Project Bordeaux Car Free 2034, Créasud (2014)
We are obsessed by the automobile to the point that it is so ingrained in our culture that we cannot imagine life without it.
We sit in our cars, bumper to bumper, stuck in urban congestion, devoid and disconnected from the world around us.
We accept the wasted time, noise, pollution and stress caused by trying to drive in the city. We barely question any alternatives.
Once parked, we can hardly see the beautiful city architecture created by our predecessors because of the visual clutter from rows of ungainly plastic scooters and battered cars blocking the city vista.
We all know and accept that the situation has to change, but how to go about it?
Can we intelligently live without the car in our cities?
Real Projects Happening Today
Other European cities have set targets to be car free or carbon free.
Hamburg, the second largest city in Germany, wants to be car free for 2034 with 7000Ha dedicated to bicycle use, pedestrians and public transport.
Copenhagen in Denmark is developing 26 so-called “bicycle super-highways” leading from the city centre to the outskirts.
There are less ambitious projects happening in most big cities around the world, but they still imagine cohabiting with the “car”.
Thinking Outside Of The Box
The city planners imagine bicycle lanes, public transport and walking as the mobility solutions in our future car-free cities.
But how about the old and the young who can't use a bicycle, the mother with a pushchair, the pizza delivery boy, or those who have trouble walking?
Can you really imagine walking around a 70 square km area in winter?
Why are we not imagining other mobility solutions?
Bordeaux is already a reference in France for its use of Tramways, developing pedestrian zones and delocalising part of the centre to the riverbanks.
The question is, can we go much further and imagine Bordeaux car-free?
The Brief To The Students
To imagine Bordeaux car-free in 2034.
Imagined through the eyes of a Designer (and not city planners), the students were asked to research, identify, target and propose solutions to allow Bordeaux to be car-free for all of its inhabitants and not just the fit and able.
Based on user scenarios, the students we tasked to “live” the reality of commuting in and around Bordeaux, to identify the real needs and come up with tangible solutions, which dramatically improve the quality of life of the inhabitants.
They were asked to imagine a progressive implementation of solutions.
What can we do to improve the situation in *2, 5, 10, 15 and finally 20 years time?
Do we need special vehicles, technologies or services?
Can the Gironde play a part in the solution?
*With the LGV Sud-Ouest operational in 2016, how can we in the first instance improve the “Last-Mile Dilema” when arriving in Gare Saint-Jean?