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Quotes from Velo-City, Part Four

From June 26 to 29, Vancouver B.C. hosted Velo-City, the world’s premier international cycling planning conference. The event offered delegates from around the world a chance to share best practices for creating and sustaining cycling-friendly cities, where bicycles are valued as part of daily transport and recreation.

This post is the first of 4 written by Meg Orlinski of the Deadly Nightshades, who captured “Notable Quotables” while there, and is sharing them with BikingToronto readers as well as Treadlie, the Australian cycling magazine.

Other Parts: Part 1 - Part 2 - Part 3

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Part 4- Increasing Cycling and Safety, Empowering the Future: Children and Cycling & Closing Ceremony

Photo courtesy of the ECF.

Niels Torslov- Chair of OECD, Director of the Traffic Department for the City of Copenhagen

Key messages available at http://www.internationaltransportforum.org

“Access to evidence-based facts across nations is difficult.”

“Health benefit [of cycling] is 5-7 times greater then the negative health impacts.”

“Local solutions for local places.”

“Speed management acts as ‘hidden infrastructure’ protecting cyclists and should be included as an integral part of cycle safety measures.”

“Cyclists should not be the only target of cycling safety politics- motorists are just as important to target.”

Joop Goos- President La Prévention Routière Internationale

“Every 3 minutes a child dies in traffic.”

“Road safety is all about emotion, it’s about people who have been trapped in traffic their whole lives, who have lost a love one in traffic… road quality has a huge impact on life.”

“Is there a Europe-wide road safety perspective for cycling? NO.”

“The vehicle safety thing is very important- at the end of the day, you don’t have a small accident with a truck.”

“If you don’t deal with it, you don’t get cycling or walking.”

“There are symposiums of safety, there are symposium of sustainable transport, and all to often the come to government as different issues. We know at the EU it works best when they come together.”

“No one likes policy makers.”

“More cyclists= safer cycling. Double ridership and half accidents in London and Copenhagen. We don’t understand why- but we know it works.”

“They hate us because we are smug, and we are smiling looking healthy.”

Randy Neufeld – Executive Director and Chief Strategy Officer for the Active Transportation Alliance, 2012 Denmark Cycling Embassy Award recipient

“Around the world cycling advocates have the same problem. The exchange that happens here at the Velo-City conference, at the European Cyclist federation… it’s invaluable.”

Manfred Neun- President of the European Cyclist Federation

“Cycling for children supports cycling democracy. It helps set up a more peaceful world for our children.”

“How can our children discover the world when they are over-protected?”

“[Car transport.] It means delivering a children in a container…. he is not able to discover his outside world.”

“Politicians are humans too!”

“The UN rights of the children- all of them can be improved by cycling.”

“Charter of Vancouver- it is for all, it’s for everyone in the world.”

“More children cycling more often will change this world.” 

“We vote for cycling! We vote for children! We vote for the future!”

Dr. Paul Tranter- Associate Professor in Geography, University of New South Wales

“We are going to need a massive cultural change to create a better city environment for children.”

“If we get it right for the children, we’ll get it right for cycling.”

“Article 31 of the UN Convention- the right to play for children- critically important for the psychological, emotional and intellectual development.”

“We have to start thinking of children as present citizens- not future citizens.”

“If we can create child friendly cities, we can almost solve all the problems of the universe.”

“They save time by not having to work so much to buy that second car, they save time by not having to drive their children everywhere… Walking and cycling save time.”

“Social Values are more important then the built environment.”

Children are not born obsessed with speed and productivity- we make them that way.-Carl Honore

“We need a collective agreement to look after everyone’s children.”

“Creating cycle friendly cities. It’s child’s play.”

Steen Møller- Mayor of Culture and Urban Development for the City of Odense

Odensa is home of Hans Christian Anderson- writer famous for fables about transformation.

1898 in Odensa the first bike path created in Denmark was made for the rich to avoid horse droppings.

We have said to developers- if you want to have 100k spots for car parking- equally as many for bike parking! They did better and have doubled that.

Cycle habits at an early age, is quite crucial if you want to be biking your entire life.

We have learned that competitions work very well. It’s important that we aim for new goals, that we are not just satisfied with the goals we have achieved a few years ago.

Maria Vassilakou- Deputy Mayor of Vienna, host city of Velo-City 2013

“The heart of our cities is our street level… it’s the place where people can meet and interact.”

“Quality of life has everything to do with the pace of the city.”

“It means hard work…and not only that but risk for politicians.”

“We will see you in Vienna next year, and let us all produce together the sound of cycling.”

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Quotes from Velo-City, Part Three

From June 26 to 29, Vancouver B.C. hosted Velo-City, the world’s premier international cycling planning conference. The event offered delegates from around the world a chance to share best practices for creating and sustaining cycling-friendly cities, where bicycles are valued as part of daily transport and recreation.

This post is the first of 4 written by Meg Orlinski of the Deadly Nightshades, who captured “Notable Quotables” while there, and is sharing them with BikingToronto readers as well as Treadlie, the Australian cycling magazine.

Other Parts: Part 1 - Part 2

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Part 3- Leadership in Healthy and Livability Communities

Photo courtesy of the ECF.

Dr. Lawrence D Frank- Chair in Sustainable Urban Transportation Systems, UBC

“How can the design of a city NOT effect our health?”

“Both your neighbourhood and your preferences shape your behaviour – relationship is at least likely possibly causal.”

“On 350 calories (one apple tart) a cyclists can travel 10 miles, a pedestrian 3.5, and an automobile 100 feet.”

“I’ve had this debate with my parents, many of us have… you can’t tell them what to do.”

“Pedestrians and cyclists- we are very sensitive to our environment- we aren’t incased in steel machines.”

“Playability (vs usability) is coming into Vogue.”

“Every additional kilometer walked translates into 4.8 percent reduction in the likelihood of being obese. Distances walked increases with walkability.”

Dr Jason Chang- professor of Civil Engineering Department and director of Advanced Public
Transport Research Center in National Taiwan University

“Full trip cost and social sustainability, car and motorcycle users are heavily subsidized by social resources.”

“When I was a student, I didn’t know anything about sustainability. Now I teach my students.”

“I believe that we can join together and bring experts to the parts of the country that needs help.”

Gordon Price- Director of the City Program, SFU

“You do need people placed at the right time at the decision making process.”

“Here is my thesis: none of my facts are going to make a difference, but they are critical. This is not about facts or evidence. This is something much deeper. Call it the culture wars…”

“Facts as we all know, have a Liberal bias.”

“I don’t think that cycling would have come around if it wasn’t for the “crazy” and slightly “obnoxious” activists in the 70′s that we persistent. They are no longer here- they burnt themselves out. Like an important flare, they shot up illuminating, but they are gone.”

“One of the people you think you who couldn’t do anything can do the most. [Nixon in China.] “

“Take rhetoric and turn it into a budget line.”

“Where are the obnoxious, where are the persistent and strategic? We need them.”

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Quotes from Velo-City, Part Two

From June 26 to 29, Vancouver B.C. hosted Velo-City, the world’s premier international cycling planning conference. The event offered delegates from around the world a chance to share best practices for creating and sustaining cycling-friendly cities, where bicycles are valued as part of daily transport and recreation.

This post is the first of 4 written by Meg Orlinski of the Deadly Nightshades, who captured “Notable Quotables” while there, and is sharing them with BikingToronto readers as well as Treadlie, the Australian cycling magazine.

Other Parts: Part 1 -

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Part 2- Combined Mobility: Seamlessly Integrating Cycling and Transit

Photo courtesy of the ECF.

Jon Weston- Conservative MP of West Vancouver, Sunshine Coast and Sea to Sky

“We [Harper Conservative Government] share the message that cycling is an economic driver.”

“There is a kinship among cyclists that transitions the things that divide us.”

“Bike parking… that kind of practical progress is the kind of thing we are committed to.”

“My dream is that one day everyone at Parliament comes to work thinking that

promoting health is a part of their job.”

Michael Roschlau- President and CEO of the Canadian Urban Transit Association

“The links and synergies between cycling and transit is critical.”

“Transit doesn’t happen in isolation.”

“In 2040 mobility, or lack there of, will be an integral issue to our economics.”

CUTA Transit Vision 2040

 

Aske Wieth-Knudsen- Head of Strategy, DSB S-Train

“If you are more then one kilometer away from a [transit] station- it seems the car takes over.”

“We made a decision to be a bikes best friend- we sent a clear vision… people with bikes are very welcome on our trains.“

It should be easy to use your bike with the trains!
– Bike pump at stations
– Bike ramp at stairs
– Free bike servicing once a year for frequent customers
– Discounts on getting repairs
– Promote bike super highways with Copenhagen municipality
– Citybike project with Copenhagen municipality

We were told you must be insane in the management to remove the bike price tickets- lose the income. But it seemed to be a big success, huge annual growth of 5.8%

Michel Labrecque- Chair of Société de transport de Montréal

I wish I could change the weather… I know you [Vancouverites] say there is no bad weather- just bad clothing.

“Cocktail transport. The concept was from a Montreal cyclist point of view- it was to create an alliance between cyclists and public transit- not only buses- but taxi cabs, and car rentals. We need to work together.”

Timothy Papandreau- Deputy Director of Transportation Planning for the Sustainable Streets
Division of San Francisco’s Municipal Transit Agency

“It takes a lot of courage by staff, and politicians and citizens to make this work.“

“As a transit user- you don’t care who provides the service, you just want to get to work.”

“You don’t have to be in charge of the system- you have to be in charge of the funds.”

“People care less about CO2 then they care about having fun.”

“Follow the money- where every the money goes is what happens.”

Marisa Espinosa- Senior Manager of Service Planning, Translink BC

“We need to understand Vancouver’s cycling gender gap.”

“Barriers to women cycling in Vancouver, study finds women feel unsafer on road then men, and are more likely to travel with children.”

“Although evidence suggests the health benefits of cycling far outweigh the risks- we need to address the perception of safety.”

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Quotes from Velo-City, Part One

From June 26 to 29, Vancouver B.C. hosted Velo-City, the world’s premier international cycling planning conference. The event offered delegates from around the world a chance to share best practices for creating and sustaining cycling-friendly cities, where bicycles are valued as part of daily transport and recreation.

This post is the first of 4 written by Meg Orlinski of the Deadly Nightshades, who captured “Notable Quotables” while there, and is sharing them with BikingToronto readers as well as Treadlie, the Australian cycling magazine.

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Last week Velo-City 2012 took over the beautiful streets of Vancouver, and the future streets of the world. This intern ational cycling conference successfully brought over 750 delegates from 40 various countries to talk about the role cycling will play in the planning of our cities as our world population grows exponentially. The positive effects of cycling in a healthy future are well know; benefits to health, reduced traffic congestion, economic savings, livable streets, better living… but how do we get there? These experts came together to present research, gain feedback, run workshop and ‘charge their batteries’ with a diverse collection of colleagues.

The Deadly Nightshades’ Meg Orlinski attended some of the plenary seminars and was fortunate to listen to some of the best bike minds in the world share their experience, knowledge and passion on getting the world to bike.

Here is series of quotes based on plenary sessions to inspire and motivate. They can be used as a starting point for research, and can help you to create more bike-friendly streets in your own neighbourhood. Follow the links to learn more about the speakers, their work, and the cities they make more livable for us to ride in.

 

Photo courtesy of the ECF. From the right: Paul Dragon, Richard Campbell, Gregory Robertson, Manfred Neun.

 

Part 1- Opening Ceremony, Keynote on Leadership, and Diversity and Empowerment.

Paul Dragon- Velo-City 2012 Conference Chair, owner of Reckless Bikes

“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.”

Manfred Neun- President of the European Cyclist Federation

“Cycling is a tool and a symbol of sustainable behaviour.”

“Transportation is not sexy- no one goes into politics to be a transportation minister.”

“We need not produce on going long list of the benefit of cycling- we need concepts! [Like 8-80 Cities.]”

Nancy Olewiller, Board Chair of Translink

“We have a real problem with bike theft- as most of your cities do… To make it safe, to make people feel safe about their bike, that is a real challenge.”

“Do we have far to go? Yes we do. But we have to keep celebrating our progress.”

“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.)

Alain Ayotte, President of Public Bike System Company

“It’s a snowball effect- the more people use bikes, the more people want to use it.”

“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.”

Gil Penalosa, Executive Director of 8-80 Cities

“Today I want to talk to you about democracy, sustainability and human rights.”

“[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.”

“This week at Velo-City we have to recharge our batteries- next week we have to go back and ride our talk!”

Dr. Gabriel Lagos – Director of Sustainability, Casas GEO

“We did many studies in Mexico- what do people like in a house? One, trying to improve your quality of life, and two, added value.”

“Most of our customers will never be able to travel more then 200 km from their home.”

“So we will stop selling houses- we will start selling communities.”

“Improving public space and non-motorized mobility will improve the quality of life and therefore improve your houses.”

“You know more about yourself then anybody. The only person you can change is
yourself.”

Wan-Su Park, Mayor of Changwong, Korea. Host of the 2011 Eco-Mobility Conference.

“I endeavored to make Changwong a sustainable city in two ways: pro enterprise campaign, and green capital projects.”

“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.”

How?
• Find and improve irrational laws and regulations.
• Cyclist first traffic policy set forth.
• Start various cycling education.
• Bicycle related groups and NGO’s are supported.
• Start cycling events.
• Public participation events launched. (Photo contests, etc.)

NUBIJA (Public bicycle service of Changwon city in Korea) song:

 

Suzanne Lareau – Velo-Quebec

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!

“We want results- we work to get it.”

“When you realize projects, you need money. When you own a house, it’s different [having equity]. So we changed our rapport with our bank. [By purchasing a building.]”

“We have to work with the perception ‘winter is not a barrier.’”

 

Dr. Hanz Micheal Kloth- Secretary General of the International Transport Forum

“We are the only transportation NGO, a think tank for OECD members.”

“Cycling can provide good economic savings for austerity; this is something politicians like to hone in on.”

“It’s hard for activists to press their politicians – because the benefit is not immediately there.”

“The goal is to make policy that empowers people and not vehicles.”

“I am sure that you are the ones that can bring a lot of innovative ideas to this situation…

You will interest ministers of finance and ministers of health.”

 

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