Advancing the observations of Jane Jacobs takes many forms, and one of the best routes for doing this is to get out and walk. When our Canadian colleagues and board members inaugurated the Jane’s Walk program, we jumped on board with them. With limited funds but unlimited energy, undergraduate students in the Department of City & Metropolitan Planning at the University of Utah assembled ways to bring this “gift to the world” to as many interested people in the United States as possible.
The first event was conducted on May 5, 2007 in Toronto by a group of Jacobs’ friends and colleagues who wanted to honor her ideas and legacy. Mayor David Miller declared it Jane Jacobs Day and twenty-seven local guides offered walks in neighborhoods where they worked, socialized and lived.
Over the years the program has expanded throughout the world, and together with our Canadian colleagues we have worked to bring the power of observation to communities as different as Anchorage, Alaska and Mumbai, India. Each year the program has increased its pace, and now has grown to include nearly 70 cities worldwide. Under the leadership of Stephen Goldsmith, Graduate and Undergraduate City & Metropolitan Planning students comprise and enthusiastic and hard working Jane Jacobs Walk team. Each year our Jane Jacobs Walk program is taking steps to bring the insights, community connections and power of observation to a diversity of neighborhoods in cities throughout the world.
For more information on how to find a Jane Jacobs Walk in your local community, visit our interactive map of 2012 events. Or, if you would like to host your own Jane Jacobs Walk, visit Host a Walk to find out how.