Day: March 26, 2016

Cars, Shared Streets, and Lovable Cities

I know I’m in Rome to think (and learn) about architecture and preservation (past and future), but recently my thoughts turned to cars. There’s a connection here.  Trust me. If you need a car in Rome, you can find one.  We’ve taken taxis on several occasions, and from those rides I can attest that there are no shortages of cars on the street.  But the interesting thing – from my perspective – is how the cars and their drivers interact with others who share the street: pedestrians (of which there are many), cyclists, motorcycle riders, street vendors, buskers, and patrons at outdoor cafe tables. Rome’s transportation patterns are somewhere between the very rational (and orderly) Copenhagen model, and the free-for-all that is New Delhi. Probably a little closer to Delhi, truth be told. Traveling in Rome is a dance, and cars are not privileged in the way they are in the United States.  (We have changed our cities and planned our suburbs in a way that deifies cars, instead of supports people.) While there are …