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Public Transit Expert Headlines F. Alan Smith Lecture April 3 at Florida Tech

Event is Free and Open to the Public       

MELBOURNE, FLA. — An international consultant in public transit network design and policy will speak about his work around the world and offer insights intro Brevard County transit at the spring F. Alan Smith Distinguished Lecture Tuesday, April 3, at Florida Institute of Technology in Melbourne.

Jarrett Walker, whose Portland, Oregon-based firm Jarrett Walker + Associates has worked on public transit policy and design in 100 cities from Anchorage to Auckland, will speak and answer questions from 6-7:30 p.m. in the Hartley Room at the Denius Student Center.

His presentation is “Abundant Access: Planning Urban Transportation for a Free Society.” Here’s how it is described: “Cars seem to give us freedom, but only until we get stuck in traffic. What’s more, our car-centered transportation system is the opposite of freedom for people who can’t or shouldn’t drive. It can literally trap them in their homes, or endanger their lives if they try to walk or cycle. What would it mean to plan transportation with freedom as the primary goal? How do new technologies change our options? And how might our world be better as a result?”

The event is free and open to the public, but pre-registration is required by clicking here. It is being co-sponsored by the Melbourne Regional Chamber of East Central Florida and Rotary Club Indialantic.

Born in 1962, Walker grew up in Portland during a time when the city first made its decisive commitment to be focused on people rather than cars. He went on to earn his BA at Pomona College and a Ph.D. in theater arts and humanities at Stanford University.

A full-time consultant since 1991, Walker has led numerous major planning projects in cities and towns of all sizes across North America, Europe, Russia, Australia and New Zealand.  He is the author of the 2011 book, Human Transit: How Clearer Thinking About Public Transit Can Enrich Our Communities and Our Lives and runs the popular blog

The lecture series’ founder and benefactor, F. Alan Smith, has had a prestigious career in a transportation-related industry himself. He spent more than three decades in leadership positions at General Motors in the U.S. and Canada, including serving as executive vice president of finance of General Motors and president and general manager of General Motors of Canada, Ltd.

Smith, who now lives in Indialantic, has served on Florida Tech’s Board of Trustees since 1996.

The lecture series, which began in 2007 as the F. Alan Smith Visiting Executive Program, was created to attract corporate executives to speak to students, faculty and community leaders at Florida Tech. At least one executive speaker is welcomed to campus in both the fall and spring semesters.

Find out more about the series at For questions about the Walker lecture, contact Florida Tech’s Office of Development at 321-674-8962.


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