• Taking the bull by the horns: Urban transport in Europe

    This is a report from the T&E seminar, “Taking the bull by the horns: What can Europe do about urban transport?”

    The first section examines “The Problems.” The damage which urban transport causes to the environment and society is well-known. For this reason the first section examines barriers to achieving sustainable urban transport, rather than making a traditional list of the problems. Lack of political commitment is singled out as the most important barrier.

    Subsidiarity is one of the key issues facing European decision-making for urban transport. The second examines the basis of the subsidiarity principle, going into what subsidiarity means for urban transport in Europe, and looks at the political reality within which it is applied.

    The “Realities across Europe” section looks briefly at three cities. In Tallinn EU money is being used to fund urban infrastructure; which, together with intensive marketing of the private car, is helping to cause a decline in public transport usage. Copenhagen and Vienna tried to emulate the other’s success in promoting sustainable transport modes, but succeeded only in changing their relative share of cycling and public transport: nobody shifted out of their cars in either city, emphasising the importance of clarity on the end-goal