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The Forum > Article Comments > Smart transport policy takes a back seat > Comments

Smart transport policy takes a back seat : Comments

By Leighton Haworth, published 21/6/2013

Recently announced transport funding priorities from both sides of politics do little to reverse our historical reliance on roads and cars for economic prosperity.

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Parker Alan OAM,
I agree. Our transport networks need to involve a diverse range of options to extend this opportunity to participate to all members of society.

The problem is that the big trends shaping transport in the next 50 years will come from Asia. Electric bicycles, cars, buses, trams and and trucks which are essential for sustainable transport globally. China is now mass producing electric bicycles and scooters which has already changed the way Chinese people commute and are sell to over 100 countries. China and has initiated the process of mass producing, cars, buses, commercial vehicles to reduce the poisonous air pollution in their cities and to adjacent countries. Japan has been and still is this E-vehicle revolution . Perhaps Australia sleeps.

The experiment with electric bicycles has been so successful that the Chinese government hopes to do the same with e-motor cycles, e-cars, e-buses and e-trucks .The production of electric bicycles in China stood at 27 million units in 2010, is predicted to rise to 40 million by 2015 and could rise to 160 million in 2020. In China this explosive development has created new planning opportunities, both in terms of traffic regulation, pollution control, reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and the use of solar cell charging of all electric or hybrid vehicles vehicle. With the efficient production of electric 2, 3, 4 and 6 wheelers, that is linked with the more innovative use of sustainable solar and wind energy energy sources, this is already creating a fourth industrial revolution in China. , Taiwan and South Korea, and hopefully in time India.

Japan was the innovator that invented, in 1989, the first automatic electric bicycle (Pedelec) and exported the production knowhow into China. Japan has also pioneered the development of electric cars and hybrid cars and inseminated that technology into the rest of Asia.
Posted by PEST, Friday, 21 June 2013 11:23:18 AM
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What are they teaching then in Universities these days? It certainly looks like dogma rules & thinking is the last requirement.

Tell me Leighton, what world do you live in? It can't be the one I know.

How many people do nothing but go to work, & back home again, with no diversions? How many have little things like child care, or school pick up to do on the way? And how many have a bit of shopping etc. that has to be done?

Now I can see someone traveling to QUT could think everyone can get to their destination by public transport, but that & the inner city is a very small percentage of the destinations. Most people could not get from home to work in one public transport vehicle, & if side trips are required like pick up of kids, it is likely to be 3 or 4 changes. It would be nice if you used some real life comparison for your examples. Are Denmark or the Netherlands much bigger than the greater Sydney catchment area? I doubt they is in real effect.

Old cities that grew with workers walking to work can be public transport friendly, but modern ones with wide spread & diverse living & working areas just don't work. I could have got to work in 2.5 hours with 4 changes, but would have had to leave by 2.45PM to get the last transport home.

Please try some real thinking, rather than reproducing dog eared planning dogma, & try again. Reproducing some tired old academics aging course notes is not really good enough for an aspiring young man.
Posted by Hasbeen, Friday, 21 June 2013 2:24:09 PM
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Hasbeen, I agree. What a simplistic idea Leighton has put forward, and so lacking in depth. Like you, it would take me hours to get to a specialist appointment in the city using public transport, not to mention having to hoof it as well through lack of integrated services. Not least of which are buses not running on time due to our rapidly swelling population and the increasing number of cars on the roads.
We have built dormitory suburbs, and neglected to put manufacturing facilities alongside so that people could live and work locally. Instead our cities sprawl out ever further.
Smaller communities should have been planned along these small town lines, with major road and rail facilities connecting them. Then for local travel, bicycles, or mini buses would get people from A to B. Presently we have buses and trains which are filled to capacity at rush hour, and running virtually empty the rest of the day.
We have sprawling carparks for train commuters - all full by 7a.m.- because we need a car to get to the train. And multi storey undercover parking seems to have been overlooked by planners too.
Goodness knows what they teach in Uni's these days, but it sure isn't commonsense.
Posted by worldwatcher, Friday, 21 June 2013 11:32:24 PM
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The claim there is no great need for road projects in any Australian city is absurd. In Sydney, there is a desperate need for several motorway projects, notably the Connex West and F3 to M4 projects. These projects aren't just about private cars but also freight. Sydney's roads are clogged with trucks thanks to several missing road links.
The idea of relying on public and active transport to get around requires the transformation of Australia's cities. Referring to transport planning in European cities is irrelevant as our cities are very different and many Australians like living in suburbs in a detached house.
Posted by Anthony P, Saturday, 22 June 2013 6:52:30 AM
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Have to agree with Hasbeen!
We will always need the car and roads in a land as vast and largely empty as ours.
we should build the world's best car, and then export it to the rest of the world; in order to create the economies of scale needed for that very outcome.
That car is a CNG powered electric car, that utilises a much lighter inboard solid state ceramic fuel cell as opposed to around half a ton of expensive lithium ion batteries.
Moreover, refuelling done in just minutes, not an overnight recharge!
The energy coefficient of 72%, of the gas powered ceramic cell, makes this particular combination, the most fuel efficient in the world.
Ground hugging aerodynamics, and the lowest centre of gravity, the safest!
The torque of electric motors, and their ability to safely rev past 10,000 RPM, would confer power to weight ratio acceleration superior to V8's/V10's/V12's!
And given the exhaust product of the gas powered ceramic cell is mostly water vapour, the most desirable in communities that suffer extreme smog. Huge markets!
We currently lead the world in moulded carbon fibre construction.
Limited to a single chassis initially, upon which can be mounted three variants on a theme. A car, a station wagon and a ute.
All vehicles could be stretched, with an extra set of driving wheels added, if additional power/load carrying capacity is required, motor homes/military market?
The addition of carbon nano tubes and grapheal; the world's strongest materials, enough bullet/explosion proof protection, without ever compromising the lightweight construction characteristics?
One can even envisage a mass produced moulded carbon fibre luxury upmarket jet propelled motor boat, with the same components providing the drive, inboard comforts and protection.
Endless free hot water, endless filtered drinking water, ceramic cell/electric air conditioning and cooking. Satnav autopilot, DVD, sonar, fish finders, etc. And an ability to perform very rapidly, in just a couple of inches of water!
A solar panel paint job, enough to also provide limp home and survival aspects?
Posted by Rhrosty, Sunday, 23 June 2013 12:29:37 PM
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Good point Anthony P, much forgotten by these planners.

Even into the 60s in Sydney, & other cities, most products were distributed from the city. In Sydney it was York, Clarence & Kent streets that were the warehouses of the city. Workers travel & distribution was along those spokes that were the main radial roads. Today distribution comes from everywhere else but there.

It is not just factories & warehouses that should be scattered throughout the suburbs but government as well. There is absolutely no reason for most public servants to be in the city at all. Those ridiculous office buildings should be converted to accommodation fro those poor souls who may want to live in the city, & bureaucrat working accommodation spread moved to where most people live.

So many problems could be cured by this one simple action, it is never likely to happen. Without the dally catastrophe of the commute, we would need less planners.
Posted by Hasbeen, Sunday, 23 June 2013 1:50:22 PM
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