Enrique Penalosa coming to San Francisco

June 22, 2009 at 10:03 pm Leave a comment

The San Francisco Great Streets Project is excited to be hosting Enrique Penalosa, former mayor of Bogota, Colombia and international expert on the urban public realm, on July 6th and 7th. Penalosa will be speaking at a variety of events while he’s in town, including a public forum on Tuesday, July 7th at the Main San Francisco Public Library:

Sunday Streets to Great Streets: Enrique Penalosa, Former Mayor of Bogota, Colombia
& San Francisco Great Streets Project Launch Celebration

Tuesday, July 7th 5:30-7:30 pm
Koret Auditorium, Main Public Library in San Francisco (100 Larkin)

Valet bicycle parking provided.

Meet Enrique Penalosa, former Mayor of Bogota, Colombia and internationally-renowned innovator in the fields of transportation, housing and land use for large cities, as he discusses how San Francisco can learn from international best practices in urban public space development. San Francisco’s successful Sunday Streets program is based on Penalosa’s wildly popular “Ciclovia” system in Bogota. Thanks to Mayor Penalosa, Bogota has also become an international gold standard for Bus Rapid Transit. Penalosa will discuss how San Francisco can accomplish and benefit from further improvements to our city’s public realm.

This event will also celebrate the launch of the San Francisco Great Streets Project, a new campaign to catalyze the return of our city’s streets to their rightful place as the center of civic life in this wonderful city by working with government, business, and neighborhood leaders to test, analyze and institutionalize placemaking.

This is not a library sponsored event.

Penalosa’s visit is courtesy of ITDP.   

Enrique Penalosa’s Biography

An accomplished public official, economist and administrator, Enrique Peñalosa completed his three-year term as Mayor of Bogotá, Colombia on December 31, 2000. While mayor, Peñalosa was responsible for numerous dramatic improvements to the city and its citizens. He promoted a city model giving priority to children and public spaces and restricting private car use, building hundreds of kilometers of sidewalks, bicycle paths, pedestrian streets, greenways, and parks. After organizing a Car-Free Day in 2000, he was awarded the Stockholm Challenge Award and rewarded by a referendum vote endorsing an annual car-free day and further major public street improvements. He was integral in developing the TransMilenio bus rapid transit system.

Peñalosa also led efforts to improve Bogotá’s marginal neighborhoods through citizen involvement, planted more than 100,000 trees and turned a deteriorated downtown avenue into a dynamic pedestrian public space. He helped transform the city’s attitude from one of negative hopelessness to one of pride and hope, developing a model for urban improvement based on the equal rights of all people to transportation, education, and public spaces.

Previous positions include Managing Director, Arthur D. Little Consulting, Colombian Office; President, Colombian Institute of Mortgage Banks (ICAV); Economic Secretary to the Colombian President; Dean of the Business Administration Faculty at Externado de Colombia University; Commercial and Administrative Vice-president of the Bogotá Water and Sewage Company, among others. He was elected to the House of the Representatives of the Colombian Congress and to the Bogotá City Council.

He has been awarded the Eisenhower Fellowship, National Simon Bolivar Prize for Journalism; Prize of the Society of Economists of Bogotá and Cundinamarca; selected in 1986 as one of the Best Young Colombian Leaders by the Cámara Junior and was awarded a full Scholarship to Duke University. The City of Bogotá was awarded the National Colombian Architecture Prize, thanks to Peñalosa’s park development program. Most recently, Penalosa was awarded the Goteborg Award for Sustainable Development for his design and application of urban development in Colombia’s capital city.


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Our Mission

The San Francisco Great Streets Project catalyzes the return of our city’s streets to their rightful place as the center of civic life in this wonderful city by working with government, business, and neighborhood leaders to test, analyze and institutionalize placemaking.


Kit Hodge
San Francisco Great Streets Project
995 Market Street, #1550
San Francisco, CA 94103
kit [at] sfgreatstreets DOT org
415-431-2453 x313

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