I spent a considerable amount of time in my 20′s reading books about urban planning and transportation, but soon every book started referencing each other (or at least just Jane Jacobs) and there wasn’t a whole lot new under the sun. Straphangers, a new best seller by Taras Grescoe, seems to move away from that trend by addressing all the normal urbanist topics, but doing so in a modern context with interviews of current progressives and everyday transit users.
Already a best seller in Canada, Straphangers take the reader around the world to look at non-car transportation alternatives from bullet trains to cargo bikes to futuristic ways of getting from point A to point B.
From the website : On a journey that takes him to New York, Moscow, Paris, Copenhagen, Tokyo, BogotÃ¡, Phoenix, Portland, Vancouver, and Philadelphia, Grescoe gets the inside story on the world’s great transit systems, going beneath the streets to see subway tunnels being dug, boarding state-of-the-art streetcars, and hopping on high-speed trains, along the way uncovering new ideas that will help undo the damage a century of car-centric planning has done to our cities. Ultimately he envisions a future with convenient, affordable, and sustainable urban transportation-and better city living-for all.
Count me in.