Jeff Wood
Urban Reads

Helsinki Reinvents Urban Transportation

All the city news you can use.

By - Jul 23rd, 2018 12:52 pm
A tram in Helsinki. Photo is in the Public Domain.

A tram in Helsinki. Photo is in the Public Domain.

Every day at The Overhead Wire we sort through over 1,500 news items about cities and share the best ones with our email list. At the end of the week, we take some of the most popular stories and share them with Urban Milwaukee readers. They are national (or international) links, sometimes entertaining and sometimes absurd, but hopefully useful.

Helsinki is the center of transportation’s future: Helsinki Finland is the first city in the world to offer mobility as a service. The companies that offer subscriptions see the value of trying it out in the city because of its size and nature, but also need a lot more subscribers to be sustainable. (Bloomberg)

Redesigning the “For Sale” sign: For the first time in 50 years, the residential real estate sign has been redesigned. The purpose? To bring them into the digital age so that much more information can be obtained than on a simple sign. (Fast Company)

The myth of street balance: Have you ever been in a public meeting and been told that balance needs to be maintained when suggesting active transportation improvements on roads? Often the suggestion to maintain balance means catering to cars and not taking existing space from them. John Riecke goes deeper into how “balancing” the streets in the current way have unbalanced our neighborhoods. (Streetsblog Denver)

Don’t call them parks: Over the last ten years New York City has reorganized the landscape of streets. 74 pedestrian plazas have taken back 30 acres of space from automobiles and the data bears out that they’ve been a success for safety as well. As the idea is replicated around the world, there’s hope that cities can be places for people. (New York Times)

Housing and rent is becomming political: As rents go up and ordinary Americans are hit by the effects, politicians are starting to think of the ways that relief can be served. Some are calling for vacancy decontrol and expansions of rent stabilization. In California voters will decide on rent control laws for the whole state. And while the arguments for and against rent control continue unabated by economists, the rent continues to rise. (New Republic)

Quote of the Week

Yet growing up in that environment impressed upon me that pretty much everything can be made and fixed by regular people. It helped me appreciate how the world hangs together — how a building stands up, how electricity gets to the outlet, how water gets in the kitchen sink and out of a flooded basement.

Shannon Mattern discusses growing up in and around the hardware store. (Places Journal)

This Week on Talking Headways: Highways and Partisanship with Stanford Professor Clayton Nall

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One thought on “Urban Reads: Helsinki Reinvents Urban Transportation”

  1. Terry says:

    Helsinki is wonderful. Been there many times. However their transportation system has got nothing on Wisconsin’s Scott-holes!
    Thanks Walker!

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