The Streets Are Alive

How re-thinking urban mobility is injecting new vibrancy into our cities’ street spaces and sparking innovation in the way we travel.

Toward the end of the 19th century, city streets around the world became the subject of intense debate. As they swelled with horses, carriages, hawkers and bicycles, questions were asked for the first time about the objects and activities that were appropriate there, how people should travel, and how street spaces should be arranged.

As the 20th century marched on, and the car rose to prominence, these questions were gradually answered in line with one key goal – the facilitation of efficient journeys. Today, however, efficiency of travel is just one factor of many.

Urban mobility and the public space of the street are now being re-thought in terms of health, safety, urban liveability, economic viability, resource scarcity, congestion, cultural activities and environmental concerns.

In this fascinating presentation we’ll contrast these vastly different historical contexts, discuss the exciting possibilities opening up in Adelaide and cities around the world, such as the “pop-up” phenomenon, and consider emerging innovations in how and why we travel.

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