Velo-City 2012 took over the beautiful streets of Vancouver recently bringing 750 delegates from 40 countries to talk about the role cycling will play in the planning of our cities.
The Deadly Nightshade’s Meg Orlinski attended some of the plenary seminars and kindly offered to be our intrepid Treadlie reporter.
Her wrap up of the conference consists of quotes from the sessions she attended, they'll inspire and motivate or provide the basis for further research!
Meg's first report is from the Opening Ceremony, Keynote on Leadership, Diversity and Empowerment
“To make a city more inclusive, it's about infrastructure and culture. Changing culture is more of a challenge.”
“Public bike systems are a visible part of changing bike culture.”
Paul Dragon- Velo-City 2012 Conference Chair, owner of Reckless Bikes
“We need to challenge all level of governments. Our federal government thinks the only energy comes from fossil fuels. We got the best energy source right here.” (Shows strong legs and arms to cheers from the crowd.)
Nancy Olewiller, Board Chair of Translink
“We come from the Montreal parking authority, who would of thought that a company that parks cars would come up with a public bike system?
“We need to come up with imaginative ideas on how we move people in our cities.”
“[Biking] it's not a joke, it's not frivolity…It's the only mode of mobility for 70% of the population in developing countries.”
“It has to be great for the 8 year olds and the 80 year olds. We need to stop making cities only for people who are 30 and athletic!"
“Building more roads to improve congestion, it's like trying to put out a fire with gasoline.”
“Why is it that we know so much about what makes animals happy and so little about what makes people happy? If not, we'd be making cities differently.”
“It's not about money- it's about having the political guts and will to do it. It's about being BOLD. Bloomberg and Sadik-Khan have opened our eyes to the possibilities of cities in North America.”
“Doing infrastructure right: It has to be a grid, it has to be interconnected, it has to be safe. Don’t even bother with sharrows! Focus on lowering the speed, and connecting bike-ways.”
“To be a leader, and to practice what I preach, for the past two years I have commuted by bicycle. First declared "for show" by media, after 6 months turned into a sport! Media now calls me Bicycle Master.”
We have a few principals: 1) Bicycles are fun! We are not here to preach. 2) Bicycles are for anyone. 3) Infrastructure is key! 4) Take opportunities!
Dr. Hanz Micheal Kloth- Secretary General of the International Transport Forum