January 31, 2020

Streets of the Future, Is 2020 a Tipping Point?

Time

1:40pm - 3:00pm

Location

1605 Tilia, Room 1103, West Village

Speaker(s)

Janet Attarian, Senior Mobility Strategist I Principal, SmithGroup

Abstract

Transportation infrastructure and mobility in the United States is at a crucial crossroads.  Despite great strides in recent years our roads are less safe, the transportation sector is now the highest emitter of energy-related CO2 emissions, there is more congestion on our streets, cities and agencies are unable to keep up with maintenance, and transit is woefully underfunded and under threat.  Add to this rapid and unpredictable climate, societal, technological, and economic change and you have a crisis.  
As designers, developers, and communities work on real projects over the coming decade, will they continue to design and build much the same way they did 10, 20, 50, 100 years ago, or will they be able to create the flexible and innovative designs necessary to adapt to these changes and drive the outcomes needed to reverse these negative trends? What are some of the innovative ideas, big and small that will allow for forward looking data to drive decision making? How do we create shared values about what we want the future to be? And what will it take to make the 2020’s the decade we turned these metrics around?

Biographical Sketch

Janet has over 20 years of experience in creating beautiful, livable cities with a focus on neighborhood placemaking, transportation, and sustainable design. In her previous role as Deputy Director with the City of Detroit’s Planning and Development Department, she helped craft a planning vision for the City and oversaw the launch of a series of inclusionary neighborhood planning frameworks, forging partnerships and securing funding to ensure their implementation. Janet helped re-envision the city’s streets, driving specific place-based mobility improvement projects, including streetscapes, protected bike lanes, and plazas. Prior to working at the City of Detroit, Janet was the Complete Streets & Sustainability Director for the Chicago Department of Transportation, where she worked to turn Chicago’s streetscapes, riverwalks, and pocket parks into great urban places. Her ability to meld the concepts of complete streets and ecological design led to the development of the City’s Sustainable Streets Program and Green Alley Program. Acclaimed as a gifted innovator in design, management, and policy, Janet is an international speaker, and her work has been featured in publications including The New York Times and the FHWA’s Public Roads.