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January book of the month: Inclusive Transportation by Veronica O. Davis

Susan Gaeddert is Community Programs Director at 1000 Friends of Wisconsin, where she runs Active Wisconsin, facilitates the Community Transportation Academy, and coordinates the Wisconsin Climate Table.


Happy new year! Every month of 2024 I will post a short review of a book about transportation, land use, climate resilience, city planning, or a related topic. Some are new books and others have been around a while and are worth another read. Have you read any good books lately that I should add to the list? Email me at susan@1kfriends.org 



“Hell hath no fury like a community that may lose parking.”


When I read that sentence in the preface of Inclusive Transportation: A Manifesto for Repairing Divided Communities by Veronica O. Davis, I knew I was in for a good book. I was not disappointed.


Inclusive Transportation was published in the middle of 2023. The book joins the growing chorus of transportation advocates and professionals who are pushing back against the status quo of building more roads and wider highways at the expense of safety, equity, and the environment. There is no denying the impact automobiles have had on the built environment since they were introduced to American society 100 years ago. Shifting away from prioritizing vehicles and making people the center of street design and transportation planning is a long road (pun intended), but one worth traveling.


Veronica O. Davis offers her invaluable perspective as a Black woman with professional training and experience as an engineer and city planner. Each chapter explores a different aspect of transportation planning and includes practical questions practitioners should ask themselves throughout the planning process, especially in regards to public engagement. Davis weaves her own stories throughout the book, which is a constant reminder to the reader that Transportation is Personal (the title of Chapter 1). Her professional expertise shines through when she explores the topics of equity, power, and influence in the world of transportation planning. 


Above all, Davis is honest and straightforward about the problems of modern-day transportation planning and what we can do to create a better future for ourselves. I highly recommend this book.


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