Here’s the most interesting quote from the summary version of “It’s Time” – a document from the Mobility Pricing Independent Commission:
Defining what we mean by “congestion” is important. Congestion should be considered as extra travel time based on how ‘efficiently’ roads are used, as opposed to free-flow travel time. Reliability of travel times also need to be considered.
Isn’t “extra travel time” anything less than the time it would take in free-flow traffic? – which is how a lot of agencies and companies like Tom-Tom define it. (If not, what does “efficiently” actually mean? )
The paper is right: defining ‘congestion’ is important – especially because the commission is basing its strategy on reducing it. But if most people believe congestion is anything less than free flow, then the commission will have a credibility problem.
A century of car advertising has only reinforced the notion that the car should always be able to drive minimally at the posted speed limit – or beyond. Take a look at this CBC report on car-advertising production in Vancouver and see if you can find a single shot where the vehicle is constrained by traffic.
No other car on Lions Gate? Sure, it’s a lie. But it’s also conditioning – and that’s what the Mobility Pricing Commission should recognize.
And we haven’t even started to discuss what we mean by ‘tax.’