Saturday, 4 August 2018

300th Blog Post: So Where Next?

Rather astonishingly, this is my 300th post to this blog which I started in November 2012 and what a journey I have been on (goodness knows how many words I have written).

In my very first post, I asked the question "what do we really want" in response to the various articles in the CIHT's Transpro magazine for the month. I also made the following comment;

What this single month's magazine shows me is that the UK really doesn't seem to want to get a grip on running its highways properly and doesn't do long-term planning.

It's now the middle of 2018 and I am not sure that as a country, we have changed (well apart from the continuing fallout from *that* referendum). We still want to predict and provide for motorways under the guise of being nationally significant projects, whereas local active travel is stupendously patchy and often reliant on budgets which wouldn't even buy a modest motorway junction - Highways England is currently running at a £2.9bn overspend, a sum which could transform dozens of towns and cities.

We have expensive and often unreliable railways, a big push to move car fuelling from the petrol station to our streets with EV charging and endless studies and reviews whenever we're dealing with local transport and especially active travel.

My most popular post is from 2013 and it was heartening to see that it was Kerb Your Enthusiasm, which has remained my top post for a long time. It's great that people are interested in perhaps the most ordinary element in our streets toolkit because in fact, they are extremely powerful in how they shape space, safety and accessibility. The post actually inspired me to write an entire design guide as part of developing my fledgling micro-consultancy, City Infinity. By the way, The Joy of Kerbs is available for free.


This blog has hit over half-a-million views and I like to think this is more about people being interested in how our highways are designed and managed, rather than my writing skills. Certainly I have been humbled when people have told me they have used my posts as either campaigning tools or as reference materials when they have been undertaking design work. I have even seen my photos appear in consultants' documents when they are trying to get a point or cross. I don't always get the credit, but I am glad the message is spreading.

So, where next? I don't know if blogging is going out of fashion because I am seeing fewer posts from other people I have followed for a long time, but I continue to find writing enjoyable and so I'll carry on for now. I set myself a crazy target of a post a week and while I have ideas, it'll continue. If there is a subject you think I should cover or if there is a problem you want looked at, then please let me know.

It just remains for me to say thank you for reading and let's continue with these adventures in time and space in the strange universe of highways and transport!

3 comments:

  1. Thankyou RH, please keep going. Your insights are very valuable to tthos of us around the world advocating for safer streets for riders.

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  2. Thank you for all you write. I look forward to your wise words every week. Roll on the 600th!
    Best wishes,
    Adam

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  3. Congrats! And please do continue as your perspective is very valuable. I found your posts very accessible for people like me who are interested in these things but don't necessary have the technical knowledge. Thank you.

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