It is extremely impressive how Vancouver has advocated to become a livable City through many factions - citizen, non-profit and municipal, while taking a 360 degree approach to tackle challenges. While attending the Pro Bike Pro Walk Pro Place conference this past September, I had the opportunity to personally see the fruit of this arduous labor by riding an Amtrak bus through the suburbs, walking the City core, biking along the Seawall, riding the mass transit, and taking my very first sea bus. It was a hilly terrain, crowded with many modes hustling and bustling in a rapidly growing city, but due to increased enforcement, it was an awesomely pleasant experience as a tourist.
Checkout this great video and you'll see exactly why Vancouver was the perfect place for the conference!
Mobi, Vancouver's new bike share system, was a breeze and I noticed both residents and visitors alike using it all five days. Signage was robust and highly informational. I must agree there weren't a lot of "sticky" places to commune or just enjoy some local art/music - I wanted to feel the local flair! Their plans to ramp up "pop-up" places should help connecting Vancouver culture with its public streets.
It was a great conference overall, with a lot of useful learnings to improve our work. My Top 3 takeaways would have to be:
Prioritize programming on the FUTURE of our work 1. End of Trip 2. Displacement 3. Perceived safety
We must understand there is nothing rational within the U.S.'s general view regarding PLACE
Evaluate, evaluate, evaluate. Let's not be complacent around the importance of data and how it's used in our work any longer.