A recent news report from the Chilean news outlet Meganoticias indicates that the use of bicycles has doubled since the protests started in the middle of October this year. The protests, kindled partly because of the increase on public transportation fares, have resulted in the partial closing of the subway service. This and other factors have had an important impact in urban mobility within Santiago de Chile.
Tomás Exhiburú, a Chilean architect, measured the number of cyclists on one of the busiest streets in Santiago. On Monday, October 20th, 892 cyclists used the Ricardo Lyon bike route per hour, when two months before the number was 450. Since then, Tomás Exhiburú and his team have verified the architects’ initial research.
The architect and his team are looking for ways to expand and make the use of bicycles safer, as well as to figure out new ways of transportation in these times of crisis. There is a call for people in Santiago to fill out an online survey aimed to gather mobility data and preferences.
The Slovenian philosopher Slavoj Žižek believes that acts of social discontent such as the protests in Chile are symptoms of our times and they are not going anywhere. In fact, they seem to be here to stay will continue to spread across countries.
The original article by Meganoticias on the doubling of bicycle use can be found here.
In case you were wondering, this is Tomás Exhiburú’s Twitter handle: @tomasechiburu He is constantly informing about the latest developments on the protests in Santiago de Chile.
The International Association for the History of Transport, Traffic and Mobility (T2M) is currently planning to incorporate in its website a list of course syllabi/syllabuses related to the history and general studies of mobility (in this round, English syllabi only). Our aim is to publicise the teaching of mobility studies, assist in improving the standard of such studies and facilitate its introduction to a wider range of academic institutions.
We would like to request you to kindly send us a copy of your mobility history/studies course syllabi, in the form of an email attachment (MS Word or PDF format) to Hiroki Shin (hiroki.shin[at]york[dot]ac[dot]uk), if you are currently giving such courses at an academic Continue reading →
Georg Simmel (1858-1918) was a sociologist of the urban environment who wrote (among other essays) the essay “The Metropolis and Mental Life,” where he in effect describes the modern urbanized consciousness: “The psychological basis of the metropolitan type of individuality consists in the intensification of nervous stimulation which results from the swift and uninterrupted change of outer and inner stimuli” (original emphasis).
Simmel continues: “Lasting impressions, impressions which differ only slightly from one another, impressions which take a regular and habitual course and show regular and habitual contrasts–all these use up, so to speak, less consciousness than does the rapid crowding of changing images, the sharp discontinuity in the grasp of a single glance, and the unexpectedness of onrushing impressions. These are the psychological conditions which the metropolis creates.”
–in a sense, Simmel was an early forerunner of more contemporary urban theorists who define the city in terms of movement and mobility (of which there are too many to count–maybe start with these two journals):