In Metro Vancouver’s North Shore municipalities, even low-hanging fruit like a new bike route or an express bus lane seem to face intractable obstacles. Despite declaring a “Climate Emergency,” local councils still default to private cars when designing their cities.
Our travels to China show just how much can be accomplished when government just steps up to the plate and makes changes.
Chengdu, population 10.5 million, is the capital of the southwestern province of Sichuan, which borders Tibet, and is known for pandas and spicy food. Once you drive past Chengdu’s first ring road, you can look in any direction and see dozens of fifteen- and twenty-storey apartment blocks stretching to the horizon.
This is the kind of population density that makes complaints about densification in our own region laughable; the density in China influences transit planning and construction by a government which understands that infrastructure investment is positive (and often necessary).
Admittedly, lots of things are easier in a one-party police state, but by the same token, that doesn’t necessarily make them bad ideas.Read more »