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Your say – Audience discussion on the car’s future at the Sustainable Cities Round Table, 17 March

Posted in Events, Policies, Research, Sustainable Cities Round Tables, Visions by Ferne Edwards on April 1st, 2008

As part of the recent Sustainable Cities Round Table on Mobility, 17 March, our sponsors, GAMUT – The Australasian Centre for the Governance And Management of Urban Transport led a discussion with four questions about sustainable transport issues for our cities. Please find a list of the audience’s responses below. Please note: That as these questions were handwritten some of the responses were too difficult to read.

DISCUSSION QUESTION 2. What future does the car have?
infrastructure alternatives – key to facility the demise of the car. Eg. Blackburn Bicycle Trailer Trolley project. More info:
the car only has a future when it can run on renewable energy and be manufactured ie. recycled using sustainable means considering full lifecycle
individual mobility?
Internal combustion engine?
The form of vehicle will change but independent travel and the need for some vehicular travel will remain. Ie. Cuba
Hopefully minimization, movement towards distance travel, utility travel and multi-person transport
Much, much reduced IF we improve PT networks so they can truly compete with the car, in terms of reliability, efficiency, coverage, etc. Perhaps this involves changing our community structures (ie. having higher density living, more services accessible in your local area, more ‘open communities, etc.) But I think the car will still have a place – but without the internal combustion engine I hope!!!!
Long term when technology change the car will still be a sustainable mode of transport that will represent freedom for the masses. We need to start changing hearts and minds to encourage this change.
Developing alternative technology to drive cars
Idea of car wont change
Scale of space will change
Car will always have a place
Car-sharing schemes!
Emotional attachment to cars!
Car = independence and freedom
Car is morphing to our aspirations!
Decrease usage
Convert existing cars (retain embodied energy)
Purpose of car will change – recreation only
A future where the car is stigmatized
Small, green, recyclable, renewable fuel source
Highest energy efficiency possible
Operate in cities that offer mobility without cars
Where cars are slower
Slower – compressed air power compressed by solar energy
Needs a shift in culture and indentification of self with cars – we cannot sustain the scale of cars for mobility – not even biofuels sustain this – space, etc.
Complex – lighter, modular, smaller part of a more diverse system
What drives the future of the car?
Restricted/ governed/ permit
Timeshare cars for eg. Apartment block book in for access
One car per household policy
Vehicle lock out mechanism once emissions reach daily limit
Greenhouse netural/ safe/ cheaper/ special occasions
Increase in car pools
Very restricted urban car use, possible community ownership
The form of the car will change over time but the idea of the car will remain due to its connection with a sense of personal freedom

'Car pool' by Faizal Khalid