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The Uncertain Future of Autonomous Vehicles

San Diego recently held an Autonomous/Connected Vehicles Forum. The primary focus of the forum was to grapple with questions about the future- How will land use change with autonomous vehicles? How will these cars be regulated and what new policies will we need? When will CAVs…

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Tolls? Road Pricing? Options for Fighting Congestion

A recent article on the CBC begins “It turns out, the experts were right.” The experts, in this case, were transportation planners who predicted that the removal of bridge tolls in Metro Vancouver would lead to induced demand and thus greater congestion. The tolls were…

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A man drives a car with a blur of lights around him

What to do about Uber: Ride-Sharing and the Rules

Recently, London sent a shockwave through the world of transportation by denying the license renewal of ride-sharing giant Uber. Many thought Uber, despite it’s many public controversies, had become so essential to urban transportation systems that it was too big to fail. It’s scandals have ranged from spying…

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Train in an underground tunnel

Hyperloop v. High-speed Rail

As Elon Musk’s Hyperloop project moves closer to being a feasible technology, a transportation battle rages on between what will come first to the United States, high-speed rail or the Hyperloop? Which is a better option for North America and which is more likely to be built?…

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Vision Zero: The First 300 Years

According to the World Health Organization, road traffic injuries caused an estimated 1.25 million deaths worldwide in the year 2010. That is the equivalent of one person is killed every 25 seconds. In Canada, there are over 10,000 people killed or seriously injured in traffic each year.…

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future transit hubs

Designing Future Transit Hubs Today

In a world with rapidly changing transit mode shares and vehicle technologies, how do you design a transit station that works both today and long into the future? With roots in the grand traditions of railway station architecture, modern transit hubs are often massive architectural…

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redefining mobility

Redefining Mobility

Last month, mobility innovators from across North America gathered in San Ramon, California for the 3rd annual Redefining Mobility Summit. While there are no shortage of conferences and events about the future of mobility, the fact that this one is hosted by GoMentum Station, the largest…

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costa rica

Making Better Use of Costa Rica’s Public Space

Public space – parks, plazas, streets and more – is the most precious public resource a city has. The quality of a city’s public space is also an important indicator of the quality of its democracy. While Costa Rica is often considered one Latin America’s more…

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urban effects

Exploring the Urban Effects of Autonomous Vehicles

The prospect of Connected and Autonomous Vehicles (CAVs) represents a transformation in the way the world moves. CAVs will also be a significant disruptor to established practices across multiple industries. As potentially defining elements of integrated mobility systems in the cities of tomorrow, they are…

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autonomous vehicles

A Driverless Future is not just about the Cars

Every day we are inundated with news articles about a driverless future. By now, we know autonomous vehicles are coming, the question is not if but when. Yet most articles only focus on two basic topics: the technology itself and the safety concerns. Only a…

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autonomous vehicles

Preparing for Automated Vehicles

How do we prepare for the many changes that connected and autonomous vehicles (CAV) will bring to both our customers and businesses, and how can we leverage these changes for the benefit of all? This was the pressing question that many public transportation agencies were…

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mobility pedestrian walkability

Mobility to Flourish

What message does urban infrastructure send to people? Reading a recent post by Robin Mazumder, in most cities, it would be something along the lines of “we value cars, not people”. And it’s a message delivered with little empathy. Detailing the challenges he’s faced and seen while…

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**Cover image via Tech Radar

Self-Driving Cars: All that Glitters is not Gold

There has been no shortage of articles highlighting the benefits of self-driving cars. While this technology presents opportunities to enhance our cities and urban regions, many of the articles that herald the arrival of autonomous vehicles (AVs) miss the larger picture, especially concerning how the…

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Complete Streets

The Global Growth of Complete Streets

Are streets for cars or people? As the environmental, social and equity impacts of the private car on cities are better understood, a complete streets approach, which provides an alternative to car-oriented planning and design is spreading. Nowhere is the global growth of complete streets better illustrated than…

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Future Mobility

Shaping the Future of Urban Mobility

The most lucrative smart city competition to date is over, and Columbus, Ohio emerged as the winner. While they may not have won, the six other finalists also made compelling pitches. The proposals put together by all seven cities, summarized by the Washington Post, provide an…

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Columbus smart city

Smart City in the Heartland

For the past year, the US DOT prepared and promoted it’s US$40 million Smart City Challenge. Last week, they announced the winner. Beating out heavyweights like San Francisco, Austin and Denver, Columbus, Ohio won the grant, which came to US$50 million, with Vulcan‘s US$10 million contribution.…

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Trans Am Totem by Marcus Bowcott

Mobility Planning in an Era of Rapid Change

From driverless cars to the Hyperloop, significant change is coming to urban mobility. Few cities have begun to seriously address this disruptive change however. Recognizing this gap, Brooks Rainwater from the National League of Cities identifies four ways urban mobility will change: Demographic and workforce change;…

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Mobility App

Crowdsourcing Transit Predictions

Uncertainty about transit arrival is a significant challenge for attracting new transit users, but accurate real time systems, built into vehicles and stations, are costly for agencies working on tight budgets. In many cities, it’s a vicious cycle: poor service leads to fewer riders, which leads…

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Street Sign

Fixing Traffic Engineering

During the latter half of the 20th century, traffic engineering was based on the principles of “forgiving design“. Under this approach, streets were widened and curbside features were removed in the name of safety and flow. But this didn’t work, and as Better Cities &…

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Blooming Street Light in Jerusalem - Image via HQ Architects

Blooming Street Lights

Can thoughtfully designed public art contribute to increasing pedestrian safety and convenience? With advanced technologies, HQ Architects installed an interactive public art installation in Jerusalem’s Valero Square. As part of an effort to revitalize the square, the installation provides weather protection for pedestrians during sunny or rainy days and unique tram alarms…

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