Traffic in Johannesburg, South Africa. Many efforts are underway to limit or ban cars in cities.
28 Aug 2022

Ljubljana, the capital of Slovenia, has transformed its historic center into a car-free paradise.

An initiative in Berlin would establish a massive car-free zone.

Many other cities, including those at a design disadvantage, are also trying to diminish car travel.

Curtailing cars cuts emissions and can increase the quality of life.

An effort now underway to establish a car-free zone bigger than Manhattan in central Berlin, a relatively dense location where 15% of the surface area is used for road traffic, just might succeed.

But what about a place like Los Angeles County, a sprawling megalopolis where a nearly equal percentage of surface area is used just for parking – on top of the hundreds of square kilometers occupied by essential roads and clogged freeways?

A legacy of planning hinged on cars has left many urban areas both disjointed and disadvantaged in terms of designing for a more sustainable future. But it’s possible to undo some of that damage.

In Los Angeles, the mayor wants to slash the driving done in the city by half over the next few decades, and has expressed interest in charging entry fees for some vehicles – similar to a scheme in London. Many local residents may be surprised to learn there’s a subway system expanding beneath their feet, and bicycle ridership has


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