Zurich's a city for people: "You are invited to the city, but your car is not" (video)

Zurich tramways
Screen capture SF

Rest of the world, take notes!

Zurich, the largest city in Switzerland, is a gem like Amsterdam and Copenhagen, and it should be studied by other cities so that "best practices" can be learned and imported ("great artists steal", as they say; there are no bonus points for originality when it comes to making better cities, just copy what has been shown to work). It is often ranked at or very near the top of the list in 'quality of life' studies, and once you see how people there live, it's easy to see why. They have consciously designed a very efficient and effective interlocking multi-modal transit system (trains, buses, trams, etc) that allows people to go anywhere without needing a car, and they've made sure to effectively use the space that they have rather than give it all away to motorists as road and parking space. In fact, they went as far as capping the number of parking spaces back in 1996 to ensure that the city remained designed for people and not for cars.

The proof is in the pudding. This system works so well that 32% of citizens use trams and other forms of transit to get around...

Zurich transitSF/Screen capture

...and an impressive 42% walk and/or bike!

Zurich transitSF/Screen capture

Our friend Clarence went to Zurich and shot this great, truly-worth-watching film that is bound to inspire urban planners everywhere to get it together and start designing truly livable cities (hopefully). Check it out:

Via Streetfilms

Tags: Bike-Friendly World | Bikes | Transportation


treehugger slideshows