Alternative Transport Policies in Poland
STOCZKIEWICZ M, Polish Ecological Club, Poland
The countries in transition are in a special situation, in that they are experiencing a huge increase in road traffic, combined with a fast decline of rail and public transport. Another aspect of the special situation is that these countries still have a
The countries in transition are in a special situation, in that they are experiencing a huge increase in road traffic, combined with a fast decline of rail and public transport. Another aspect of the special situation is that these countries still have a chance to avoid getting stuck in the quagmire of over-dependance on road transport, with the well known negative consequences. Countries in transition can learn not only from the Western European countries situation, but also from the current developments in the Cohesion countries, where the trend towards one-sided (road-oriented) investments has just set in, and environmental and social problems are just developing. If the countries from the CEE region aspiring to become EU members are forced to go through the same traditional way of enlargement, we will not be able to use our existing possibilities. Consequently we will find ourselves stuck in the same trap that many western countries are in, where it is too late to protect anything and the destroyed public transport or rail systems have to be rebuilt now, sometimes even from scratch.
At the moment we face a few similar trends in transport, appearing in most of the countries in the CEE reNon. They are among others: rapid increase in motor-vehicle traffic, and decrease in the funds devoted to the expansion and maintenance of public transport, which brings about continuous deterioration of the latter. On the other hand a shift to individual and freight automobile transport is being supported by growing investments in its environmentally and socially damaNng infrastructure. The current ideas on transport development come mainly from politicians, governments, and the pro-motor-vehicle lobby. It is also true that for our societies in the CEE reNon owning a car is still a status symbol and people are being convinced, by aggessive advertising in the media for example, that there is no other convenient way of travelling. This approach needs a lot of work to be changed.
h1.LAND USE AND THE NEW URBANISM
Association for European Transport