Role of transportation in developing attractive, inclusive and healthy cities for people

Below is a report from Aleh Kliatsko and Andrey Edemsky who received a grant to organise an event in Moscow on the role of transportation in developing attractive, inclusive and healthy cities:

Illustration by Anastasiya Andrukovich

In October 2014, the Swedish Institute and the Embassy of Sweden in Moscow organized the kick-off of the local SI Alumni Network. It was a great evening for networking and sharing experiences. During the event there was opportunity to discuss how a local Moscow-based SI alumni network in Russia could be formed. In order to keep the momentum of the successful kick-off meeting and continue building the local SI Alumni network in the Moscow area, a new alumni event has been organized under the title ”Role of transportation in developing attractive, inclusive and healthy cities for people”, highlighting experiences both from Stockholm and Moscow.

The event was organized by SI alumni Aleh Kliatsko and Andrey Edemsky with support of the Swedish Institute and has been held at Scandinavia
Club.

First arrivals
Photo: Aleh Kliatsko

The four-hour programme included:
• arrival and registration;
• opening and introduction to the programme (by Aleh Kliatsko);
• self-presentation of guests;
• the presentations by the main speakers of the event Andrey Edemsky (Chief of transport planning division at transport institute “MosgortransNIIproect”, Moscow) and through Skype – Daniel Firth (Chief strategy officer at city of Stockholm traffic administration);
• film screening.

After each presentation there was time for discussions regarding the subject.

Andrey Edemsky spoke in particular that:

“The advantages of automobile transportation goes hand in hand with disadvantages such as a high accident rate, congestion, low quality of urban environment (water, air, soil and visual pollution, noise), and urban segregation. One may also blame cars for users’ low physical activity and the growth of associated various deceases. The cost of car use gets too high for our cities. In current conditions cities have to change the traditional transport policies contributing to higher motorization. Moscow is not an exception. During last years the vector of transport development has been changed: government invests in public transit, introduces new parking policies, and improves quality of pedestrian infrastructure. Recently Moscow has started cycling infrastructure development.”

Photo: Aleh Kliatsko

Daniel Firth has concluded his presentation that “Stockholm is developing in a positive way.

Traffic and urban environment are the challenges which can be managed though:

• Building dense, mixed neighborhoods;
• Improving infrastructure, especially for public transit;
• Reallocating road space for walking, cycling, personal transportation, and urban realm;
• Managing demand for road travel”.

Then there was a film screening of Bikes vs. Cars by Filmmaker Fredrik Gertten (watch on here).

Illustration from http://www.bikes-vs-cars.com

This very interesting documentary had its Russian premiere at the SI Alumni event.

The event ended with a mingle to continue networking and discussion.

Thanks to everyone who helped to create such a great evening!

P.S. Glad to notice that the next SI Alumni event in Moscow “Our journey after SI Management Program” will be organized by Olga Ryabova and this event will definitely contribute to further development of the Alumni Network in Moscow.