Category Archives: Quality of Life

Parking Day: Or how to civilise a traffic hell  

The Friedrich-Ebert-Strasse in the Neustadt district of Bremen is heavily congested, or better said: a four-lane traffic hell.  People who live on this road are exposed to unbearable levels of noise and air pollution every day. Because this road – 30 m wide, then 60 m wide before it turns into the Wilhelm-Kaisen-Bridge – offers generous space for motorized traffic. Pedestrians and cyclists, on the other hand, have to share the narrow (4 m) sidewalk, and can hardly ever cross the road safely.


Not much space for everyday cyclists, Foto: Wolfgang Köhler-Naumann

Should this be the case? Is this appropriate for a modern urban environment?

We believe it is not. We wanted to show that there is another way to organize public space. Continue reading Parking Day: Or how to civilise a traffic hell  

“Geht-Doch-Manifesto” – Pro pedestrian traffic in Bremen

Manifesto pro pedestrians:

(The following is taken from the original text)

Lots of dosh for car traffic – hardly anything for foot and bicycle

According to a study by the University of Kassel, car traffic in Bremen receives a subsidy of 156 euros per inhabitant per year, public transport 115 euros, cycling 9.3 euros and walking 16 euros.


Pavements in Bremen, does it have to be like that?

Although Bremen does somewhat better than other municipalities, it must be said that car traffic is heavily subsidised. Continue reading “Geht-Doch-Manifesto” – Pro pedestrian traffic in Bremen

Resident Parking – Transport Transition or Motorist Appeasement?

The new Draft Agreement on Cooperation in a Government Coalition for Bremen, 2019-2023 (from now on here called Koa Treaty) promises to install resident parking, to ban illegal parking and to push back the illegal practice of parking on pavements with two wheels. Hooray! Or not to Hooray?


Illegal Parking in Bremen – Foto: Beatrix Wupperman

It literally says: “We will consistently manage public parking space, i.e. we will manage the inner-city areas and identify resident parking.”

But we have to be careful: resident parking in Germany is super cheap. What is the upshot? Continue reading Resident Parking – Transport Transition or Motorist Appeasement?

“Platz Da!” Moves Up A Gear

The “Platz Da!” initiative has officially launched, as reported in the Weserkurier and on the telly.

“Platz Da! Bremen “is involving a growing number of Bremen citizens who are working together for a better cycling and walking infrastructure, and a comprehensive parking management system for the city. The campaign’s key demand is that the streets belong to all of us, not just the owners of parked cars, and is working with the Transport Transition Alliance , launched in January 2018 with a call for a city-wide management of car parking, and a genuine strategy for reducing space used by parked vehicles.

Continue reading “Platz Da!” Moves Up A Gear

Portland – the myth and the reality

Following a television documentary about the “do it yourself” and bicycle culture in Portland, Oregon, last year, many Bremers, and especially cyclists, asked me if Portland is really as cool as all the hype.

 Well-signed bike route through residential streets in the Mt Tabor neighbourhood of Portland, Oregon.

My answer was yes, and no. Continue reading Portland – the myth and the reality

Parking: Expensive for everyone except drivers

 Is Parking a Basic Right?

What does our community do when it offers free parking for almost everyone? Do free parking spaces constitute a needed public service such as education or health? Why am I allowed to buy a car without having to think about where I can park this car, day or night?


Parking on the cycle path in Bremen

Why am I paying rent or property tax for my house, but use free public space to park my private tin can?
Continue reading Parking: Expensive for everyone except drivers

Dangerous drivers from a parent’s perspective

Sunday night on the way home from the swimming pool my 8 year old daughter and I were almost run over by a car turning left into the crosswalk where we were (legally!) crossing the street.


Annes daughter watchful/An der Ecke Kornstraße/Kirchweg

Unfortunately we experience similar situations several times a week, since traffic enforcement in Bremen is dying out, and frustrated car drivers take their aggression out on the “weak.” This incident occurred at the intersection of Kirchweg and Kornstrasse in the Neustadt, just seconds away from our front door.

Continue reading Dangerous drivers from a parent’s perspective