Car-free urban areas: A radical solution to the last mile problem or a step too far?

Miles Tight, Fiona Rajé, Paul Timms

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)
224 Downloads (Pure)


This paper suggests an alternative and, arguably, more comprehensive defi nition of the last mile as a personal travel concept. This characterization of the last mile is used as a catalyst for discussion of a radical urban car-free vision to explore how such urban areas might operate in practice. A range of international examples of places where substantial change in urban transport has occurred are included to illustrate the potential for change, how this has been brought about and how close diff erent areas are to achieving very diff erent urban transport futures. The overwhelming argument is that such urban areas can work and in the context of the last mile concept provide a neat solution to many of the associated issues and problems. It is shown that a number of urban areas appear to be moving towards such car-free futures and others might be expected to follow once the benefi ts become clearer.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)603-616
Number of pages14
JournalBuilt Environment
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Urban Studies


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