Our Urban Future Starts with Today's Sustainable Mobility

Photo by Katia Taylor

The future is urban: the population of the world's cities now grows by a million people a week—which means a metropolis the size of New York is added to the global urban population every two months. How can we ensure that the cities we're building will make us happy, healthy, and connected?

For award-winning author Taras Grescoe, the answer is clear. In the twenty-first century, the most successful cities will be built around subways and Skytrains, commuter rail and tramways, light rail and bus rapid transit. Walkable neighborhoods, well-designed public space, and superior bicycle infrastructure are a crucial part of the mix. But the key to making our cities sustainable, accessible, and equitable lies in planning for great public transit.

In his internationally acclaimed book Straphanger (Henry Holt, HarperCollins), Grescoe visited fourteen cities around the world, from Bogotá to Tokyo, to look at which places are getting the sustainable mobility formula right. He is also a leading voice on urbanism, whose writing on cities has appeared on the op-ed page of the New York Times, The Guardian, Monocle, and The Atlantic's CityLab. A familiar presence on CBC radio, television, and NPR, he has been named one of the top influencers on the theme of urban transportation on Twitter.

Grescoe's popular presentation on the best (and worst) in transit and mobility has seen him speaking to audiences on three continents. In dozens of keynotes, from Shanghai to Portland by way of London and Halifax, he has delivered a nuanced message about the future of urbanism, the perils of planning cities around freeways and cars, and such offbeat mobility solutions as the outdoor escalators of South America and the mini-metros of Italy.

Keywords: sustainable mobility / public transit / public transportation / sustainability / urbanism / bicycles / walkable / cities / speakers / keynote

Past Engagements

Oregon Transportation Congress at Portland State University / Keynote
Portland, Oregon

Ontario Good Roads Association / Panel member on bicycle infrastructure with Mikael Colville-Andersen and Toronto’s chief planner, Jen Keesmaat
Toronto, Ontario

CityLab Conference / Invitee London, England

University of Waterloo’s annual Planning alumni talk / Keynote
Toronto, Ontario

SPUR Festival: The City in Seven Years / Keynote
Vancouver, British Columbia

Michelin Movin’On Conference / Invitee
Montreal, Quebec

Greentopia Conference / Keynote
Rochester, New York

City of Edmonton: “Let’s Talk Transit” / Keynote
Edmonton, Alberta

Calgary Economic Development: “Soul of the City” / Keynote
Calgary, Alberta

Transit Talk series (on Waterloo’s upcoming light rail) / Keynote
Kitchener-Waterloo, Ontario

Canadian Institute of Planners annual conference / Keynote Saskatoon, Saskatchewan

Kings University School of Journalism / Straphanger Keynote
Halifax, Nova Scotia

Moses Znaimer’s Idea City conference / Straphanger PowerPoint
Toronto, Ontario

Canadian Urban Transit Association conference / Keynote
Gatineau, Quebec


To book Taras for speaking engagements, contact:

Lauren Morocco (she/her/hers)
Director, Publicity
HarperCollins Publishers Ltd

You can contact Taras directly at tgrescoe (at) gmail (dot) com