Gil's work is grounded on a simple but powerful idea:

What if everything we did in our cities was great for an 8-year-old and an 80-year-old?

How does Gil do it?

Gil tailors his approach to meet your needs. Since the context of each city is different, he will work with you to develop a customized approach. The most popular format is the keynote- a dynamic, entertaining, and compelling presentation that will inspire action and forever change the way people think about cities. If you are looking for a more hands-on approach, Gil also offers master classes and strategic advising.

Gil’s presentations are always captivating, but more importantly, Gil strives to make every interaction useful. This means that each conversation, meeting, workshop, or presentation contributes to the goals of the people that hire him. For this to happen, every project is informed by a preliminary survey, telephone conversations, and research. Gil’s presentations always include curated examples and images so that they resonate with each specific audience.

Formats, all available in person or virtual

Inspirational Keynotes

Whether for an audience of 5000 or 50, Gil delivers dynamic, entertaining, and inspirational presentations that will forever change the way you think about creating great cities for ALL.

Master Class

Our Master Class focuses on delivering specific learning objectives and giving participants the tools to “move from talking to doing”.

Strategic Advising

With a big picture perspective and years of professional experience, let us be your sounding board for developing successful mobility and public space projects.

Focus Areas

NEW keynote and master class:
OUR THIRD ACT Older: Healthier & Happier.
How to Create Vibrant & Healthy Cities for Older Adults

Too often society ignores older people as if they had died, when a third of our lives take place in later years. Older are givers, not takers. Older are assets to our communities, not liabilities. Citizens Alive is a loud cry to create cities where all older people will live healthier and happier.

Post COVID-19 People & Cities.
People: Healthier & Happier
Cities: Equitable & Sustainable
(Core Presentation, targeted to each specific audience)

This is the most requested focus area, especially for Gil’s keynotes. This theme provides a general overview of Gil’s key messages on how to create a vibrant city, with healthy communities where all people will live happier. It includes some of the other presentations but in a general view, such as sustainable mobility, parks and public spaces, Ciclovia, etc. If you are interested in going deeper, there is the option to start with a general keynote and then address other topics through either a follow-up workshop at the same event or in a future visit.

Children and Cities:

If a city is safe and enjoyable for children, it will be great for everyone else. Unfortunately, in the past 100 years we have been designing cities thinking more about cars than people, least of all children. This focus area touches similar topics to the general focus area but it is centred on imagining, designing and creating child-centered cities, where every policy, action and infrastructure is executed with children in mind.

Sustainable Mobility:

Everybody walks. In fact, every trip begins and ends with walking. Sidewalks are the most important infrastructure in any city, as walking is about more than just walking. It provides people of all ages with a healthy and affordable means of getting around. With an emphasis on sustainable mobility, including walking, riding bicycles, taking public transit, and new uses of cars, this focus area also highlights connections to economic development, the environment, public health and other topics.

Urban Parks:

Should cities have small parks or large ones? The answer is both, as they satisfy very different needs. Cities need a park system with diverse parks that allow for active, passive, and contemplative uses. This focus area places special emphasis on park management. In most cities it is easier to find millions of dollars to build parks than it is to find the thousands required to make them work. Management is about park uses and activities, community engagement, and linking parks with other public spaces such as schools, libraries, streets, sidewalks, and more. Gil utilizes his vast experience in creating and designing parks worldwide to identify the particular needs of each neighbourhood and bring forward the best proposal.

Parks, Streets & Other Public Spaces:

This focus area builds on the urban parks area, emphasizing links between parks and other public spaces, especially streets. When we look at cities from the air, it becomes obvious that streets are important public spaces, making up 25 – 40% of our urban spaces. Importantly, streets are about more than just moving cars. They can have different uses depending on the time of day, day of week or week of year. Emphasis is also placed on the sidewalk. Sidewalks are more than just links to the street- they connect people to parks, and we have to start looking at them with this in mind.

Ciclovia / Open Streets:

Gil led the creation of the ‘new ciclovia’ in Bogota where his team took an existing program that was small and deteriorating, and then transformed it into the world’s largest pop-up park. Each Sunday and every holiday, the city opens 121 kilometers (75 miles) of streets to people and closes them to cars. That’s when the magic happens! Over 1.7 million people come out to walk, bike, skate and to enjoy each other’s company. Gil has had a direct impact in the creation of hundreds of similar programs around the world and presents insights around the why and how of ciclovia. Especially important is creating a place for social integration, where all people meet each other as equals.

Additional Services at No Cost

We want to collaborate as much as possible to transform cities into vibrant and healthy communities for all People.

One of the ways we do it is by providing the following additional benefits at no extra cost:

Additional presentations:

When Gil is hired to deliver a keynote at an event, usually the opening, we offer to deliver at no cost, the same presentation to two additional audiences of interest to the client, time permitting. We suggest reaching out to people that are unlikely to attend the main event, including elected officials, public sector staff from various departments including planning, transportation, public health, environment, parks, economic development, as well as community groups, university students and faculty across disciplines, and business leaders, etc.

Media engagement:

Gil is available to be contacted by media before, during and after the visit to each city. He feels that media is an important tool to reach people that may not be interested in or who oppose the ideas behind creating healthy and vibrant cities for all.

Presentation PDF:

The client can request a summary of the presentation which will be given in PDF file. Due to copyright issues, the PowerPoint version will not be provided, but the PDF will have at least 100 slides.

Video:

The client is permitted to produce a video of Gil’s presentation, including images of all slides, and use it as they see fit. All we ask is to have a copy of the file.

Clients:

We work with diverse clients including both public and private sector organizations. Our work naturally intersects with several fields including urban planning and transportation, but also public health, parks and recreation, education, and economic development.

Interested in working with Gil?

Please contact us by clicking the "Get in touch" button and tell us about your interest

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