Best Ever Podcast Interview of Me

invisible city logoIn her spare time, Toronto Chief Planner Jennifer Keesmaat hosts a podcast series called Invisible City.  Her hour-long sessions go deeply into a
n interesting urbanist topic, and recently she did an interview of me.  We were both having great fun, and it turned into the best long-form interview that I’ve done.  (This 2012 Colin Marshall interview — which is more personal and where my ideas were much less clearly formed, is the only one that comes close.)

Jennifer skillfully provoked a discussion that requires no geekery to follow.  You can share it with your friends who have only the vaguest notion of what transit is, and many, I think, will still enjoy it.  There are a few
Toronto references, but nothing that will baffle a reader from elsewhere.

It’s here.  Hope you enjoy.


2 Responses to Best Ever Podcast Interview of Me

  1. Michael August 21, 2017 at 1:13 pm #

    I really enjoyed this. Great thoughts; great conversation. However, at minute 50 the interviewer said, “…the beautiful part of the urban environment… at it’s heart is about plurality: a plurality of experiences, a plurality of ideas, and really ensuring that those values somehow can permeate beyond just those urban areas strikes me as being a critical part to continuing to have a civil society that’s going to flourish.”

    When she said this I cringed. I support the value of plurality of ideas and experiences, but saying that a critical part of having a civil society is for urban values to be spread to non-urban areas comes across as elitist and patronizing to non-urban people. That line wonderfully expresses the attitude so many rural folks rightfully push against. Being from and loving the rural lifestyle myself, I dislike this kind of statement (even though I now work in urban transit and support ideas of density as well). There are many diverse and intellectual rural folks too.

    I really appreciated that you pointed out that it’s easy to sit and say that as urban intellectuals, but that non-urban experiences have merit in how they view transit issues. I don’t want urban/rural to be at war either. I love my 4 wheel drive truck for going down those dirt roads in winter I’d never justify a bus to go down! And when I’m in the city, I don’t want to be in my car.

  2. Steve S August 29, 2017 at 8:55 am #

    Jennifer Keesmaat will have lots of spare time now, having announced her planned resignation as Toronto’s Chief Planner. It’ll be interesting to see what the next Chief brings to the table.