A week-long summer course in Oxford, UK with leading experts in sustainable transportation and urban planning. Learn how to create walkable, bicycle-friendly and transit-oriented communities from theory to practice.

Livable communities across the globe are places where people can choose to walk or bicycle for everyday transportation, and have convenient access to high-quality transit options. Older cities and new developments alike serve as examples of sustainable urban planning. The principles behind livable communities have been the focus of researchers for decades, leading to exciting new theories. In practice, bicycle- and pedestrian-friendly developments near transit are being built in ever increasing numbers.

This course will explore these theories and practices with leading experts in sustainable development and urban planning from Britain and the United States. A week of morning and afternoon lectures and discussion will be supplemented with field trips to Oxford and London that showcase best practices in action. It is an opportunity for graduate students and practicing planners to further their professional development and receive credit.

After an introduction to the topic, David Banister and Robert Cervero will explore the role of transport in shaping the built environment. From walking cities to streetcar suburbs and the automobile, urban design and city size is governed by the principles of the available modes of transportation. The geography and history of these typologies will be presented. Sue Brownill will cover how communities interact with urban planning.

The second day will focus on creating walkable and bikable communities. John Pucher and Tim Jones will present case studies of places where walking and cycling are prominent modes of transportation, and how they got there. High quality infrastructure, cultural shifts, and public policy have all made an impact in communities that have embraced non-motorized transportation.

The connections between transportation, urban form, and climate change will be explored on the third day with Reid Ewing. Urban form and density play a role in what modes of transportation people choose to use, and the distances they must travel. The lecture will highlight places where the built environment has increased the use of sustainable transportation. In the afternoon, Robert Cervero and John Renne will present Transit Oriented Development (TOD), a theory and practice of clustering around transit stations. Dense, mixed-use development in these locations can help generate ridership for the transit mode, and offers residents and workers reliable and convenient access.

On the fourth day, Karen Anderton will wrap up the classroom portion with a discussion of the policies that need to be reshaped to achieve sustainable development in the 21st century. In the afternoon, the professors and students will take a field trip around their surroundings in Oxford, visiting examples of livable communities. The final day will also feature a field trip, a day long excursion to London. The class will have an opportunity to see the concepts explored in practice in a major global city. The field experiences will showcase how walkable, bicycle-friendly, and transit-oriented planning principles are creating healthy and sustainable communities.


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Transport Studies Unit, University of Oxford, and the University of New Orleans Transportation Institute

Transport Studies Unit, Oxford The Merritt C. Becker, Jr. University of New Orleans Transportation Institute (UNOTI)