Speakers and Performers
Journalist, Interactive Media, and Leader in NYC's Livable Streets Movement
Aaron Naparstek is a journalist, interactive media producer, and a leader in New York City’s livable streets movement. He is the founder and former editor-in-chief of Streetsblog.org, an advocacy-journalism project that has played an instrumental role in transforming New York and other cities by reversing decades of car-oriented urban planning in favor of sustainable streets that prioritize pedestrians, cyclists and transit riders.
Aaron got his start in transportation policy by writing haiku poetry about the seemingly endless horn-honking observed from his apartment window in Brooklyn. He taped his poems to lampposts and called them “Honku.” This seemingly quixotic project evolved into a successful movement that compelled city officials to fix his neighborhood’s dysfunctional street. It also became a book, Honku: The Zen Antidote to Road Rage, published by Random House in 2003.
In the decade since Honku.org, Naparstek’s innovative use of social media for community organizing and advocacy has led to the development of new bike lanes, public plazas, car-free parks and safer streets in his own Brooklyn neighborhood, across New York City and in cities around the world. Currently living in Cambridge, Massachusetts with his wife and two young sons Naparstek just completed a Loeb Fellowship at Harvard’s Graduate School of Design and is now conducting research and developing new projects as a Visiting Scholar at MIT’s Department of Urban Studies and Planning.
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