Transforming Urban Transport- The Role of Political Leadership


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Publications on the Vienna Case Study

TUT-POL's Vienna case study writers, Ralph Buehler and John Pucher, have published two articles based on their research of the Vienna case study for TUT-POL. One article was written along with TUT-POL Advisory Board Chair Alan Altshuler in the International Journal of Sustainable Transportation (Taylor & Francis) titled, "Vienna's Path to Sustainable Transport." The second article, published in the Transport Reviews Journal is titled, "Reducing Car Dependence in the Heart of Europe: Lessons from Germany, Austria and Switzerland."

Below are the abstracts for both as well as links to the full articles online. 



Vienna, Austria reduced the car share of trips by a third between 1993 and 2014: from 40% to 27%. The key to Vienna's success has been a coordinated package of mutually reinforcing transport and land-use policies that have made car use slower, less convenient, and more costly, while improving conditions for walking, cycling, and public transport. During 32 in-person interviews in Vienna in May 2015, a wide range of politicians, transport planners, and academics almost unanimously identified the expansion of the U-Bahn (metro) and parking management as the most important policies accounting for the reduction in car mode share since 1993. Implementation of sustainable transport policies in Vienna has been a long-term, multi-staged process requiring compromises, political deals, and coalition-building among political parties and groups of stakeholders. This consensual approach to policy development has been time-consuming. Vienna has not been the first city to introduce any particular policy, but it has masterfully adopted successful policies from other cities. The continuity of social democratic governments in Vienna since 1945 has provided a crucial political basis for long-term implementation. The Greens have vigorously pushed for accelerating implementation of sustainable transport policies since becoming part of the ruling coalition government in 2010. The progressive political environment in Vienna has been essential to its increasingly sustainable transport system. Other major cities in Western Europe have also reduced the share of trips by car since 1990. Together with Vienna, they provide useful lessons for other cities throughout the world on how to reduce car dependence.

Link to full article: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/15568318.2016.1251997 



Munich, Berlin, Hamburg, Vienna, and Zurich – the largest cities in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland – have significantly reduced the car share of trips over the past 25 years in spite of high motorisation rates. The key to their success has been a coordinated package of mutually reinforcing transport and land-use policies that have made car use slower, less convenient, and more costly, while increasing the safety, convenience, and feasibility of walking, cycling, and public transport. The mix of policies implemented in each city has been somewhat different. The German cities have done far more to promote cycling, while Zurich and Vienna offer more public transport service per capita at lower fares. All five of the cities have implemented roughly the same policies to promote walking, foster compact mixed-use development, and discourage car use. Of the car-restrictive policies, parking management has been by far the most important. The five case study cities demonstrate that it is possible to reduce car dependence even in affluent societies with high levels of car ownership and high expectations for quality of travel.

Link to full article: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/01441647.2016.1177799

Antya WaegemannComment