Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Vision and virtuosity in the Big Apple: Managing the transformative moment

Dear Mrs. Mayor,

If you are considering a public bicycle project for your city, may we respectfully urge you to take a page out of New York City's book on transportation innovation in the context of a previously car-based city.  So before your project  starts exposing hundreds, thousands of innocent people to the daily dangers of untamed traffic, think first to plan and build those key hundreds of kilometers of protected city cycling provision for the men, women and children of all ages who will be taking to your streets.  After all, that's your job.

The editor, World Streets

This six-minute video produced by an EMBARQ team in cooperation with the Department of Transportation of the City of New York is certainly worth viewing and mulling it over in the context of your city. The bottom-line message that it delivers is not only about the politics of transportation and the critical importance of having strong leadership from the top, but also it underlines the point that the only way that these great new mobility and beautiful cities ideas can be turned into reality is through high technical competence.   You'll see.

The program notes on this open as follows: "New York’s Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Department of Transportation are on a mission to make the Big Apple the “greatest, greenest big city in the world” by ramping up bicycle infrastructure across the city, introducing bus rapid transit to the Bronx, and pedestrianizing Times Square, among other bold transportation initiatives."

Toward the end of the film the excellent Janette Sadak-Kahn, Commissioner of the New York City Department of Transportation,  reminds us that: "You can use your city's streets to improve the quality of life, the economics, and the environmental health of your city. I think that is the transformative moment. "  (Which is exactly why World Streets wishes you to spend those few minutes with this film.)

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