Image by Mike Maguire licensed under Creative Commons.

With 2019 under way, lots of people are trying to follow through on their New Year’s resolutions. In the GGWash community, a number of folks have made urbanist resolutions this year, with the goal of improving their community in various ways.

GGWash Development Director Jane Green is trying to reduce her car use:

My goal is to replace car trips with biking when I can. I also want to bike to work more often (although my alternative is Metro, not driving). I got bike lights for Christmas to help make this possible.

Neighbor Chip Clemmer also plans to bike more, and to get more involved in supporting transit:

My goals for the new year [include becoming] more involved with different groups that are advocates for improving the public transportation systems in the DC metro area.

Contributor Bryan Barnett-Woods also points to the importance in showing up at local meetings, citing this handy list of urbanist resolutions:

Speak at City Hall in support of something good for your community and city, rather than just going to oppose things. And before you oppose something (such as well-designed density, new housing choices, or affordable housing), think carefully about who it’s meant to help, and put yourself in their place.

Neighbor Michael Whelan also wants to participate in more community engagement:

My biggest resolution is try to attend every single ANC meeting in my neighborhood. I think ANCs have way too much power, especially to block new housing, bike lanes, and bus lanes. But the reality is that they are there, DC government listens to them, and if I'm present as a strong YIMBY voice my commissioners might hear arguments that they wouldn't encounter otherwise. Also, I see it as a good opportunity to get to know more people in the neighborhood.

Curbed has published another extensive list of things residents can do to improve their cities, and Neighbor Ashton Roehmer hopes to do several (out of 101!) of these activities this year.

My own goal? To better appreciate the views of people outside of the urbanist community.

Like most people, I'm pretty convinced most of the time that I'm right, but a lot of people in our neighborhoods either don't understand or don't agree with our general ethos (not to mention all the debates within urbanist thought). We live in a society that requires consensus, and we won't move very far forward without engaging with folks who don't necessarily or entirely share our views.

Do you have any urbanist resolutions for 2019?

Stephen Hudson resides in Southwest DC — the fourth quadrant he has lived in. He works for a government relations firm and has previous experience with transportation policy at a trade association. His professional interests include transportation and infrastructure, foreign languages, and comparative international politics. The views expressed are his own.