Tuesday, 20 August 2019

escalator to nowhere

Having gleaned no lessons learned from other municipalities like Berlin and Barcelona—not to mention the panoply of remorseful cities in the US—who count their decision to open up their thoroughfares among their biggest miscalculations, this week Wiesbaden allowed the installation of e-scooter stations that one can rent via a smartphone platform and abandon anywhere.  It’s not so much the question of liability and the potential for bodily harm to the operator and cross-traffic that bothers me so much but rather the gimmickry of it all, the luring away of people content to walk and take mass-transit otherwise and the greenwashing that belies the considerable infrastructure and how very smart people are lapping it up. “Well sir, there’s nothing on Earth like a genuine, bonafide, electrified six-car monorail. What’d I say?” That’s one way I suppose to get your town on the map.