An international exhibit on sustainable transportation opens today in New York titled “Our Cities Ourselves,” a joint program of the Institute for Transportation and Development policy and the AIA Center for Architecture.
Sustainability has become a wide-ranging term inclusive of many concepts related to the ability to endure, whether pertaining to ecosystems, consumption of natural resources and energy, urban planning, and other topics and disciplines.
This new exhibit is noteworthy because it pertains to the planning for economic, environmental, and social sustainability of transportation in ten of the most fascinating cities around the world which have already proven to be leaders in innovation in sustainable transport.
The exhibit includes images and 3-D models of urban neighborhoods as they are envisioned in 2030 alongside photos of how they look today.
Even more exciting, ten of the world’s leading architects have been working for the past year to demonstrate how each city is “fertile ground” for further transformation in large-scale sustainability.
The proposed projects are as different from each other as the cities are themselves. By 2030, 60% of the global population (5 billion people) will be living in urban areas, mostly in developing nations. It is fascinating to see how various architects have envisioned sustainable transport in Ahmedabad, Budapest, Buenos Aires, Dar es Salaam, Guangzhou, Jakarta, Johannesburg, Mexico City, New York, and Rio de Janeiro.
The Metro Library provides appropriate resources on timely topics such as sustainability. Our website features up-to-the-minute dynamic bibliographies of selected transportation topics, including sustainability in transportation, from a variety of sources, including:
The U.S. National Transportation Library: The NTL maintains and facilitates access to statistical and other information needed for transportation decision-making at the Federal, State and local levels. In 2008, the NTL was re-launched through a merger with the U.S. Department of Transportation Library, serving both government agencies and the general public
The WorldCat database: The world’s largest network of library content and services, allowing you to search the collections of libraries in your area and thousands more around the world for relevant information in every imaginable format, including books, audiovisual materials, scholarly articles, and digital resources
Metro’s Dorothy Peyton Gray Transportation Library Catalog: Our own online catalog containing records for our extensive holdings which include over 45,000 books, reports, studies, conference proceedings, plans, maps, drawings, and other items
We are committed to providing the most appropriate resources within the scope of our collection areas, as well as improving both access and “findability.” We will continue to develop our current bibliographies for selected transportation topics resources as the field of transportation research evolves and as we move forward with our own related Measure R projects.
Responding appropriately to the needs of our staff and public users is a measure of sustainability in and of itself.
Back in New York, architect Michael Sorkin says that the streets were laid out by the Dutch in a fundamentally “Medieval” pattern…not made for cars.” His vision is for many more pedestrians and bicycles, and very few cars. He proposes tearing down the lower part of FDR Drive, which runs along the east side of Manhattan. Sound implausible? He states “A year ago, nobody thought you could close Broadway, but suddenly it’s closed, and everyone loves it.”
An all-day symposium titled “Architects, Developers, and Transport Planners on the Future of the City” will be held Saturday, June 26 to continue to discussion of this important and timely topic. The exhibit is on display through September 11, 2010 at the Center for Architecture Gallery before moving on to other cities around the world.