EPISODE 94 | 22 MINS
Biking as a Way of Life
WITH GRACE KYUNG
Making Urban Streets More Bicycle and Pedestrian Friendly
In This Episode:
[01:07] Guest Grace Kyung describes Trailnet.
[01:16] Grace shares what motivated her to become a bicycle and pedestrian planner.
[02:31] Grace tells what she’s learned and what we need to do to make communities more bikeable and pedestrian friendly.
[05:18] Grace explains what traffic calming is.
[06:25] Grace states how, at a local level, to start making communities more pedestrian friendly.
[10:05] Grace addresses the obstacles to redesigning bicycle- and pedestrian-friendly streets.
[14:42] Does St. Louis have a capital improvement plan that tells where the city will invest in infrastructure and when it will happen?
[15:41] Grace continues with strategies for making communities more pedestrian friendly.
[18:12] Grace tells where people can go to learn more about Trailnet.
[18:24] Grace mentions how communities can learn about becoming more pedestrian and bike friendly.
Guest and Organization:
Grace Kyung is the Special Projects Director at Trailnet, a non-profit improving walking, bicycling, and transit as a way of life. Grace provides technical assistance on how to improve the built environment to increase accessibility for all ages and abilities throughout the state of Missouri. Grace enjoys the challenges and opportunities of using tactical urbanism approaches to engage and educate stakeholders about safer street designs. Grace is interested in using place-based approaches to create healthy equitable communities. Before moving to St. Louis, Grace received a Masters in Public Health and Masters in Urban Planning from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. While a student, Grace ran a successful campaign to bring in a permanent funding source for bicycle-related projects at the university, led social justice campaigns, planned student service trips, and served on a local non-profit board. Grace serves as co-chair on the Healthy Communities Collaborative an interest group of the American Planning Association. She is focused on bridging the connection between public health and urban planning to address transportation and equity concerns. Grace enjoys conversations about how to create livable communities where people come first. Grace is a multi-modal commuter who loves riding her bike to find doughnuts and a good book to read.
For more than 25 years, Trailnet has brought together friends, organizations and people from many communities to create positive change in the St. Louis bi-state region by encouraging healthy, active living. Trailnet works to improve the quality of life for our families, neighbors, and communities. Their work and their partnerships directly impact local citizens, schools, businesses, communities, and nonprofit agencies throughout their region.
Take Away Quotes:
“So with how we’ve built our cities, and especially within the city of St. Louis, our streets are just overbuilt. We just have really wide travel lanes, and it’s just what people have gotten used to, so more people don’t feel comfortable walking or biking outside because it’s not as safe.”
“With the paradigm of how things have been, if we’re going to make actual shifts to address what the larger concerns are, we need to start looking at, from a community’s perspective, more of a grassroots level what’s going on with these communities, how are decisions made that the cities are built that way; and if we are trying to promote more walkable or bikeable infrastructure, is that through changing policies or is that how the city funds these sort of projects, and how do we work with the city in creating new structures?”
“In St. Louis, we’ve been having these deeper-level discussions of talking about ways that we can work with the community to understand even what they want in the first place and seeing how we can bring them the resources in order to walk or bike places.”
“It’s shown [nationally] that 12% of fatal crashes involve people walking; in St. Louis, that figure is 36%.”