Better Environmentally Sound Transportation (B.E.S.T.) is a
non-profit Vancouver-based organization working to make communities
healthier places to live by promoting sustainable transportation, better
land-use planning, and the creation of pedestrian, cycling and transit-
To this end, B.E.S.T. has produced a toolkit to help communities deal
with local transportation issues. Ask yourself the following questions:
Is my neighbourhood being taken over by gas guzzling Sport Utility
Vehicles? Am I concerned about the lack of transportation alternatives
in my neighbourhood? Is traffic noise keeping me from enjoying being out
in my yard? Do I want to encourage people to get out of their cars and
onto their bikes?
Reclaim your neighbourhood, and create an alternative
vision! Neighbourhoods are meant for people, not automobile traffic.
Unsure where and how to begin improving transportation and liveability
options in your neighbourhood? Enter stage right: The B.E.S.T. Advocacy
Toolkit! It’s all you need to get moving for change in one neat little
Four well written, approachable booklets cover the basics of
transportation advocacy. Building a Liveable Neighbourhood describes
"liveable" neighbourhoods, provides inspirational success
stories, and tells us how we can start building them. It covers topics
like greenways, bikeways, pedestrian-friendly facilities, and traffic
calming. How to Organize a Bike Week Event describes how to promote one
of the most efficient forms of sustainable transportation – cycling
– in your neighbourhood. Step-by-step instructions cover everything
you need to know in order to host a successful Bike Week event. Working with
the Media and How to Lobby will show you how to take transportation
advocacy to the next level: the public sphere.
Other resources include a slide show, which explains how our reliance
on the car is adversely affecting the quality of life in our
neighbourhoods, and The Car and the City, a book by Northwest
Environment Watch founder Alan Thein Durning, which outlines 24 steps
for safe streets and healthy communities.
Imagine the street in front of your home as a place your children can
play without fear, a place where you and your neighbours gather to
socialize. Imagine sitting in your front yard and not feeling assaulted
by exhaust fumes or traffic
noise. It is possible and the B.E.S.T. Advocacy Toolkit can help you
build the kind of neighbourhood you want, instead of one that is
dictated by traffic.