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September 21 and 22
2 days, 2 disciplines, 2 ways to participate – defining our professional roles and uniting to build more equitable, accessible and inspired communities.
When thinking of the challenges of evolving community against the needs of changing demographics and aging populations, it is becoming more critical to consider how people of all ages, abilities, and incomes travel to work, school, recreation, hospitals, markets, and home. This includes their safety, sense of belonging, and connections to other people. Active transportation is viewed as favourable in the shift to more sustainable, inclusive cities, and many cities have declared climate emergencies, which highlights the imperative need to reduce transportation emissions. Communities everywhere are also asking for more sustainable modes of travel, with an increasing recognition of the health and well-being benefits of non-vehicular modes.
Unfortunately, our cities have traditionally been built to consider the transportation needs of a singular demographic: the working white male. Generally speaking, this demographic goes from point A to point B, compared to female caretakers, who tend to fit in multiple errands in a day. The needs of women, children, youth (especially girls and people of colour), seniors, and anyone other than the typical white male have been ignored. However, this is changing, as city dwellers call on planners to make streets suitable for vulnerable road users.
Since 2017, the Friendly Streets Hamilton project has been pushing for a “street revolution” in our urban neighbourhoods and working towards streets that are vibrant, safe, connected, and enjoyable. We know community engagement and input are critical to placemaking, especially from the most vulnerable road users in our communities. In this session, we present successful case studies from our work and encourage you to reflect on how to improve the health and well-being of vulnerable road users in your city.