The Breakdown

Explaining Southern California's economy

Out and About: Forward Motion at Art Center College of Design

Posting will be light today, as I'm attending the Forward Motion symposium on mobility and urban transit at Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, moderating and co-moderating some panel discussions. The focus of the symposium is to bring mobility experts from the U.S. and Canada together to talk about how design can provide some solutions to the contemporary problem of moving people around.

This is the kind of conversation that engineers, economists, politicians, and policy wonks have all the time. But the design community brings its own unique perspective, mainly by being able to think beyond urban transportation as a project-by-project challenge. Designers are good at seeing both the big picture and how all the moving parts of the big picture fit together. A lot of times, they can offer a "third way," between government and business solutions that may have been tried, successfully and unsuccessfully, dozens of times. They "think different," indeed!

Obviously, this is something we're beginning to tackle in Southern California, where the car is king and will remain so for a while, but where big urban transit projects are in demand by voters and supported by politicians and the private sector.

I'll be blogging about what I learn at the symposium, and also tweeting during the day about what's debated and discussed.

Follow Matthew DeBord and the DeBord Report on Twitter.

Photo: Art Center College of Design

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