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Talking Safe Systems in Portland: Lennart Nout and Mary Elbech presenting at APBP

From the 25 to 28 of August, Portland, Oregon will host the Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle Professionals‘ (APBP) annual conference. Long heralded as one of America’s best cities for walking and cycling, the city will be a perfect backdrop for planners, engineers and transportation professionals to learn about best practices throughout North America and further afield.

Photo by Modacity

As a part of a larger trip to America’s West Coast, Lennart Nout and Mary Elbech will be presenting at two separate sessions during APBP focusing on transferable knowledge from the Dutch Safe Systems approach and North American best practices.

Lennart Nout

Panel Presentation: European inspired emerging best practices in bicycle facility design

Monday, 26 August; 1:45-3:15

This presentation will begin with the overarching framework regarding adapting European bicycle facility designs to North America. It will discuss how US history and the resulting built environment context sets us up for challenges and how some North American cities are having success overcoming those challenges. It will then delve into the emerging best practices in bicycle facility design from Europe. This includes protected intersections, the next generation of bicycle facilities from The Netherlands, traffic calming European rural roads, and new applications of advisory bike lanes.

Learning objectives:

  1. Gain insight into the context, challenges, and successes for implementing European bicycle facility designs in North America
  2. Understand what the next generation of bicycle facilities from The Netherlands are
  3. Learn about traffic calming European rural roads,  protected intersections, and new applications of advisory bike lanes


Mobile Tour: Balancing Place and Flow – An Analysis of Portland’s Shared Streets

Tuesday, 27 August; 9:45-12:15

Not just a facelift for city streets, shared spaces have had an influential role in progressing the goals of a Safe Systems approach. This mobile workshop will tour Portland’s shared spaces – from pedestrian streets to urban bicycle boulevards to level surface streets. A presentation on foot, each stop will be packed full of fascinating insight, including:

  • The role of shared streets in Safe Systems
  • Best design practices for shared streets
  • Striking the right balance between place and flow
  • When to mix and when to separate, at intersections
  • The stories our streets tell and intuitive design

Melissa Bruntlett

‘I believe that to create cities that work for every one, you have to tell a great story. Promoting multi-modal transportation to a mainstream audience means sharing the stories of the people who benefit from making communities more walkable and bikeable, and showing what is possible if we rethink the way we design our streets and public spaces. I strive to inspire people to create places where children can flourish, and where the simple act of moving through their city is a safe, simple, and enjoyable act.’

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