September 22 is World Carfree Day, a day to recognize that we don’t have to give in to a car-dominated way of life.
The World Carfree Network provides a clearinghouse of information from around the world on how to revitalize our towns and cities and create a sustainable future. On World Carfree Day the group encourages citizens of countries throughout the world to reconsider their transportation and planning options.
Every September 22, people from around the world get together in the streets, intersections, and neighborhood blocks to remind the world that we don’t have to accept our car-dominated society.
But we do not want just one day of celebration and then a return to “normal” life. When people get out of their cars, they should stay out of their cars. It is up to us, it is up to our cities, and our governments to help create permanent change to benefit pedestrians, cyclists, and other people who do not drive cars.
While there are no World Carfree Day events listed for Portland on the official wiki, Portlanders are fortunate to live in a physical environment where carfree living is easier to enjoy than in many North American Cities.
We also have community events such as Sunday Parkways – and the last one of 2010 takes place this weekend:
The final Sunday Parkways of 2010 takes place Sunday, September 26th in Northwest Portland.
Take the opportunity to spend a pleasant (hopefully) summery Sunday morning and afternoon (10am to 3pm) winding your way on bike or foot through the mostly car free streets of Northwest, and a sliver of Southwest, Portland. [more]
You may be wondering at this point what the Low-Car Diet entails? Annually Zipcar issues a challenge: for 30 days, put down your keys, dust off your bike, trike or roller skates and find out what the Zipcar way of life is all about. In each Zipcar city a group of volunteers is selected to participate. [more]
And from the archives, I’ve collected below a few more posts to help carfree Portlanders on World Carfree Day 2010!
I’ve lived entirely or mostly car free since 2003. Over the years I’ve learned a few things, including that living in Portland car free is not actually very difficult, and you don’t have to sacrifice much. You’ll also save thousands of dollars a year. You can then spend those dollars on something more entertaining, useful, or inspiring than oil changes, gasoline, parking, and care repairs. And believe it or not, a bike is not necessary! [more]
Yesterday Portland Transport linked to a re:place Magazine article on becoming an expert transit rider. This got me thinking about some of the things I’ve learned as a TriMet trouper through the years
- Don’t take the MAX to and from events at the Rose Garden or PGE Park if there is a bus option. The trains are ridiculously packed just before and just after games. The Rose Garden is surrounded by transit. Take a bus back downtown. They’re often faster, and almost always less crowded. [more]
Recently I’ve been investigating other ways to get-out-of-town car free, and have been pleasantly surprised with the number of transit options. (Most of these services don’t provide luggage service, and the schedules are not too flexible, but that doesn’t faze the car free!) [more]