Monthly Archives: July 2014

Who wants to promote public transport?


In these results of the “Microrecensement mobilités et tranports 2010”, over 50% of individuals seem against the development of public transport. 30% are for it, unconditionaly. A minority of 10% is for its development  under certain conditions. There seems thus, to be an ideological cleavage of the for/against public transport, with a majority in disfavour of its developement. The results are strickingly independent of the residential location of individuals.

Some contradiction in opinion also show up in the statistics: most people (70%) are against more expensive public transportation in rush hours, but the same majority (60%) is favourable to cheaper  public tansportation during non-rush hours. Mathematically speaking, this amounts to the same of course. Much seems to lie in the choice of the formulation…

More data on the opinions of the population with respect to transportation policies are available here:

Ces nouveaux maires qui réintroduisent la voiture en ville

“Impossible de se garer, Monsieur le maire”. La complainte est toujours la même, qu’elle émane de commerçants qui se plaignent car “les affaires ne marchent plus comme avant” ou de professions libérales qui “n’arrivent plus à travailler”. Et le maire, nouvellement élu, cède sans tergiverser, dans l’espoir d’attirer le chaland. Le client-roi, selon une idée bien ancrée, aurait besoin de se garer devant un magasin et d’y accéder sans embouteillages pour pouvoir remplir son coffre de victuailles. Le consommateur ne vaudrait que s’il est motorisé.

Availability of Urban Functions by rail and by road, 2011

ACC_UrbanFunctions_Rail_Large ACC_UrbanFunctions_Road_Large

“Accessibility is the main ‘product’ of a transport system. It determines the locational advantage of a region relative to all regions.

Access to and availability of public and private services and functions provided in urban areas is crucial for daily life of citizens. Such services and functions are often not all offered in small towns and villages or in the countryside, and in those cases people require easy access to them in nearby cities. The higher the number of cities that can be reached from a given location in reasonable time, the more opportunities to benefit from public and private services and functions are provided as well as for economic and social activities and for general interactions.

The indicator “availability of urban functions” measures the number of cities that can be reached from any location within 60 minutes travel time. The higher the number of cities is, the higher the accessibility and thus the higher the attractiveness of a location is. Cities with at least 50,000 inhabitants are selected as destinations, assuming that only cities of that minimum size provide a full basket of public and private services and functions.”

Read more here:

Foucault’s left-overs and the urban heterostasis

… Diversified ways of expressing their localized desires must be provided to urban dwellers: not only in the form of Tweeter tweets, FaceBook likes, virtual Layar drawings or Google Maps tags,  but also in the form of billboards, stickers, material traces in the urban space, that shelter heterotopoi in the form of text, drawing, sculpture, micro-model…

All this material, however, would be meaningless if not brought together at some point in time. While it is simple, for any human individual, to dwell in heterotopia, the aim of a human city is to co-dwell with all those of which it is composed. Precisely at this point, the mapper, the statistician, and the GIS technician step in, producing classes of equivalence between aspects of imaginary places, making them comparable, opposable in a common ontology, bringing them together in a common space, transforming a complex set of heterotopoi into a unique, spatial, representation of desire, that only one further step separates from becoming an urban project…

See: Maps and Spaces » Foucault’s left-overs and the urban heterostasis.

Storymapping as the cartographic restitution of the urban mobility experience

Odysseus' Journey

The image above is just an example of the use of storymapping for a cartographic restitution of an individual’s mobility.

Other tools for this purpose:

Sensory Journeys: Mapping the spaces of mobilities

SensoryJourney SensoryJourney1

“Looking at the maps, there is clear difference between the modes of transport. The Walking Maps for both schools show a much larger number of interactions with people, plants and animals as well as as sensory events such as weather, noisees and smells. In comparison the Driving Maps show mainly buildings and sights. The experience of being driven to school appears to be like a teleport with a beginning and and end and little in between.”