A few weeks ago I wrote the very first In Tandem blog post entitled “What is Tactical Urbanism?” and was blown away by the response. That post mainly focused on it going mainstream in 2020 with councils suddenly embracing tactical urbanism as a way of quickly providing safe space for active travel and social distancing during Covid. However, the origin of tactical urbanism is residents undertaking direct action to make their streets safer and while it’s great that it is being embraced by councils, there’s still work to be done and opportunities for citizens to use tactical urbanism to push for faster change.
In this edition we delve into the thinking behind our most popular design: “that’s how I roll”. It features a selection of non-standard cycles: a tricycle, handcycle, recumbent cycle and a cargo bike, the phrase “that’s how I roll” and the hashtag #BeyondTheBicycle. The idea behind our design is that, for many people, bikes and non-standard cycles give people more transport options and independence so the phrase is quite literal: enabling people undertake journeys by bike that may not otherwise be possible. This may be due to a disability or, in the case of cargo bikes, because they have children, shopping - or even freight! - to carry.
So, you may have seen that we have a design called “Tactical Urbanist” where the letters are made up of things like bikes, traffic cones and skipping ropes. In this blog post I’ll try to explain a bit about what tactical urbanism is and why it’s an important tool in the armoury for creating safer streets and doing it fast.