chapter  1
16 Pages

Mobility and the interchange

Mobility does not have to be based on cars and on fossil fuels. Electrical energy produced from wind, solar and nuclear instal lations powers high-speed trains across Europe, and diesel used for many of the buses in Latin America and Asia comes from biofuels. Walking and cycling depend solely on human muscle energy produced by metabolism with only limited fossil fuel consequences. Hence, the totality of the mobility debate touches upon questions of energy use, access, equality and health. Put another way, urban transporta tion is as much about sustainable development as it is about the popular debate surrounding the greening of cities and lowenergy architectural design. The major means of getting around are walking, cycling, car, taxi, bus, tram, train and aircraft. In reality we use some or all these modes often in conjunction with a single journey from home to work. Combining modes of travel raises the question of interconnection – of moving

smoothly and efficiently from one type of transport to another. Here, the transport interchange comes into its own. The inter - change recognises the interdependency of modern urban life – the plurality and complexity that underpin the contemporary situation. However, functional separation of land uses and their supporting transport modes, which was the mantra of modernism, has left a great deal of inefficiency and redundancy in our cities.