The author of the new book "Seeing the Better City" (Island Press) explains the importance of practiced skills of observation, and how a "vocabulary of looking" can be a foundation for participation in civic discussion.
It was clear to the City of Toronto that engaging less confident cyclists that make up 60% of the population, yet seldom come to community meetings, might be the key to dramatic mode shifts in the city. Here's how it happened.
Ian Sacs, P.E. is a worldwide transportation solutions consultant based in Finland.
Ian Sacs has been playing in traffic for over ten years. He solves challenging urban transportation and parking problems by making the best possible use of precious public spaces and designing custom-fit programs to distribute modal demand. As Director of Transportation and Parking for the City of Hoboken, Ian introduced many innovative transportation and parking solutions, such as "Corner Cars", a municipal car-sharing amenity that resulted in over 750 residents shedding their unneeded cars in less than two years, "Hoboken Daylighting", intersection safety measures that reduced pedestrian and bicycle collisions with automobiles by 30% and 60%, respectively, as well as shared parking strategies that maximized utilization in one of America's most over-parked cities. Ian is currently a worldwide transportation solutions consultant based in Finland, where he endeavors to "do as the Finns do" and commute by bicycle throughout the year. He is a licensed Professional Engineer (PE), holds a Master of Science degree in Civil Engineering from The University of Tennessee, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil and Environmental Engineering from Florida International University.
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If certain elements of masterplanning are not carefully chosen—and their impacts not carefully explained to final decision makers—then there runs great risk that the cities we design from scratch perform worse than the cities we already have.
Small business owners who drive themselves nuts arguing against the reuse of on-street parking with other balanced transportation solutions is a shame because there is so much good data to prove it's actually very good for business.
The epic, years-long battle for converting one Holland Tunnel tube to a bicycle/pedestrian-only facility may find compromise in this proposed free ticket voucher program for bicycle-toting ferry passengers.
The evolution of today's infrastructure-intensive bike sharing systems has been a hard-fought learning process; alas, the current paradigm is about to get turned on its head, and it's happening – surprise - this week in Hoboken, New Jersey.