The 10th Most Influential Streetfilm of All Time

With the 10-year benefit for Streetsblog and Streetfilms coming up on November 14 (get your tickets here!), we are counting down the 12 most influential Streetfilms of all time, as determined by the impresario himself, Clarence Eckerson Jr. If you’re just tuning in, catch up on #12 (Lakewood, Ohio: The Suburb Where Everyone Can Walk to School) and #11 (Mark Gorton Interviews Enrique Penalosa).

Zurich: Where People Are Welcome and Cars Are Not

Number of Plays: 41,000

Publish Date: October 25, 2014

Why is it here? Variety! This is probably the Streetfilm that best illustrates how several overlapping policies can fit together to deliver exceptional streets and transportation. It captures how parking restrictions, quality transit, and traffic management all complement each other.

And you have to love a city with a “Historic Compromise” that capped the number of parking spaces in the downtown. With this Streetfilm, you can clearly see how deemphasizing the automobile has made the city more welcoming for people.

Fun fact:  Making this piece entailed the longest Streetfilm post-production ever. I shot most of it in August 2013, 14 months before the final cut was posted. To put that in perspective, I assemble most Streetfilms in days or weeks, or at most a few months. I struggled mightily to bring all the parts of this Streetfilm together, then it finally gelled when I interviewed Professor Norman Garrick from UConn about his time studying transportation in Zurich. His personal narrative gave the film a much needed cohesion and perspective.