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Government Providing Carpool Lots to Increase Carpooling...

Government Providing Carpool Lots to Increase Carpooling in Lille, France

Amongst all the studies and projects launched for the purpose of avoiding overcongestion on the roads, carpooling is one of the easiest solutions to put into place. In fact, 20 lots dedicated to carpooling are now provided in Lille Métropole, France. The activity zone in Neuville-en-Ferrain seems especially attuned to new trends in green transportation.

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Highway near Neuville-en-Ferrain, France

Amongst all the studies and projects launched for the purpose of avoiding overcongestion on the roads, carpooling is one of the easiest solutions to put into place. In fact, 20 lots dedicated to carpooling are now provided in Lille Métropole, France.

The activity zone in Neuville-en-Ferrain seems especially attuned to new trends in green transportation. The first to sign a contract that encourages economic development and improves the quality of life in activity zones, this park is also the first to welcome a carpool lot.

Inaugurated on July 9, 2015 by the President of the European Métropole of Lille (Métropole Européenne de Lille), Damien Castelain, the Mayor of Neuville-en-Ferrain, Marie Tonnerre, (also a County Councilor), and the Deputy Mayor Gérald Darmanin (also Vice President of the Lille Métropole in charge of transportation), this carpool lot is a small parking area that allows inhabitants to organize themselves into groups before departing for work and other travel.

“If there is only one figure to remember, it’s 1.1. There is, on average, 1.1 person in each car at peak hours. We are all alone in our cars,” notes Damien Castelain, mentioning statistical evidence. The President of Lille Métropole calls for “a change in behavior,” while precising that “intelligent and participatory mobility,” alone will not solve roadway congestion. “We are uninhibitedly studying all possibilities,” he repeats.

A carpool parking lot in France

Several reflections and projects are currently in process. The Contract of the State-Region plan (Contrat plan État-Région), co-signed by the Lille Métropole, should enable better accessibility throughout the Métropole thanks to the development of additional interchanges on the A1 and the A25. Many believe that this project ought to be expanded. Lille Métropole is currently also studying the feasibility of the development of a high level service bus on the emergency lane of the A23. There is also an ongoing discussion with the largest contributors to traffic (universities, major employers…) about their impact in terms of the flow of passengers and freight. Plans to use more technology for smarter mobility are also ongoing with Lille Métropole; currently involved in an Open DATA process which will have an impact on the issues of mobility and management of urban traffic.

While waiting for further mobility conferences, which should allow Lille Métropole to find more sustainable transportation solutions, the carpooling lots are an important first step.

Does your city provide appropriate accommodation for carpooling? In what other ways does your city encourage green transportation? Share your thoughts and your city's stories in the comments below.  

Original article, originally published in French here.

Credits: Data and images linked to sources.

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Carmen Phillips is a graduate of Oberlin College and is currently pursuing her masters in French Translation at Kent State University. Carmen spent the last year in Lyon, France teaching English to primary school children and had the opportunity to i...

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