Street Talks; Machiavellian street design with John Dales

Street Talks returns to the Yorkshire Grey next Tuesday, 3rd July when John Dales will talk about Machiavellian Street Design - the art of the possible and the avoidance of self destruction.

As the cycling casualties climb here in London (see the latest news from TfL, here and here) concern is growing about how at the most fundamental level we keep our most vulnerable road users safe. Conversely, as the most vulnerable forms of transport are often the most economic for a city we look also to how we can invite more people to turn themselves in to a "vulnerable road user" - a hard PR ask if ever there was one.

But it doesn't have to be this way.  Our streets need not be places where people are purposefully put in danger, indeed they could be places where people can feel comfortable, where people feel engaged, where people go to spend time and be part of their community.
Good streets? Bad streets?

In his talk John Dales of design practice Urban Initiatives, will argue that too often streets with highly complex competing demands are influenced by a large number of people with competing interests.  In a world where "he who shouts loudest shouts last" John will explore how ordinary people, the actual users of streets, best go about influencing the professionals and politicians in ways that will have positive effect? What’s more, how can those same people help ensure that what they’re trying to achieve is indeed positive, not just something they personally believe to be right? 
John is a well known champion of the place and importance of good street design.  He's a director at Urban Initiatives and has considerable experience in the conception, design, execution and management of a wide range of urban transportation and traffic projects. He is a Trustee of Living Streets, on Transport for London’s Major Schemes Design Review Panel, a Design Surgeon for Urban Design London, a Design Council CABE Enabler, and a Board member of the Transport Planning Society. John writes a monthly column in Local Transport Today on ‘Transport in Urban Design’.
Join us as we share in John's considerable experience next Thursday at 7PM in the upstairs bar at the Yorkshire Grey.  As always the bar is open for food and drink from 6PM - arrive early to secure a place!
For further details, and to access the archive of all previous Street Talks see the Movement for Liveable London website.

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Nathan said...

Out here in the middle of nowhere (Alsager, South Cheshire) I always get envious when I see interesting bike events taking place in the metropolis. So thanks for the blog that keeps us non-Londoners in touch.

Please have a look at my blog about cycling in these parts at

ibikelondon said...

Thanks Nathan. Sometimes London has a lot going for it, sometimes not so much... If you use Twitter you can follow Tuesday evening's talk and contribute to the discussion yourself using the hashtag #streettalks

The blog is looking great by the way!

GreenComotion said...

Thanks for the Public Service Announcement. I won't be attending it, obviously, but I like the idea of such announcements as blog posts, nevertheless.

Paz :)