Archive for Swedish-American Bicentennial Grant

This weeks alumni profile: Paul Casey from Santa Monica

Name: Paul Casey

When, where & what you studied in Sweden?SONY DSC

Recipient of 2011 Swedish-American Bicentennial Grant. I spent  three weeks in September 2011 in Malmö, Lund, Stockholm and Göteborg researching my topic, Sustainable Urban Transportation and Integrated Land Use, Latest Innovations from Sweden. My very helpful and gracious contacts were municipal planning staff, regional transit agency staff, academics and consultants.  I have made presentations of my findings at the Urban Land Institute Annual Conference on Transit Oriented Development, the Sierra Club (the world’s original environmental NGO),  city planning and public health students at the University of Southern California, the School of Architecture and Design of the University of Louisiana, to planning and traffic engineering  staff of the City of Los Angeles  Department  of Transportation, the Southern California Association of Governments and to various community groups.

Current occupation & work:
I am the public transportation planner for the City of Santa Monica, California. Currently I’m participating on a National Academy of Sciences, Washington DC research panel to produce national guidelines for local administrations to integrate bus priority lanes and bus stops with bicycle paths and other uses on urban streets using inspiration from Swedish examples. I’m actually returning to Sweden for a Los Angeles-Sweden transportation and parking policy symposium on May 20th that I helped organize with friends I made at KTH (Royal Institute of Techonology).


The Lund Link Bus Way even provides a path for four-legged transportation


Strongest memory from Sweden:
I was astonished by the the Swedes’ connoisseurship of endless varieties of pickled herring. They savour the “vintage” of pickled herring in the manner and with the devotion that people in other countries have for wines from different regions and particular estates except in this case it is particular inlets and coasts. My strongest memory from my research would be the Lund Link bus way that manages to cut elegantly and even discretely through the middle of Lund University and even includes a bridal path for horses!

Your best recommendation to new students in Sweden?
Read August Strindberg’s novel The Red Room taking care to find the places mentioned on a map of Stockholm. Walk to the same squares and vista points as the characters. Note: an excellent English translation can be found in the Si shop.

The largest living things on Earth

The largest living things on Earth


Paul also wanted to share a glimse from home and says:

“Everyone sees Santa Monica’s Pacific Ocean Beach and surrounding Los Angeles on the movies all the time so eventhough I like urban studies, I wanted to share my other passion and favorite weekend escape to the largest living things on Earth; The Giant Sequoia trees in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. They are at least 100 meters tall and 4,000 years old“.