Are you passionate about cities? Want to know more about public transport?
If so then you might be interested in an upcoming event being held at the University of Auckland: “Get Connected – Futures in Public Transport” (NB: The link takes you to the Facebook page for the event, where you can RSVP). On the night (19 March) you will get the opportunity to hear from the following speakers:
- Jarrett Walker – who has 20 years experience working on public transport projects across the Asia-Pacific, especially the U.S., Australia, and New Zealand. FYI Jarrett was the lead consultant on the recent re-design of Auckland’s PT network. Jarrett currently resides in Portland but – as mentioned in this earlier post – he has a soft-spot for Auckland, which he describes as:
“… New Zealand’s largest city, the focal point of an agrarian nation’s ambivalence about urban life. If you’re a young North American who wonders what Seattle was like 40 years ago when I was a tyke — before Microsoft, Amazon, and Starbucks — Auckland’s your answer. To a visitor accustomed to North American or European levels of civic vanity, it often seems that Auckland still doesn’t know how beautiful it is. That’s always an attractive feature, in cities as in people, even though (or perhaps because) it can’t possibly last.”
- Anthony Cross – who is employed by Auckland Transport in the enviable position of “Public Transport Network Planning Manager” (aka “PTNPM”). Anthony was raised in Auckland but spent much of his early professional career working in Wellington. After helping the Capital’s public transport network become one of the most efficient and effective in Australasia, he was kidnapped by our oompa loompas and brought to Auckland. We managed to convince him to stay after promising him a job title that sounded important but was difficult to say.
- Joshua Arbury – since founding the Auckland Transport Blog (I can hear the cries of gleeful appreciation resonate across Auckland) Josh has upped sticks and moved onto greener – in the money sense – transport pastures at the Auckland Council, where he now occupies the position of Principal Transport Planner. My oompa loopma spies at Council inform me Josh can speak knowledgeably and with ease on any transport and land use topic, particularly the transport sections of the Auckland Plan. And that he loves his daughters.
- Pippa Mitchell – last but certainly not least we have Pippa. In her career Pippa has worked on a range of complex and fascinating projects, such as the roll-out of real-time information at bus stops. She has also worked on some not so interesting projects (haven’t we all!), such as bus stop re-locations. I would expect Pippa to inject some level-headed reality into the evening’s discourse, because we don’t want anyone to finish the evening having listened to Jarrett, Anthony, and Josh and come away thinking that it’s all drugs, sex, and rock-n-roll in this industry.
That’s not all. In between these distinguished and knowledgeable speakers you will also get to hear from our very own Patrick Reynolds; a man who is known for his enthusiasm, beautiful photos, and occasional words of random wisdom.
You know that if you give enough monkeys enough time banging away on a keyboard then chances are they will eventually churn out a word-for-word version of Hamlet? Well the same goes for Patrick when he’s talking about transport – eventually, and after much gnashing of teeth, he will say things that are both intelligent and witty. If for nothing else, you should come along to the evening and listen to Patrick (NB: Patrick I do love you).
Here’s the event flyer if you’re interested (kudos to Kent); please remember to RSVP through the Facebook event page for catering purposes. Important notes:
- For those not in Auckland we will try to video the event so it can subsequently be uploaded on onto the blog; and
- The point of the event is to get people (especially students) thinking about PT careers. It is not to debate the PT situation in Auckland.
P.P.s You will note that some of the people in the photo below are illuminated. This represents current peak hour bus mode share, i.e. a little less than half of people travelling into the city in peak periods arrive by bus.