It is the latter design that will win out in the long run. It’s more human oriented, and emerging social technologies and developments such as the sharing economy and eventually autonomous vehicles that decrease the need for so many cars will win out. At least in cities that wish to be leaders.