Vision from 2050
Walking & Cycling
In ConnectedCities to walk or cycle is the norm because they are the easiest options. Covered walkways run to the pedshed centre and in older towns have been retrofitted. Pavements have protection from the elements - canopies, walls, fences, trees and hedges – and main roads are easy to cross. Moving walkways speed pedestrian flows when required, particularly at interchanges and in city centres. Roads and surfaced paths are available to cyclists and small traffic as well as pedestrians, and are well engineered, lit, signed and well used. Bicycle hire schemes have docking stations everywhere.
A ConnectedTown has on-demand public transport that is always available and can be used without waiting. Personal Rapid Transport are small auto-driving pods which operate like taxis. They run mainly on roads. Battery powered podcars recharge while waiting to pick up passengers. PRT is used to link key destinations (stations, shopping centres, employment). The routes generally avoid the main roads and are often loops. Taxis, mostly driverless, are summoned by mobile phone. Microcabs are slower than taxis, only carry one or two people but are cheaper and use paths as well as roads
Bus routes are usually cross-city or cross-town, calling at town centres and stations. Those serving ConnectedCity villages run at least every ten minutes, day and evening, and also provide links to the older settlements in the ConnectedCity hinterland.
Non-polluting city cars and buggies are widely used and every family house has a parking space for one. For ordinary cars and vans driving around a ConnectedTown is easy, but speed limits on the mainly shared streets make it slow. However, after parking a protected walkway leads to one’s destination. Congestion charges discourage driving at busy times, and as other modes are easy most people use cars only for shopping and leisure. The main beneficiaries of congestion charges are people who need their car or van for work.