Polis, Hancock, Sadik-Khan: Highlights From Today’s Bicycle Conference
Colorado Gov. Jared Polis and Denver Mayor Michael Hancock gave uninspiring speeches at Bicycle Colorado’s Moving People Forward conference today in Denver. But the two followed Janette Sadik-Khan, the former New York City transportation commissioner whose book “Streetfight” calls for an “urban revolution.” (Read the Streetsblog Denver interview.)
Sadik-Khan helped the Big Apple transform its streets from dangerous, car-clogged parking lots into great places for walking, biking, transit and hanging out. But those upgrades required narrowing traffic lanes, removing parking spaces and even closing streets to cars. And Mayor Bloomberg, who she served, had to overcome — or ignore — ferocious opposition from neighborhood groups and the press as these changes were implemented.
Sadik-Khan gave her talk to a room of roughly 200, which included many civic leaders. She praised Denver’s investment in a regional rail network, but challenged the officials in the room to do even more.
“It is such an impressive down payment on the future of this region,” she said about FasTracks. “But you need to provide solutions in downtown so people can move around once they get there.”
The governor and mayor offered some good talking points, but neither indicated that they have the stomach for the backlash Bloomberg endured as Sadik-Khan transformed how New Yorkers get around.
Below are photos from the talks of the Governor, Mayor and Sadik-Khan followed by quotes, many from Bicycle Colorado’s tweets during the conference.
Colorado Gov. Jared Polis
“We’re proud of our Colorado way of life. We know it presents challenges to our infrastructure because of the growth we’ve had…as a society and a country, we need to transition away from greenhouse gases. Mobility is a huge part of that.” – @GovofCO — Bicycle Colorado (@BicycleColo) February 7, 2019
Denver Mayor Michael Hancock
“In addition to providing regional mobility, you need to focus on your downtowns” to get more people using transit and less people driving cars. – @JSadikKhan — Bicycle Colorado (@BicycleColo) February 7, 2019