Mikael Colville-Andersen is a world-leading urban planning / transportation planning consultant. His focus is on human-powered transport, especially the bicycle, and humanizing cities (at least, that’s how I would summarize it). His blog, Copenhagenize, is one of the few urban planning blogs I follow, and I am pretty much always eager to check out his new posts.

Mikael, who is based in Copenhagen (arguably the best large city in the world for biking — it and Amsterdam are in constant competition for that title), travels the world to consult for cities, companies, organizations, and citizens. Recently, he was a speaker at a TEDx conference in Germany. Of course, it was an interesting presentation and I think well worth a watch, so here it is:

To see the text of the speech, head on over to this Copenhagenize post.

Some of the key points of the speech worth picking out and highlighting in a bullet-point list (at least, imho) are thus:

  • Good urban or transportation planning requires close observation of people, and how they use the spaces of a city.
  • Design should be an integral part of transportation planning and engineering.
  • Good design often doesn’t require complex analysis, just careful and open-minded observation and logical thinking.
  • Traffic engineers and planners need to go out and experience their cities as pedestrians and bicyclists (not just sit behind a computer) — seems obvious, but this is actually the exception rather than the norm.
  • Even kids can do a better job designing streets than many of our traffic engineers have done.
  • An absurd number of people are killed every day from cars and bad transportation design (i.e. traffic engineering) — this isn’t a must, but we have come to accept it as the norm, rather than find ways to solve this massacre of human life.

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Written by Zach

is the director of CleanTechnica, the most popular cleantech-focused website in the world, and Planetsave, a world-leading green and science news site. He has been covering green news of various sorts since 2008, and he has been especially focused on solar energy, electric vehicles, and wind energy since 2009.

Aside from his work on CleanTechnica and Planetsave, he's the founder and director of Solar Love, EV Obsession, and Bikocity.

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