Lockdown and future of motorways...
Lockdown gave Greater Paris residents a new experience. During several weeks, our streets were deserted - empty and calm, pollution free, pedestrian-friendly... which residents appreciated. Most certainly on the political agenda will be the reconfiguration of the motorways within A86, our second ring road, including the ”Périphérique”, which we studied last year for the Metropolitan Forum. The Arsenal Pavilion exhibition clearly demonstrated that intense traffic on these roads emits a level of fine particles detrimental to the health of residents. Consequently, it is now urgent to reduce the number of vehicles using them by the collective transfer of passengers from their private cars to shuttle buses. The space thus freed can and should be used to provide the metropolis with environmental attributes : densely planted, these spaces will soak up rainwater, increase biodiversity and actively contribute to cooling in hot weather.
The coronavirus public health issues triggered a strong political reaction. Within days, a bold decision was taken to shut down the economy.
The revised traffic regulations on urban highways would also be an innovative measure, essential for the wellbeing of metropolitan residents. During post-lockdown, it might become an expectation of local residents and politically possible decision for local councillors… The recent municipal elections results head nationwide in this direction which will become one of the major challenges during the next municipal term of office!