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Car Free Me

Living Car Free Do you live car free or car light? Do you prefer to use alternative transportation (bicycles, walking, other human-powered or public transportation) for everyday activities whenever possible? Discuss your lifestyle here.

Car Free Me

Old 10-12-18, 02:16 AM
  #1  
Machka 
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Car Free Me

Have you heard about this program?

Home - Car Free Me

How does it work?

CarFreeMe is a 6-week, workshop style, small group program facilitated by a professional Car Free Me coach. Each weekly session will provide you with the building blocks to becoming car free, and they are tailored to meet your individual needs and goals. You won’t be alone on this journey; your Coach and your small group of peers, will provide you with guidance and support.



Why CarFreeMe works

CarFreeMe works because it is based on an effective, evidence-based, and client-centred approach to enabling people to continue doing what they love,car free. Since 2008, a multi-disciplinary team from The University of Queensland have been developing and evaluating the Car Free Me Program (formerly known as UQ Drive), in collaboration with the community.



I particularly like this ...

Stopping driving does not have to limit your life and freedom. Stay engaged in all your important activities out and about in the community.


I think that's a very important aspect of making changes such as adopting a car free lifestyle -- being able to continue to do all the things we love doing. Because, after all, why should we have to make sacrifices and become hermits?!? I know that during the years I was car free, I continued to do what I liked doing. Even now, 5 days a week I'm car free, but that doesn't hold me back.
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Old 10-12-18, 05:41 AM
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Originally Posted by Machka View Post
Because, after all, why should we have to make sacrifices and become hermits?!?
You say it like it's a bad thing. I never felt so good about life before I started making sacrifices for the greater good and limiting social contact to stop spreading myself so thin. It's good to be centered and re-charged so that when you do engage in selective social interactions, you are truly at your best.
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Old 10-12-18, 06:12 AM
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One of the other things I find interesting about that site is that they are doing research in, and practical work with, people who have had traumatic brain injuries and who are either temporarily or permanently unable to drive.

Their work aims "to keep people engaged in their communities and using alternative transport" which can be important aspects of recovery.


Driving after traumatic brain injury - CarFreeMe
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Old 10-13-18, 12:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Machka View Post
One of the other things I find interesting about that site is that they are doing research in, and practical work with, people who have had traumatic brain injuries and who are either temporarily or permanently unable to drive.

Their work aims "to keep people engaged in their communities and using alternative transport" which can be important aspects of recovery.


Driving after traumatic brain injury - CarFreeMe
Yes, I remember the earliest Google self-driving car testing was done for the benefit of blind people and there were no complaints about it then. It was only once it started looking like a mainstream transportation solution that all the negativity swarmed into the picture.
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Old 10-13-18, 01:34 PM
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Originally Posted by tandempower View Post
You say it like it's a bad thing. I never felt so good about life before I started making sacrifices for the greater good and limiting social contact to stop spreading myself so thin. It's good to be centered and re-charged so that when you do engage in selective social interactions, you are truly at your best.
I'm a natural introvert. No problem there. They need to shoot someone to Mars for five years solo, I'm the man for that job. My social life costs me $0.00 & 9/10. Same amount I pay for gasoline. I managed 4 business Facebook accounts but never had a personal account other than a facade to give me access to the business accounts. I feel sorry for people who need constant contact with friends and relatives. Best thing about my relatives - they are all dead. Friends, I have two and ignore both. My wife gets what attention I have to offer.
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Old 10-13-18, 02:14 PM
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Originally Posted by JoeyBike View Post
I'm a natural introvert. No problem there. They need to shoot someone to Mars for five years solo, I'm the man for that job. My social life costs me $0.00 & 9/10. Same amount I pay for gasoline. I managed 4 business Facebook accounts but never had a personal account other than a facade to give me access to the business accounts. I feel sorry for people who need constant contact with friends and relatives. Best thing about my relatives - they are all dead. Friends, I have two and ignore both. My wife gets what attention I have to offer.
I'm going to try to say this in a non-religious way so I don't provoke moderation: Humans interact with each other because we are living things and there is natural affinity to do so. Such natural affinity isn't limited to human-human interaction. Pets can be (much) better friends than humans. If having a pet doesn't work in your life for whatever reason, though, there are other ways to experience loving friendship/companionship. People made fun of pet rocks but watch Tom Hanks' performance opposite a volleyball in Castaway and tell me it doesn't move you emotionally. The emotionality of sociality and love is inherent within us and will manifest by/through whatever means available. The more you are at peace with your inner capacity for love, the more that will manifest in various social relationships and when it becomes too much for comfort, you just withdraw and recenter yourself. Sorry if this sounds new agey or religious or otherwise offends you but I think it is important to remember that we are social beings regardless of whether we are engaged in external/extrovert interactions or whether we are reclusive and introverted. The important thing is to accept inner peace and love that comes from within.
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Old 10-13-18, 02:45 PM
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Originally Posted by tandempower View Post
The important thing is to accept inner peace and love that comes from within.
Peace and quiet is what I'm all about. "There is no companion as companionable as solitude" - Henry David Thoreau.
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Old 10-13-18, 02:55 PM
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Originally Posted by JoeyBike View Post
Peace and quiet is what I'm all about. "There is no companion as companionable as solitude" - Henry David Thoreau.
Well, the point is there's always that sense of companionship. We're never truly alone.
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Old 10-13-18, 05:37 PM
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One doesn't have to give up anything to go car free; whatever level of social interaction makes you comfortable can continue without a car. For me the key is to "test drive", no pun intended. Before I retired, I spent a year living on my intended retirement income (plus only expenses for work that would disappear). That convinced me I could do it. I've spent this last year testing out car-free life.....figuring out how to do the things I do by bike or public transit (or, in the rare emergency, car share). I've successfully brought home my Costco loads by bike/trailer, I've run all my regular errands by bike, etc. The only tricky part is being unable to provide transport with a passenger; meeting folks on site will be the new norm. I've got an e bike motor kit coming next month that I can literally carry in my backpack and pull out and attach if I need it. I'm fortunate to not live where weather is a huge problem (NorCal) and if it rains, it usually only lasts a couple days and most things can get rescheduled. I've got a great biking poncho for when it can't. I've been inspired by the families I see pedaling bakfiets loaded with little kids, the folks with half a hardware store loaded on their cargo bikes, and the local handyman who actually takes a ladder and all his tools to jobs on his bike! They all seem to have very full lives =).
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Old 10-13-18, 08:02 PM
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Originally Posted by linberl View Post
One doesn't have to give up anything to go car free; whatever level of social interaction makes you comfortable can continue without a car. For me the key is to "test drive", no pun intended. Before I retired, I spent a year living on my intended retirement income (plus only expenses for work that would disappear). That convinced me I could do it. I've spent this last year testing out car-free life.....figuring out how to do the things I do by bike or public transit (or, in the rare emergency, car share). I've successfully brought home my Costco loads by bike/trailer, I've run all my regular errands by bike, etc. The only tricky part is being unable to provide transport with a passenger; meeting folks on site will be the new norm. I've got an e bike motor kit coming next month that I can literally carry in my backpack and pull out and attach if I need it. I'm fortunate to not live where weather is a huge problem (NorCal) and if it rains, it usually only lasts a couple days and most things can get rescheduled. I've got a great biking poncho for when it can't. I've been inspired by the families I see pedaling bakfiets loaded with little kids, the folks with half a hardware store loaded on their cargo bikes, and the local handyman who actually takes a ladder and all his tools to jobs on his bike! They all seem to have very full lives =).
Absolutely right!

And that's more or less how I went car free back in 1999. I had already been walking, cycling and using public transportation for most things ... it wasn't much of a leap to do it for everything.

I continued to work full time, attend university, go out to events and things, do my shopping, go to church, etc. etc. etc. It was just that a few things required a little bit of extra planning.

A program like the one described in the link helps people become aware of all the options that are available to them. It helps them ease into being car-free.
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Old 10-14-18, 06:36 AM
  #11  
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Originally Posted by tandempower View Post
Well, the point is there's always that sense of companionship. We're never truly alone.
No, I don't think this is the point of this thread at all.

​​​​​​​@Machka, your thread was immediately dragged off topic. I don't get the sense it was originally intended to discuss social interrelationships. If it was, so be it, but it's not LCF. If it wasn't then let's get back on the topic of the CarFreeMe program.
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Old 10-14-18, 06:42 AM
  #12  
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Originally Posted by BillyD View Post
Machka, your thread was immediately dragged off topic. I don't get the sense it was originally intended to discuss social interrelationships. If it was, so be it, but it's not LCF. If it wasn't then let's get back on the topic of the CarFreeMe program.

Yes, my thread was immediately dragged off topic.

No, it wasn't intended to be a discussion of social interrelationships.



It was meant to be a discussion about programs like CarFreeMe, or plans of various sorts, that assist people to become car free and yet still allow them to live the lives they want to live.

I like the goals of a program like CarFreeMe.
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Old 10-14-18, 06:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Machka View Post

It was meant to be a discussion about programs like CarFreeMe, or plans of various sorts, that assist people to become car free and yet still allow them to live the lives they want to live.

I like the goals of a program like CarFreeMe.
tbh that UQ website spruiks it more like a transitional service for retirees at their end of their driving careers, not quite voluntary lifestyle choice

(which I heartily support, in view of public road safety )
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Old 10-14-18, 07:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Tamiya View Post


tbh that UQ website spruiks it more like a transitional service for retirees at their end of their driving careers, not quite voluntary lifestyle choice

(which I heartily support, in view of public road safety )

That can be a voluntary thing ... people do decide that driving might not be in their best interest at various times of life.

And people of all ages could potentially make use of such a program. Right now the focus of that program might be in a limited number of areas, but the potential is there for expansion into other age groups and society groups.
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Old 10-14-18, 09:56 AM
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Originally Posted by BillyD View Post
No, I don't think this is the point of this thread at all.

@Machka, your thread was immediately dragged off topic. I don't get the sense it was originally intended to discuss social interrelationships. If it was, so be it, but it's not LCF. If it wasn't then let's get back on the topic of the CarFreeMe program.
Please excuse me if it seems like I was trying to take the thread in a religious direction. My only point was stated in my original post-response to Machka . . .

Last edited by BillyD; 10-14-18 at 10:05 AM.
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Old 10-14-18, 10:07 AM
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Originally Posted by tandempower View Post
Please excuse me if it seems like I was trying to take the thread in a religious direction. My only point was stated in my original post-response to Machka . . .
Your "only point" is off topic. We are NOT discussing it.
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Old 10-14-18, 10:50 AM
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I drive a car and probably will as long as I own a house. I have improved the 26 yo house I bought 20 years ago radically (insulation, heating bills, comfort. interior layout, walls, new roof, etc. Many, many sheets of plywood, paneling and drywall. Usually one, two or three sheets at a time. I will not take 4' x 8' sheets on a bike. Just not that hardcore. (I did carry a 2' x 4' sheet of 1/4" aluminum on my UO-8 40 years ago. That was an adventure!

I did not own a car until I was 31 and rarely drove. All shopping was done by bike. All commuting was done by bike. Much of my life until I was 26 was around Boston so I used the MBTA whenever it worked. After that, in my next 5 cities I rarely used mass transit, not because I was opposed to it. I just found it easier to ride than schedule my life around the transit. (The MBTA, with its long hours of operation, huge coverage of the Boston area and frequent trolleys/subway trains worked well for me.)

I am now retired but go into Portland ~4,5 times/week, nearly half of which is by bike. (~20 mile round trip.) I chose my home based in large part because it is a sweet 9-10 miles in-town, faster over the West Hills and 8 miles from good county riding. I am on the west side of Portland, not the bike-hip east side. I've thought about getting a trailer that could carry a guitar amp, but that probably won't happen until I go car free (after I finish all this repair/update stuff that probably will not be completed in this lifetime). Maybe I'll live on the eastside, car free when I can no longer live at this house. Cool if I can still ride!

If I bought a new house, I could see car-free. Renting the Home Depot truck for those occasional big purchases would be completely justified. Perhaps a trailer (one or two wheel depending on road width/comfort/safety). Actually, feeding myself with a bike with 4 small panniers is easy. Best farmers market is 8 miles away and I get nearly all my produce year 'round from it by bike.

Ben
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Old 10-14-18, 04:36 PM
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That program looks great. Working with the elderly I encounter the topic of when they had to give up their license, often with an accompanying loss of independence. It's a milestone with repercussions similar to retirement (loss of purpose).

I also think programs that teach able bodied people how to live car free/lite would be helpful. Many times I get reflexive statements like "oh that's a great idea but it wouldn't work for me" when discussing cycling even though I know the people and can see how it would work.

To me it all seems overtly simplistic but that's because in this area I am fairly independent in thought. Others really do need help "normalizing" an activity before trying it.

In a large corp setting I could see a Health and Wellness committee hosting a workshop for employees and adding incentives like secure parking/showers. If say, 6 people went through as a cohort they could provide long term peer support to each other.

personally, I would get behind making something like that happen in my workplace.

Last edited by Happy Feet; 10-14-18 at 04:40 PM.
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Old 10-15-18, 03:35 AM
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This is a program that Western Kentucky University puts on ...


Car Free Program
https://www.wku.edu/transportation/c...reeprogram.php
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Old 10-15-18, 06:11 PM
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I just watched a BBC documentary that spoke about the staff at Chris King headsets getting incentives for cycling to work. Each day they ride they get credit to spend in the facility cafeteria and once a year they hold a contest and if you ride 100% of the time you get a couple of extra days off with pay!

I'd settle for a free coffee at our bistro
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Old 10-15-18, 10:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Happy Feet View Post
I just watched a BBC documentary that spoke about the staff at Chris King headsets getting incentives for cycling to work. Each day they ride they get credit to spend in the facility cafeteria and once a year they hold a contest and if you ride 100% of the time you get a couple of extra days off with pay!
Is there any requirement for the bicycle commuters to live car free to be eligible for the incentives?
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Old 10-15-18, 11:40 PM
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No I don't think so.
The doc is called Ride of My Life. It's on ytube.
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Old 10-19-18, 06:14 PM
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Group shrink sessions to go without a car? What is that all about? It can only happen on the interwebs. Our society is doomed.
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Old 10-19-18, 07:20 PM
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Originally Posted by TiHabanero View Post
Group shrink sessions to go without a car? What is that all about? It can only happen on the interwebs. Our society is doomed.
I'm pretty sure the site doesn't say anything about a psychiatrist ... did you find that somewhere in there?
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Old 10-19-18, 07:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Machka View Post
This is a program that Western Kentucky University puts on ...


Car Free Program
https://www.wku.edu/transportation/c...reeprogram.php
That's really cool! I really could have benefited from a program like that as a college freshman, especially the bike tune up and discount Greyhound tickets.

My university had a different strategy - they simply would not sell parking passes to freshmen living on campus. So, the only freshmen with cars were a few from wealthy families who could afford the astronomical fees for off-campus monthly parking.

Doing two semesters without a car was definitely helpful when I wanted/needed to reduce my dependence on a vehicle as an adult. I learned valuable skills like how to walk places safely, use public transit, and ride a bicycle in the rain and snow.
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