Much has been written about the multi-modal successes of Dutch cities and towns, where walking, cycling, and public transit—often in combination with each other—have been the dominant modes of transport for nearly fifty years.
Now, in the face of a global pandemic, cities of all sizes around the world are realizing that to become more safe, inclusive, and resilient places, private automobiles must play more of a background role.
But what concrete lessons can mid-sized Canadian cities such as Windsor learn from the Netherlands, who—after a similar crisis in the early 1970s—decided to take their previously car-based environment—and mobility network—in a very different direction? How might reducing car-dependence increase transportation equity for everyone? And how can we make these changes quickly and effectively?
Melissa Bruntlett and Chris Bruntlett of Modacity will convene two virtual events hosted by the Centre for Cities in collaboration with the Windsor Essex County Environment Committee with the support of the Dutch Cycling Embassy. The first is a public lecture and discussion on 26 April, and the second is a workshop for City of Windsor and County of Essex employees on 17 May. See registration link for full details.
Melissa and Chris Bruntlett are Canadian authors and urban mobility advocates who strive to communicate the benefits of sustainable transport and inspire happier, healthier, human-scale cities. Now based in Delft, the Netherlands, Melissa works with bicontinental consultancy Mobycon in supporting the promotion of Dutch knowledge, policy, and principles across Europe and North America. As communications manager for the Dutch Cycling Embassy, Chris uses his knowledge and passion to share lessons for global cities wishing to learn from that country’s extraordinary success.
They are co-authors of two books: “Building the Cycling City: The Dutch Blueprint for Urban Vitality”—which outlines how to create a great cycling city—and “Curbing Traffic: The Human Case for Fewer Cars in our Lives”—which explains why it is so important. They have worked in cities of all sizes across Canada and around the world, including Guelph, Hamilton, Sarnia, and Waterloo.