Events Photo Credit: Design Talks Institute

Why It’s Important to Design with Connectivity in Mind

Amery Cavelli gives us the scoop on the Design Talk Institute’s upcoming panel discussion in Calgary.

With today’s technology, we have the world at our fingertips: food and clothes can be purchased with the touch of a button, communicating is done with a simple swipe—even our daily commutes are influenced by the latest apps and gadgets. But even with all of this technology, our transit systems can still be improved for accessibility and inclusivity. Which is exactly why the Calgary’s Design Talks Institute (d.talks) has decided to chat about it at their next panel discussion. At Let’s Talk About…Connectivity, city engineers, architectural and design workers, and business district representatives from across Canada will discuss fostering connected and vibrant communities through transit-oriented development.

“Access is about designing for the interest of people,” says d.talks Executive Director, Amery Cavelli. “Transit begins as soon as we walk outside our front doors with infrastructure: the sidewalks, the streets, the closest transit stop.” For example, an individual’s closest transit stop may be only one kilometre from their home, but for someone with mobility, hearing or sight impairments, that distance can be a lot to overcome—it’s something we need to take into consideration when building our communities. “Accessibility needs to be a priority for people who don’t drive their own vehicle,” adds Cavelli. “Transit is about connection and inclusiveness.”

The Panelists

Alison Karim-McSwiney is the executive director of the International Avenue BRZ. With a particular focus on community revitalization, she’s been behind some of the business districts’s vision for transit, pedestrian and bicycle corridors along 17th Avenue SE in Calgary.

Fabiola MacIntyre is an engineer and the acting project director for the Green Line LRT with over 14 years of experience in both the public and private sectors. She has a growing list of successful projects including the Crowfoot LRT Extension, and Metis/64th Avenue Interchange.

Antonio Gomez-Palacio is internationally recognized for working with cities to transform them into vibrant communities. He has worked on LRT projects for Mississauga, Brampton and Edmonton, downtown plans for Halifax and Regina, campus plans for Seneca and Laurentian University.

Todd Hirsch (Moderator) is the Chief Economist of ATB Financial. He has more than 20 years of experience working for organizations such as Canadian Pacific Railway, the Canada West Foundation and the Bank of Canada.

Josh White is the General Manager of Development for Dream Unlimited. He has extensive experience in in urban development and planning and a passion for creating better cities.


Let’s Talk About…Connectivity

When: Monday, December 4
Where: Scandinavian Centre, 739 20th Avenue NW, Calgary
Tickets: $12 adult; $6 student (available here)

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