TOP 10 UITP.org articles in 2015

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As chosen by our readers.

We have had quite an interesting year for public transport in 2015, marked by the continuous upsurge of its usage. As always, in our news section on UITP.org we publish articles on what makes public transport great, what new and innovative mobility solutions are shaping the world and what kind of concepts can be implemented.

We look back at the top 10 articles from 2015 and we invite you to continue to follow our public transport coverage in 2016 as well.

#10: Free-floating car sharing: A flexible alternative to the private car?

The 10th most read article on UITP.org in 2015 looked at the many projects for car sharing that exist around the world, and have the potential, complemented by public transport, to decongest major urban areas.

For many city dwellers, owning a car can be a major hassle. You may use your car only occasionally, yet still have to fight through daily traffic jams and shell out a fortune for parking on top of your monthly petrol and insurance payments.  Thankfully, new mobility solutions are emerging in many cities.

#9:  UITP Awards finalists announced: Rewarding the best in Public Transport

The UITP World Congress and Exhibition in Milan in June saw the presentation of the biennial Global Public Transport Awards, where a number of public transport projects were rewarded for their capacity of advancing the sector. This story presented the list of projects that made it past the jury.

An international jury of public transport experts evaluated the projects from a variety of different companies and organisations, including national, regional and local governments and authorities, industry, researchers and investors, among others.

#8: Stop the sprawl, getting planning right from the start

In February, we focused on the attractiveness of cities and urban planning and we kicked it off with a brief history of urban planning.

Throughout the course of history transport systems, whether public or car related, have always had a great influence over urban development patterns. Public transport-oriented development at the end of the 19th and early 20th centuries created city centres that were dense and compact whilst outward development was primarily structured along tramways and metropolitan railway lines.

#7: 7 Things we learned from Jean Christophe Victor’s “Future” speech at UITP

Jean Christophe Victor is probably best known for his Arte TV show that roughly translates from French as “Beyond the maps”. He is the founder of the Centre for Political Studies and Cartographic Analysis in Paris. In a nutshell, he loves maps and he loves exploring what they can reveal.

He was the keynote speaker at the 2014 UITP New Year Reception in Brussels and we took a look at his predictions for the future of mobility.

Decisions about public transport can have repercussions that last for decades, so the public transport sector has to be more forward-thinking than most. Here are seven predictions from Jean Christophe Victor’s presentation that made us think…

#6: The Economic Impact of Public Transport

In January we dedicated an entire month to analysing the economic impact of public transport. The focus article condensed that information and looked at the essential role of public transport for a healthy urban economy.

Cities are the powerhouses of the economy, concentrating 80% of world economic output and more than 50% of the world’s inhabitants. Whilst the social advantages of public transport are well known, the economic benefits, particularly for cities, are less well documented. 

#5: Bus Rapid Transit: A World Panorama

Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) has been a hot topic in the past decade, prompted by the trebling of the world network mileage of these systems. This piece, based on information from the 2015 Public Transport Trends report, looked at the developments in the sector and painted a global picture of where these systems are located and what the future holds for them.

Worldwide, there is growing interest in buses and BRT is enjoying increasing popularity. This transport mode is considered by some within the transport industry as a new infrastructure panacea because of its flexibility but also its relatively low cost.

#4: Can Driver Assistance systems make LRT safer?

This story looked at the potential of safer light rail because of driver assistance systems, in the context of a workshop that UITP organised on the same theme. It took good practices from the light rail operator in Frankfurt and talked about two tests for these types of systems in Germany.

Driver assistance systems (DAS) have made a breakthrough in the automotive sector; today, some vehicles on our roads use them for distance warning or collision avoidance. Progress in this area has gone as far as the design of prototype driverless cars.

#3: Where the car is no longer king

The car is still king in many urban areas around the world, but some cities, like Paris, Madrid and Brussels to name a few have made important steps in the attempt to remove them from city centres and not only. This article looks at some urban planning and gives a couple of tips on how other cities can make successful mobility plans.

Walking around a newly-pedestrianised city centre can have a striking effect – as the residents and visitors of cities like MilanMadridDublinBrussels and Paris are likely to agree. Where are the exhaust fumes, the tail-to-tail queues, and the noisy stop-start of engines that have typified so many European cities since the dawn of the automobile?

After a long period of car dominance, cities are rediscovering the needs of pedestrians, and recent large-scale pedestrianisation schemes in major European cities have been re-routing dense traffic beyond the city centre.

#2: Six Simple Rules for Transport Planning

In this article from March 2015 we looked at factors that can better integrate public transport into the urban planning of a city.

Cities are the engines of the economy, the bedrock of our culture and - for 90% of us - the places we live and work. After over a century of urban planners prioritizing the mobility of motor vehicles over other forms of transport, our cities have become ever more congested, polluted and noisy, as well as less healthy and pleasant.

Nowadays, there is an increasing movement towards developing sustainable urban neighborhoods by including smart public transport planning from the very beginning. We list five crucial rules urban planners, policy-makers and local authorities should take into consideration to make these a reality:

#1:  It’s a wrap – Another year, another successful Congress & Exhibition...

At the end of the 2015 UITP World Congress and Exhibition in Milan we looked at what were the main topics, the trend setters, the innovations and discussions that marked this large event.

The UITP World Congress & Exhibition has just wrapped up in Milan, as UITP says arrivederci to more than 2,200 delegates, 280 exhibitors and nearly 300 journalists. The biennial congress and exhibition is a mélange of business executives, bus and rail giants, policy watchers, bureaucrats, and technology trendsetters.

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