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Steve Murray
Steve Murray
7 months ago

Why no mention of the elephant in the room – access by emergency services, or rather life-threatening delays in access? Those who revel in these LTNs may do so until the point where their house burns down, or relative dies before the ambulance can get through.

Last edited 7 months ago by Steve Murray
Christian Moon
Christian Moon
7 months ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

Haven’t you heard about the depopulation agenda? Every little helps.

Roger Tilbury
Roger Tilbury
7 months ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

Hopefully when their EVs sponateously combust….

Christian Moon
Christian Moon
7 months ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

Haven’t you heard about the depopulation agenda? Every little helps.

Roger Tilbury
Roger Tilbury
7 months ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

Hopefully when their EVs sponateously combust….

Steve Murray
Steve Murray
7 months ago

Why no mention of the elephant in the room – access by emergency services, or rather life-threatening delays in access? Those who revel in these LTNs may do so until the point where their house burns down, or relative dies before the ambulance can get through.

Last edited 7 months ago by Steve Murray
Ian McKinney
Ian McKinney
7 months ago

I use a car and a bike. I live in a city. I support more use of bikes and feet rather than cars. But LTNs and ULEZ and everything else is too much stick, not enough carrot.

Birmingham introduced cycle lanes along some of the main arterial routes, with proper infrastructure and gates. I now cycle into town almost every time, whereas before I would have been reticent about sharing the road with cars whilst I was on a bike. This was after 20+ years of not being on a bike.

You have to build the infrastructure first, and make it attractive to use a bike rather than a car, and then, and only then, can you put other measures in place to reduce car journeys.

Simon Blanchard
Simon Blanchard
7 months ago
Reply to  Ian McKinney

Spot on. If the eye watering levels of subsidy that go into air travel (for example) were applied to public transport then it could be improved to point at which it would make less sense to drive.

John Galt Was Correct
John Galt Was Correct
7 months ago

What ‘eye watering’ levels of subsidy go into air travel? The vast majority of airlines are private enterprises that live or die on their own success. Trains are buses are generally subsidised.

Simon Blanchard
Simon Blanchard
7 months ago

Their fuel is tax free.

Michael North
Michael North
7 months ago

That is not a subsidy. Perversion of the language alert!!

Michael North
Michael North
7 months ago

That is not a subsidy. Perversion of the language alert!!

Simon Blanchard
Simon Blanchard
7 months ago

Their fuel is tax free.

John Galt Was Correct
John Galt Was Correct
7 months ago

What ‘eye watering’ levels of subsidy go into air travel? The vast majority of airlines are private enterprises that live or die on their own success. Trains are buses are generally subsidised.

Andrew Dalton
Andrew Dalton
7 months ago
Reply to  Ian McKinney

You have to build the infrastructure first, and make it attractive to use a bike rather than a car, and then, and only then, can you put other measures in place to reduce car journeys.

Couldn’t agree more with this. I’ve felt for a long time that our transport infrastructure is provided on contention such that it makes the various users of it hate all the other users of it rather than the provision.

Andrew Vanbarner
Andrew Vanbarner
7 months ago
Reply to  Andrew Dalton

Here in the States, we’ve become largely unable to construct public transportation. Close to a billion was spent on a monorail in California that was never completed; In NYC, a subway line that had been planned for 70 years was recently finished, at a cost of over a billion USD per mile. The final cost of the new Lexington Ave line, including subway stops and everything else, was well over a trillion.

This is because our many layers of government and countless competing activists disrupt or destroy the actual construction process. Environmentalists insist every inch must be exhaustively studied for, and mitigated against, harm to plants or animals. Unions insist on huge numbers of unnecessary, overpaid workers. Identity warriors insist on hiring for gender, race, or ethnicity, rather than competence, and various other cronies demand their vigorish before a single jackhammer can pierce the bedrock.

My own city, Boston, recently electrified its school bus fleet. On chilly mornings these buses of course won’t run, so privately owned bus fleets belching diesel must fill the gap. Tens of millions were spent on transport that simply doesn’t work.

Public transport, much like solar panels (Solyndra) and windmills (Texas power outages) simply doesn’t work in the USA. This is largely because the people in charge of such projects have little real experience in the private sector, are beholden to equally out of touch and impractical activist groups, and view the public coffers as bottomless wells for personal enrichment. The actual transportation of human beings to their various destinations is largely besides the point, which is why public transportation – at least in most of the USA – fails.

Last edited 7 months ago by Andrew Vanbarner
Andrew Vanbarner
Andrew Vanbarner
7 months ago

I should add, I personally enjoy biking for recreation.

Insofar as a viable means of transport, I can only respond with one argument – February, a month where one is often immobilized without snowplows.

I suppose cross country skiing is an option, if one has the fitness to carry groceries on one’s back for a few miles.

Betsy Arehart
Betsy Arehart
7 months ago

And doesn’t need that many groceries.

Ted Ditchburn
Ted Ditchburn
7 months ago

Before returning to freeze to death in one’s heat pump equipped home..with gas and wood burning alike outlawed.
LTNs and ULEZ sit inside that much wider context of making life more difficult and miserable while doing nothing truly effective to actually address global warming.

Betsy Arehart
Betsy Arehart
7 months ago

And doesn’t need that many groceries.

Ted Ditchburn
Ted Ditchburn
7 months ago

Before returning to freeze to death in one’s heat pump equipped home..with gas and wood burning alike outlawed.
LTNs and ULEZ sit inside that much wider context of making life more difficult and miserable while doing nothing truly effective to actually address global warming.

Allison Barrows
Allison Barrows
7 months ago

QED Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg.

Andrew Vanbarner
Andrew Vanbarner
7 months ago

I should add, I personally enjoy biking for recreation.

Insofar as a viable means of transport, I can only respond with one argument – February, a month where one is often immobilized without snowplows.

I suppose cross country skiing is an option, if one has the fitness to carry groceries on one’s back for a few miles.

Allison Barrows
Allison Barrows
7 months ago

QED Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg.

John Galt Was Correct
John Galt Was Correct
7 months ago
Reply to  Andrew Dalton

The UK has dreadful infrastructure, whether that be for drivers, cyclists, people using trains and (apart from the new parts of Heathrow) airports too. People are like rats in a sack fighting for space. The two additional things that need to change are the concept of ‘road tax’ giving motorists the idea that they own the road, and public cycle storage so that it might still be there when you return to it (in lieu of having proper law and order because that seems a stretch for the UK).

JR Stoker
JR Stoker
7 months ago

John Galt would not have thought much to your suggestions

JR Stoker
JR Stoker
7 months ago

John Galt would not have thought much to your suggestions

odd taff
odd taff
7 months ago
Reply to  Andrew Dalton

Yes. One of the advantages of cycling is that unlike roads cycle routes don’t need to be continuous to be useful. Cyclists are capable of getting off our bikes and pushing them across awkward junctions. New routes could be made fairly cheaply though cemeteries and industrial parks by simply knocking holes in fences and walls. This is far more sensible than pinching roadspace with cycle lanes. Roads have to be constructed to take 42 ton lorries whereas a bike can run on six inches of tarmac.

Betsy Arehart
Betsy Arehart
7 months ago
Reply to  odd taff

I do hate the thought of crowds of cyclists and cycle traffic jams. One of the nice things about bicycle commuting is there weren’t that many of us!

Betsy Arehart
Betsy Arehart
7 months ago
Reply to  odd taff

I do hate the thought of crowds of cyclists and cycle traffic jams. One of the nice things about bicycle commuting is there weren’t that many of us!

Andrew Vanbarner
Andrew Vanbarner
7 months ago
Reply to  Andrew Dalton

Here in the States, we’ve become largely unable to construct public transportation. Close to a billion was spent on a monorail in California that was never completed; In NYC, a subway line that had been planned for 70 years was recently finished, at a cost of over a billion USD per mile. The final cost of the new Lexington Ave line, including subway stops and everything else, was well over a trillion.

This is because our many layers of government and countless competing activists disrupt or destroy the actual construction process. Environmentalists insist every inch must be exhaustively studied for, and mitigated against, harm to plants or animals. Unions insist on huge numbers of unnecessary, overpaid workers. Identity warriors insist on hiring for gender, race, or ethnicity, rather than competence, and various other cronies demand their vigorish before a single jackhammer can pierce the bedrock.

My own city, Boston, recently electrified its school bus fleet. On chilly mornings these buses of course won’t run, so privately owned bus fleets belching diesel must fill the gap. Tens of millions were spent on transport that simply doesn’t work.

Public transport, much like solar panels (Solyndra) and windmills (Texas power outages) simply doesn’t work in the USA. This is largely because the people in charge of such projects have little real experience in the private sector, are beholden to equally out of touch and impractical activist groups, and view the public coffers as bottomless wells for personal enrichment. The actual transportation of human beings to their various destinations is largely besides the point, which is why public transportation – at least in most of the USA – fails.

Last edited 7 months ago by Andrew Vanbarner
John Galt Was Correct
John Galt Was Correct
7 months ago
Reply to  Andrew Dalton

The UK has dreadful infrastructure, whether that be for drivers, cyclists, people using trains and (apart from the new parts of Heathrow) airports too. People are like rats in a sack fighting for space. The two additional things that need to change are the concept of ‘road tax’ giving motorists the idea that they own the road, and public cycle storage so that it might still be there when you return to it (in lieu of having proper law and order because that seems a stretch for the UK).

odd taff
odd taff
7 months ago
Reply to  Andrew Dalton

Yes. One of the advantages of cycling is that unlike roads cycle routes don’t need to be continuous to be useful. Cyclists are capable of getting off our bikes and pushing them across awkward junctions. New routes could be made fairly cheaply though cemeteries and industrial parks by simply knocking holes in fences and walls. This is far more sensible than pinching roadspace with cycle lanes. Roads have to be constructed to take 42 ton lorries whereas a bike can run on six inches of tarmac.

Simon Blanchard
Simon Blanchard
7 months ago
Reply to  Ian McKinney

Spot on. If the eye watering levels of subsidy that go into air travel (for example) were applied to public transport then it could be improved to point at which it would make less sense to drive.

Andrew Dalton
Andrew Dalton
7 months ago
Reply to  Ian McKinney

You have to build the infrastructure first, and make it attractive to use a bike rather than a car, and then, and only then, can you put other measures in place to reduce car journeys.

Couldn’t agree more with this. I’ve felt for a long time that our transport infrastructure is provided on contention such that it makes the various users of it hate all the other users of it rather than the provision.

Ian McKinney
Ian McKinney
7 months ago

I use a car and a bike. I live in a city. I support more use of bikes and feet rather than cars. But LTNs and ULEZ and everything else is too much stick, not enough carrot.

Birmingham introduced cycle lanes along some of the main arterial routes, with proper infrastructure and gates. I now cycle into town almost every time, whereas before I would have been reticent about sharing the road with cars whilst I was on a bike. This was after 20+ years of not being on a bike.

You have to build the infrastructure first, and make it attractive to use a bike rather than a car, and then, and only then, can you put other measures in place to reduce car journeys.

Andrew Raiment
Andrew Raiment
7 months ago

Our councils and planners have spent the best part of 20 years handing out planning permission to poorly designed out of town retail parks and drive thru fast food outlets. All this, while cutting back on bus services at the same time.

The jobs created are those with unsocialable hours, where a private car is essential and a newish car let alone an electric one is simply unafforable.

Care workers are having enough trouble finding parking spaces in residential areas as some commuters are parking their cars there to avoid paying for expensive parking (at railway stations) or or limited spaces at their place of work.

We are governed by idiots.

j watson
j watson
7 months ago
Reply to  Andrew Raiment

Agree with much of that AR.
Here’s one though – hospitals always had staff needing to work unsocial hours, and car usage in the past was much less. I mean most families had 1 car at best. So how did these people get to work? Probably walked, cycled, or on the bus/train. Now they drive. People prefer it, but we then don’t personally have to pay the externality costs generated.

Andrew Raiment
Andrew Raiment
7 months ago
Reply to  j watson

I suppose back then people simply lived much closer to work when there was much less development, and a society that wasn’t geared towards the car or perhaps more importantly to an all round 24/7 high churn service economy that now has a much larger/aging population (just my opinion).

.

Guy Pigache
Guy Pigache
7 months ago
Reply to  j watson

In our town the hospital was in the town centre. Recently relocated to out of town. The car parking was intentionally sized to be too little to encourage bus usage. It did not work. The car park was extended at 3x the cost of having built it the right size in the first place.

Andrew Raiment
Andrew Raiment
7 months ago
Reply to  j watson

I suppose back then people simply lived much closer to work when there was much less development, and a society that wasn’t geared towards the car or perhaps more importantly to an all round 24/7 high churn service economy that now has a much larger/aging population (just my opinion).

.

Guy Pigache
Guy Pigache
7 months ago
Reply to  j watson

In our town the hospital was in the town centre. Recently relocated to out of town. The car parking was intentionally sized to be too little to encourage bus usage. It did not work. The car park was extended at 3x the cost of having built it the right size in the first place.

j watson
j watson
7 months ago
Reply to  Andrew Raiment

Agree with much of that AR.
Here’s one though – hospitals always had staff needing to work unsocial hours, and car usage in the past was much less. I mean most families had 1 car at best. So how did these people get to work? Probably walked, cycled, or on the bus/train. Now they drive. People prefer it, but we then don’t personally have to pay the externality costs generated.

Andrew Raiment
Andrew Raiment
7 months ago

Our councils and planners have spent the best part of 20 years handing out planning permission to poorly designed out of town retail parks and drive thru fast food outlets. All this, while cutting back on bus services at the same time.

The jobs created are those with unsocialable hours, where a private car is essential and a newish car let alone an electric one is simply unafforable.

Care workers are having enough trouble finding parking spaces in residential areas as some commuters are parking their cars there to avoid paying for expensive parking (at railway stations) or or limited spaces at their place of work.

We are governed by idiots.

Jeff Butcher
Jeff Butcher
7 months ago

I’ve cycled to work all my adult life because it’s the easiest way of negotiating the mean streets of South London.
Some motorists behave like morons, but so do some cyclists.
However, there are a third more cars on the road than there were 30 years ago and a lot of them are massive 4x4s.
I agree with the author that LTNs and other schemes like this are not the solution, but they’re not the main reason you’re stuck in traffic.
Even before they were introduced South London was a massive, ugly gridlocked car park.

Last edited 7 months ago by Jeff Butcher
Stuart Sutherland
Stuart Sutherland
7 months ago
Reply to  Jeff Butcher

I agree with you. There two sides to this story. Too often the argument is from the viewpoint of the motorists. If you’re trying to cross inner cities by bicycle or public transport it’s quite a challenge. Cities and towns weren’t originally designed for motor vehicles, especially the oversized vehicles that pass for family saloons these days!

Stuart Sutherland
Stuart Sutherland
7 months ago
Reply to  Jeff Butcher

I agree with you. There two sides to this story. Too often the argument is from the viewpoint of the motorists. If you’re trying to cross inner cities by bicycle or public transport it’s quite a challenge. Cities and towns weren’t originally designed for motor vehicles, especially the oversized vehicles that pass for family saloons these days!

Jeff Butcher
Jeff Butcher
7 months ago

I’ve cycled to work all my adult life because it’s the easiest way of negotiating the mean streets of South London.
Some motorists behave like morons, but so do some cyclists.
However, there are a third more cars on the road than there were 30 years ago and a lot of them are massive 4x4s.
I agree with the author that LTNs and other schemes like this are not the solution, but they’re not the main reason you’re stuck in traffic.
Even before they were introduced South London was a massive, ugly gridlocked car park.

Last edited 7 months ago by Jeff Butcher
j watson
j watson
7 months ago

I guess the LTN are part driven by locals not wanting their streets used as rat runs? Inevitable that’ll have some opposed and other supporting. But the issue is caused by too much car traffic overall. Some of dealing with that is about alternatives including building the cycling/walking infrastructure first.
But ever been to a school near drop off time these days? Gridlock and fumes pumping out. What are we doing? Who got a lift to school when we were that age? (I’m a boomer and guess many Unherd readers similar). So some of this is about what we’ve normalised which probably also plays into other impacts on children – obesity perhaps, even just the social skills to navigate yourself to school on time.

Andrew Dalton
Andrew Dalton
7 months ago
Reply to  j watson

I walk past such a school on the way to work. I’ve actually been nearly doored on several occasions by kids jumping out of a car using the footway as a drop off.

Last edited 7 months ago by Andrew Dalton
Andrew Dalton
Andrew Dalton
7 months ago
Reply to  j watson

I walk past such a school on the way to work. I’ve actually been nearly doored on several occasions by kids jumping out of a car using the footway as a drop off.

Last edited 7 months ago by Andrew Dalton
j watson
j watson
7 months ago

I guess the LTN are part driven by locals not wanting their streets used as rat runs? Inevitable that’ll have some opposed and other supporting. But the issue is caused by too much car traffic overall. Some of dealing with that is about alternatives including building the cycling/walking infrastructure first.
But ever been to a school near drop off time these days? Gridlock and fumes pumping out. What are we doing? Who got a lift to school when we were that age? (I’m a boomer and guess many Unherd readers similar). So some of this is about what we’ve normalised which probably also plays into other impacts on children – obesity perhaps, even just the social skills to navigate yourself to school on time.

Peter Johnson
Peter Johnson
7 months ago

If they try these where I live I will definitely be going out to buy some spray paint, super glue, expanding foam, etc. It is so exciting being part of the counter culture. Fight the power!

Peter Johnson
Peter Johnson
7 months ago

If they try these where I live I will definitely be going out to buy some spray paint, super glue, expanding foam, etc. It is so exciting being part of the counter culture. Fight the power!

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
7 months ago

Interesting and powerful comparison to the Cutteslowe Walls.

I was surprised that a poll found 58% of Londoners supported LTNs. I hit the link to the Forbes article. It was so poorly written and organized, I gave up trying to understand it.

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
7 months ago

Interesting and powerful comparison to the Cutteslowe Walls.

I was surprised that a poll found 58% of Londoners supported LTNs. I hit the link to the Forbes article. It was so poorly written and organized, I gave up trying to understand it.

Allison Barrows
Allison Barrows
7 months ago

Two funny axioms leap to mind: “Pedestrians hate motorists, and motorists hate pedestrians, but everyone hates cyclists” and “ Not every *sshole owns a BMW, but every BMW owner is an *sshole”.

Michael Daniele
Michael Daniele
7 months ago

And that in turn reminds me of a joke: What’s the difference between a porcupine and a BMW?

Michael Daniele
Michael Daniele
7 months ago

And that in turn reminds me of a joke: What’s the difference between a porcupine and a BMW?

Allison Barrows
Allison Barrows
7 months ago

Two funny axioms leap to mind: “Pedestrians hate motorists, and motorists hate pedestrians, but everyone hates cyclists” and “ Not every *sshole owns a BMW, but every BMW owner is an *sshole”.

Andrew Wise
Andrew Wise
7 months ago

A thoroughly confused article – what the f… are “europhile supporters of LTNs” when they are at home? How did Brexit creep into the LTN debate.
It’s just typical petty local politicians who get a bit of power and want to bully people.

Rob C
Rob C
7 months ago
Reply to  Andrew Wise

It’s pretty obvious, isn’t it? These are the people who admire everything about the way Europe does things. Europe has LTNs, so they want Britain to have LTNs.

Rob C
Rob C
7 months ago
Reply to  Andrew Wise

It’s pretty obvious, isn’t it? These are the people who admire everything about the way Europe does things. Europe has LTNs, so they want Britain to have LTNs.

Andrew Wise
Andrew Wise
7 months ago

A thoroughly confused article – what the f… are “europhile supporters of LTNs” when they are at home? How did Brexit creep into the LTN debate.
It’s just typical petty local politicians who get a bit of power and want to bully people.

Albireo Double
Albireo Double
7 months ago

The Cutteslowe Wall was in North Oxford – not East Oxford! Facts matter.

The location in North Oxford was most of the reason why the wall was built, and most of the story at the time.

Last edited 7 months ago by Albireo Double
Albireo Double
Albireo Double
7 months ago

The Cutteslowe Wall was in North Oxford – not East Oxford! Facts matter.

The location in North Oxford was most of the reason why the wall was built, and most of the story at the time.

Last edited 7 months ago by Albireo Double
Ian Cooper
Ian Cooper
7 months ago

Cambridge now has some quite decent cycle lanes on most main roads coming into the city and it does encourage the cyclist.

Ian Cooper
Ian Cooper
7 months ago

Cambridge now has some quite decent cycle lanes on most main roads coming into the city and it does encourage the cyclist.